Minnesota, Holidays and Family

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2013 Holidays are over but the memory is there to stay.  We had a fabulous time in the rather cold Minnesota.  My dad, Joe and I flew in on Christmas day and after a quick run to my sister’s house to drop my dad off we surprised Amanda and Ron with a phone call to invite ourselves to their house for Christmas dinner.  Wasn’t very nice of us to do but the food was delicious and the company great.  Then off we went to see our grandkids and of course Cassie and Aaron.  Cate was so excited to see us and Alex had changed in just those few months since we left.  Alex loves to jabber and screech when you talk to him and his eyes are so full of express.  We always said Cate was such a good baby but I think Alex out does her.   He even popped a tooth while we were there and he was so good we didn’t even notice it.  He also surprised everyone by doing his first roll-over for all of us.  Cate, of course, is our sunshine.  At almost 3 (which she is telling us she is going to be on her birthday) she is so much fun.  She loves to pretend and we love watching her or participating in her pretend games.  She says she is coming to CA and would we love that.

Merle 93 Birthay with Cate helpingMy dad celebrated his 92nd birthday on Dec 26th with a family get-together at my sister Laurie’s house.  Thirty-eight members of his family attended.  A few from out-of-state were unable to attend but dad was thrilled that so many came on a cold evening.  One of my mom’s sisters, Aunt Alice, came and helped celebrate.  Fun was had by all.  It was so good for Joe and me to catch-up with our nieces and nephews and great-nieces and great-nephews.   One of our great-nephew is getting married in July.  When we start thinking about that we realize we are getting old.  Possibilities of becoming a great-great aunt and uncle are around the corner.  Oh my!

Eric took a week off of work so he could spend time with us.  Joe and he took in a movie and we spent a day of shopping. Zach and Lauren flew in from Ohio on Saturday, Dec 28th and we celebrated our Christmas on Sunday the 29th.  Life can’t be any better when you have all your family in one room and there is a lot of laughter and fun.  We love our kids and grandkids and treasure those moments we have with them.  Christmas is all about family but mostly about the little kids.  Cate didn’t let us down.  It was so much fun watching her open both her and Alex’s presents.  Look out next year Cate; Alex won’t let you get close to his presents.  Our kids went out a couple of nights all together while we got to enjoy the grandkids and Joe and I and the kids went to dinner and a movie one night.  We also were able to keep Cate and Alex out of daycare a few days so we could have them to ourselves.  Great days!

Grandma and EricNew Years day Joe, Eric and I went to visit Grandma Boll at St. Andrews Memory Care.  We had a great time.  Grandma loves to see Eric.  We think because Eric is the oldest grandchild she seems to remember the most about him.  She tells him stories of her working years and sometimes we might hear the same story more than several times but she always came back to telling Eric how good looking he is and who doesn’t want to hear that.  After we left grandma’s we had a nice lunch and visit with Joe’s sister and husband, Bonnie and Tim.  Another great day in MN!

But it had to come to an end.  Zach and Lauren needed to get back to their lives in Ohio. Eric, Amanda and Ron needed to get back to their jobs and Cassie and Aaron needed us out of their home.  Ten days is long enough to have mom and dad and your in-laws stay in your house and disrupt your routine (although we wouldn’t change it for a minute).  It was hard to kiss those babies one last time before we left but the way time flies we know it won’t be long before we get to hug and kiss them again and see all our kids.  A Grand Marais, MN trip is in the planning for June of this summer.  Family time – nothing better!

Joe,Amanda,Cate, Great Grandpa       Ron, Aaron and Cate fishing       Lauren, Alex, Zach       Cassie and Alex

So we left the cold of Minnesota to the somewhat warmth of CA.  Lily did great with Michelle at doggy daycare.  When we saw Lily we thought it was the wrong dog.  Michelle had brushed her out and we had a dog that was a big fluff of white hair.  She was happy to see us and happy to be home and a little tired.  I wish we could find more Michelle’s in our travels.  She is a true dog lover or maybe a true dog whisperer.  Lily seems more acceptable of other people besides me.  She is even better with Joe.  We just need to continue to work with her.

We are not sure how long we will stay in the area where my dad and sisters are but eventually we will head towards Arizona. 

Happy New Year and keep safe!  Hugs and more hugs to our kids and grandkids.  Thank you for a fabulous Holiday!