It is always nice to be home for Christmas Day, but it is also so nice to get away afterwards. I think it worked out perfectly this year: home the first part of the holiday break and then away for the end. We had a really super time at my parents' home and had the extra bonus of having Derek, Renee, and Josten there for some of it, too.
We headed out on Wednesday morning - bright and early. We made good time and so had a half day ahead of us. We got my dad a remote-control helicopter for Christmas - well, it was pretty late so I guess we can call it a New Year's Day gift. Ben got himself one as well. :) The boys were really excited to have Grandpa try to fly his and so we headed to the basement for some flying lessons. My dad definitely still knows a lot about helicopters and it was fun to hear him talk about them.
After flying, we went just down the road for some sledding. It was a small hill - yet made Ben and I a little nervous since it was a little steep and totally packed snow. But it turned out great and the kids had a blast - except when they didn't (as in, when they biffed it pretty good!).
There was a little jump there and Jonas and Emmy loved it. Miles would do it, but not as often as the other two. It was their favorite (except when it wasn't . . . :)
On Thursday morning - after a fun run (me) and bike ride (Ben) together - we all headed over to the Club House for some fly-time. We thought the basketball court would be a good place to fly the helicopters. Luckily there were some kids in there and so we were "forced" to stay upstairs in the lobby - which turned out to be a better spot, really. More space and just as high ceilings.
The boys had fun flying, too, of course.
While we were charging them all for another flight, we played various games: ping pong (my mom was pretty much the champion, even beating out Ben!), foosball, pool - and video games. There are a couple of arcade games there - for free - and my boys were pretty much crazy about them!
Then we came up to fly again and Miles got enraptured by the exercise room. He started walking on the treadmill and came up with a goal: to walk one mile.
We came back, got lunch, then headed out for some ice-skating! Midway has an awesome rink and we had a fabulous time. My parents came and watched for at least half of the time we were there. I think the kids were excited to show my parents that they had gotten a lot better since the last time they skated there!
On Friday our family went down to Provo to Provo's "Beach Resort." It's just this huge place. We took our kids to the indoor play-place and they loved it. They played for a bit, we ate our sack lunches, we let the kids each play some arcade games, let the girls ride the carousel,
We came back and had dinner. Then Ben and I and the 2 boys headed out for some night ice-skating. It was so super great. We all loved it and had a lot of fun. The girls stayed home and grandma played with them and then read to them and put them to bed.
By the time we got back from ice-skating, Derek and Renee and Josten had arrived (they had come to my parents' home a week earlier and then headed south to spend some time in St. George). We had a fun visit that night with them. I think they are pretty fantastic, if I do say so myself.
On Saturday morning the boys headed over to the Club House with Renee and Josten. Josten is 13 and my boys just think he's coooool. When they got back we had some lunch and then headed to the Ice Castles - which is right by the skating rink. It's pretty impressive:
Then we headed to another hill for some more sledding. This sledding trip consisted of a lot of bum-sledding as well. Headed up by Ben.
We got back and then got ready to go to SLC to Benihana's. I had mentioned going there to my dad earlier (way before Christmas even) and then didn't say anymore because I felt bad at how much it would cost for him to pay for everyone (and pay for everyone he would!). But, of course, he had remembered and made reservations for everyone on Saturday. I was so excited - it had been a while since I had gone!
It was a fun evening and a fun experience to have with our kids.
Sunday was NOT a normal Sunday as Ben was home for all of it - wahoo! Lucy went to primary and Sunbeams and did awesome and, per the Primary President's report (who happens to be my mom), was one of very few Sunbeams who weren't bawling. Ha. :) Lucy was excited and asked me afterwords, "Do I get to do that [go to primary/Sunbeams] for always?" :)
Renee made us a delicious dinner of salmon - silver and pink, I think. That she had caught herself. It was really yummy - as was the rest of the dinner. Including Miles' polenta-cups he made (and talked and talked and talked about).
We watched some home-videos that evening, too. Ben was thrilled to have everyone watch one of my finest moments - the time where Erin and I had gone down on a tube (sledding) and I told her it was her turn to take it back up the hill. Erin denied it was her turn. So I just kicked the tube at her and ran up the hill. I would like to hope I've matured since then, but I'm not so sure. . . :)
Then we pretty much just got up, I ran, packed up, and left on Monday morning.
It was just a really great time! The only thing it was missing was the Hubands. Otherwise it was practically perfect!