Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Thanksgiving in Idaho

This year for Thanksgiving we trekked over to Idaho to spend it with my parents and siblings in Burley.

Packing for 7 people exhausts and overwhelms me!  It is my least favorite part of vacations.

The twins loved showing me that they could fit in my suitcase.

If only packing were that easy!

We left the Friday evening before Thanksgiving to head to Eastern Washington that evening.  That required us to hit Snoqualmie Pass in the dark.  As we approached the pass, we discovered that the pass was closed because of an accident due to bad weather.  We were worried that we would get up to the closed part and sit there for hours, which we did not want in the freezing weather with 5 tired kids.  We also heard that chains were required, which we did not have.  We were pretty sure that we would be turning around and just going home and trying again the next day, but decided first to go buy some chains and go from there.

We backtracked a mile or two to North Bend and bought a set of chains for our tires.  By the time we bought them and learned how to put them on, the pass was back open.  We decided to give it a try.  We chained up, which then required us to only travel 25-30 MPH.  

The roads were very slushy and icy and it was snowing.  It was a very slow, tedious trip.  We had to keep our chains on for about 40 miles.  With the stop/delays, bad weather and slow going, it took us 7 hours to get to Ben's parent's house when it normally takes us no more than 3.5 hours.  We arrived at 11:00 p.m. and we were exhausted.

Saturday morning we were worried that we would encounter more bad weather.  After a very long trip the night before, we were not anxious for another trip with bad weather and extra time.  Luckily, the weather was good and we made it to my parent's house in the normal time.  
We had a wonderful week of visiting and spending time with siblings and cousins.

Battle ship was the game of the week with the kids.

The most hilarious players were 3 year old Jackson and 5 year old Lexi, neither of which knew how to play the correct way.  The dialogue between the two of them went something like this: "Do you have an E?  Do you know what an E looks like?"  "Yes, I have an E!"  And then they'd put a peg in a random place.  They loved it and it was adorable.

My parents took my kids and Amanda's kids to Twin Falls one afternoon for a day out.

All the kids (minus Olivia) fit in our van.

They stopped at the Twin Falls temple first to get a picture.  We love to see the temple!

Afterwards, my parents treated all of them to the movie at the theater.  They loved it!

The kids played lots of Wii together.  It was very intense.

Kids sleep all over the house at my parents'.  Lexi and Chloe slept together one night and we found them all snuggled together.  It was cute until they both came in at 2:00 a.m. and woke us up to tell us they both had woken each other up and were kicking one another.

Livy loved this little plastic chair of my mom's.  She loved climbing up on it.

She also thought the Wii remotes were her own personal cell phone.

My mom organized a puzzle contest one evening.  Each kid had an adult helper and it was a race to see who could get done first.

It was a hit!

Everyone loves a bedtime story from Grandma.

The first half of the week was FREEZING cold with some intense, freezing wind.  The kids had to bundle up in snow gear to even step out the door.  The second half of the week it was in the high 50's, low 60's and the kids spent lots of time outdoors.

Thanksgiving Day!

Livy warmed up to Uncle George while I helped with dinner.

Before we ate, we attempted a grandkid/grandparent picture.  It turned out pretty well!  11 grandkids with 2 on the way!

Ben slicing the ham

Dad slicing the turkey

These two cute cousins, just a few weeks apart in age, had fun playing together.  They loved looking out the window, watching the big kids play and seeing Grandma's dog and kitty.

Catherine made these adorable Thanksgiving cutout signs.

The kids kept busy while dinner was being made by playing outside in the 60 degree weather.

The kid dinner table

Livy loved all the food- her first Thanksgiving dinner!

These two cousins- I love them!  They love being together and only had one small argument the whole week.

Dishing up!

Eating for two! :)

Dinner was fabulous!  

After dinner, we sat the kids down to play a Thanksgiving Bingo that I had made and brought (thanks to my sis-in-law Megan for the idea).

The kids loved it and we played until everyone had won at least twice.

Winning meant you got to pick a prize from the prize table. 

Me and Livy called the numbers. 

Next was dessert and Olivia loved the pumpkin pie.  She loved it so much that she ate at least a full adult sized slice (if not more) and rubbed it all over her face and smeared it in her hair.

Friday was our last full day with cousins.

Leah played a hearty game of football with Tristan and Carter.  I love that she loves to play hard and get dirty and have fun.

Recovering a fumble!

Lexi and Paige were good buddies and spent lots of time together throughout the week.  They made masks one day for a talent show.

They made and passed out invites to their show.

It was a trampoline show and they were cute.

Leah was obsessed with my mom's kitty.  If we couldn't find her, we could count on her being outside hauling that kitty around.

She and Tristan loved the wiggle cars.

Friday night, Grandma had a party for the two December birthday buddies whose birthdays are a day apart.

My Grandma Dewnsup just recently moved to Burley and we are so glad that is close now so that we can see her more when we are in town.

After moving, my Grandma went through all of her stuff trying to get rid of some of her things that she didn't have room for anymore.  She came across these 4 pillowcases that she had hand crocheted and hand stitched and wanted to give them to the 4 oldest granddaughters. 

They are beautiful and I love them!

My mom had a gift for Chloe for her birthday that she wanted her to open.

It was the perfect Chloe type of gift- a treasure box with a few treasures inside.  It was so fun.

My mom even put pictures of Chloe as a baby and a toddler in the front slots.  It was so cute!

These two have such a special bond.  Chloe adores my mom.

We took off to go home Saturday morning.  We hit bad weather over Meacham pass and it was slow going for awhile.  And "Deadman's Pass" is a terrible name for a snowy, dangerous pass.  Not much of a comfort as you drive through it. :)

We stopped for the night in Tri-Cities and finished our trek back home Sunday.

We were welcomed by the gorgeous, snow covered trees and mountains over Snoqualmie pass.  We were glad that the snow was on the trees and not on the road this time.  We truly live in a beautiful place!