February 17, 2015

Zoo Day

On a beautiful fall day last October, we were rushing around like crazy looking at houses and at the last minute decided a trip to the zoo was in order.  At the time, Tess was obsessed with elephants and to be honest, my sole motivation on hauling our own little wild animals to the zoo (on an already busy day) was strictly to see our baby girl's reaction to her favorite animal up close and personal.  Yes we rushed and yes the kids complained, but it ended up being a load of fun and we were all blown away by the new renovations at good old Hogle Zoo.  Unlike zoo visits of the past, the animals were out in full force and definitely made our hour at the zoo well worth it.  Without further adieu, I give you,
Talking Pictures: Zoo Day
I know I'm supposed to let the pictures do the talking here, but I just cant resist.  Isn't my husband the best Daddy ever?  I agree.

February 4, 2015

Ba-A-la-la-la-la (Couldn't Resist)

This past Thanksgiving was especially meaningful for us as we knew it would be the last time together with my entire family for quite some time.
We started the holiday off right, with a pre-thanksgiving kinder play, presented by the cutest darn pilgrim that ever was...
Thanksgiving morning we gathered together at Grandma and Grandpa's, ready to feast.
But first, a little cousin lovin'...
Meanwhile, Tessa made sure Gramps didn't butcher the beautiful bird...
The food was excellent.  We thoroughly enjoyed our fabulous feast...well, except for the part where Tessa went crazy and screamed for most of it as she insisting on drink after drink of sparkling cran-apple cider.  (Who can blame her?) 
BUT, everything did taste delicious, especially Grandma Lisa's homemade stuffing, which Wyatt had been looking forward to for months.
I continued my tradition of making a pie for each member of my fam.  John of course went with his usual lemon meringue and I am happy to announce that for the first time in nearly 12 years of marriage, I nailed it!  The filling wasn't runny, the meringue set beautifully, and I didn't set it on fire...that's a story for another day.
(Future reference: Used recipe in Cook's Illustrated.)
My triumph was short lived however as none of the other pies turned out too well,  Wyatt's recent obsession with butterscotch brownies (made by his darling math teacher) led to his choice of butterscotch pie.  It tasted amazing, for a soup.  Who knows what I did wrong, but it did not set up at all.  Nor did Macie's banana cream...notice a theme here?  Pies are certainly not my strong point, though I'm determined to one day be at least an average pie maker and not completely suck.  Cole choose the same pumpkin pie from last year, though if memory serves, he hated it then too.  It turned out okay, though the filling was rather lumpy for some reason.  Anywho, won't be sharing any recipes here as I most likey will never repeat them. 
Moving on.
Keeping with tradition, we all opened up a Christmas gift and then stuffed our bursting bellies into our new PJ's...
And then we were off to the theater.
Where we watched the cutest show ever.  Like ever.
...and ended up quoting it constantly over the next week month.  Ba-A-la-la-la-la anyone?
The next day we held our annual day-after-Thanksgiving-ginger-bread-house-decorating which my sister amazingly does most of the work for every year.  The kids love it.  Okay, I think the grown ups do too...
The best part?  Hanging out with family one more time...
Totally lying, the best part is for sure all the sugar...
In the end, our houses were moderate at best. ('Cept for Montell's, her's is always a work of art.)
This time was bittersweet for John and I as he left for Colorado the following day, where we joined him two excruciatingly long weeks later.  
I'm so grateful for my beautiful sweet family, for John and all he is doing for us (more on that to come) and for both of our parents, siblings, and grandparents.  It is easy to take them all for granted when you are so close.  Having been in Colorado for almost 2 months now, we are definitely missing everyone and realizing how very blessed we have been.  If anyone ever reads this, we love you all so very much. 

January 20, 2015

A Real Ugly Family 2015

Though unpacking and settling into a new home and city has taken up nearly every second of my spare time, I couldn't let January slip by without posting our annual "Uglies".  
2014 was a year full of ups and downs, but for the most part a fantastic year for our family.  We are so excited about our new life in Colorado and are thrilled with how well the kids are settling in.  I can't wait to post about EVERYTHING going on, but first...

A Real Ugly Family 2014
(For the story behind the McCoy Family Uglies go HERE or HERE.)

Each of our children have their own unique face they pull when they see a camera, when they want to be funny, or just at random times when I'm speaking to them.
  This year Macie's special face made plenty of appearances in our family photo album...
Thankfully the boys have outgrown the immature habit of ruining a perfectly lovely photo by pulling a ridiculous face...totally lying.
They continue to torment me whenever a camera is in hand, even my grown husband has a problem with this as well.  So yes, some of their special faces are included in this yearly wrap-up, but for the most part, the following photos are simply a few of our ugliest moments, in other words, real life. 
Story: One lovely Sunday morning I decided I would be super adventurous and straighten my treacherous locks.  To say my family was horrified is an understatement.  Straight hair, don't care? Um no.  When your children can't stand to look at you and your husband cringes when your eyes meet, you most certainly DO care.  The point, my straight hair is apparently worthy of this post as well... 
Besides hair-do's gone wrong, holidays in general tend to bring about a plethora of ugliness in our family.  Easter was especially interesting...
Birthdays, Thanksgiving, Christmas, St. Patty's Day...they all were QUITE interesting...
2014 took us on the road for a few family getaways, some great, some not so much.  Either way, they made for some great additions to the Ugly File on this here laptop...

Bonding time with Dad was amazingly ugly, yet so very beautiful...
Pretty sure I've never laughed harder.  Ever.  There's video evidence of  John's coming out as a full fledged WWF superstar...unfortunately, I deemed it a tad inappropriate for the good ol' family blog.  Macie's outfit however, makes the cut...
One of the oddest, ugliest moments of the year is hard to explain, it was just so very weird and looked a bit like this...
The play put on by our children left us speechless and slightly alarmed.
Moving on.
There's bound to be some fantastic ugliness whenever food is involved...
And there you have it.  My weirdly immature favorite post of the year.  
May the new year be filled with love and joy and the ability to laugh when things aren't all that pretty. 
 Happy 2015!