Friday, December 30, 2011

A Visit with My Mom

At Mom's house, the boys made super-simple 'turtle' candies out of pretzels, Rolo candies, and pecans. They were delicious! Nate was also able to give my family an updated on what he had been doing in Iraq for the past six months.

We were also able to visit with Brian and Leandra, Ariel and her new boyfriend, Wesley, Kristin and Jacob, and my cousin Lori and her husband, Greg. It was great for Nate to be able to see everyone again and we had a great time.

Visit with My Dad

Our Christmas trip to see family looked a little different this year. Because Nate was still on block leave from this most recent deployment, we really made our family of four a priority in planning how we would spend our time. In the past, we have done reintegration really well ... and really poorly ... and have learned that our nuclear family requires some time to get back to the 'normal' of having Dad home. We also love that we are in Texas, and close to ALL of our immediate family members so taking a trip to see them was an absolute must. The time was slightly more brief than other Christmas trips, but the time spent was just as valuable.

Our first stop in my family was to see my dad. He has been through some serious health struggles this year and it was great to see him feeling good for our visit. The boys filled him in on their lives and we spent a great afternoon together.  As a former US Air Force airman, my dad is always interested in hearing about Nate's Army career and they spent some good time talking about the deployment and what will be next for our family.  It was a great first stop on a fun family trip.

My boys with my dad

My Dad and Me

Nate explains the battalion coin to my dad.

Baylor Bears: Alamo Bowl Champions!

How thrilled am I to be a Baylor Bear this year!?! We were so excited to watch my Bears win the Alamo Bowl game, shattering records along the way. In a crazy offensive game, Baylor wins over Washington, 67-56.

Some fun highlights here from ESPN:

Monday, December 26, 2011

Crazy Cousin Fun

Cook cousins always have a great time together. Opening stockings, playing flag football, and waging a silly-string war proved no different. Fun was had by all ... Abby, Carter, Brody, Trey, Joshua, Elizabeth, Hannah, Emma, Veronique, Destiny, and Mo!

Opening Gifts in Waco

We had a wonderful time visiting with the extended Cook clan for Christmas. Lots of Baylor cheer and cousin love in the house!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Georgetown Cupcake!

We received a dozen cupcakes from Georgetown Cupcake, of the infamous "DC Cupcakes" on TLC. They were a delicious gift from a fabulous friend. YUM!

CHEERS to our delicious Georgetown Cupcakes!

Red Carpet Experience

Tonight, we experienced the 'red carpet,' complete with paparazzi, photos, and gourmet theater fare. It was a fun addition to watching "Puss in Boots" and the boys really seemed to enjoy it. After the movie, we went to the lobby's "Riverwalk" and had dinner at the Mexican restaurant there, The Riverwalk Cantina. A wonderful last night for our stay here at the Gaylord Texan.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Kung Fu Panda Awesome Snow Tubing

We spent the afternoon snow tubing inside the Gaylord Texan. Really. Crazy fun and the boys had an absolute blast!
SKADOOSH! It's going to SNOW for a second year in a row at Gaylord Texan, but this year the experience will feature even more fun! That's because Po has created an extreme eight-lane, tubing hill that's filled with dragon-warrior AWESOMENESS and covered in REAL SNOW!