Sunday, December 28, 2008

This one's for Gramps

As if this wasn't funny enough (for me at least), it is exactly what my dad used to do to my sister and I and ensured plenty of laughter!

Trip to the East Coast recap

I don't like posting about being out of town until we are back home. A little paranoid, I guess. I posted all the Christmas stuff, but left out where we were. The following pictures and information would have been a giveaway, so now that we are safely home (16 hours on the road yesterday!), here are some details from our big East Coast trip.

First, on the second day of our drive to Maryland, we saw something like 4 rainbows. The first bunch came on route 81 in Virginia, but this beauty was on interstate 70 in Maryland:

After celebrating Christmas with my family and our college friends the weekend before Christmas, we spent the rest of Christmas week with Scott's family. Tuesday we had some free time, so we went down to DC to play tourists. We took our nephew, Alex, who was off of school already, and Grammy and Grandad (who is a great historical reference to have around, and not because of his age :) , just because he has studied so much!). Katy met us in town, too.

First, we went to the newly reopened American History Museum. Got to see the new display of the Star Spangled Banner, a great history of America at war (where Ryan got to touch a musket),

the entertainment exhibit (Scott loves Kermit!)

and a fun transportation display.

We went to the Natural History Museum for lunch (huge dinosaur cookies!)

and then explored that museum, including the dinosaurs

and the insect zoo where Alex and Katy held cockroahes and Ryan held a millipede!

One last stop at the Archives to see the famous documents:

Then we said good-bye to Katy (I love this picture):

and went off to try and drive past the White House. We had a hard time navigating the streets (so many around the White House are closed now), so we found a parking spot and ran over to catch a glimpse (and some pictures) real quick. They are setting up for January's inauguration:

Here's all of us in front of the White House:

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Christmas Morning

We agreed on a start time of 7:30 am. Ryan was very excited to see that Santa had come:

We started with Alex reading the Christmas story to us.

Then we all took turns opening gifts. Ryan was excited by a "Lightening McQueen!" gift (thanks Aunt Gus!):

Ryan and Alex opened gifts we had gotten them from their respective schools at the same time:

Ryan wearing a few of his gifts (Redskin's jersey and sneakers):

Kate with one of her Bendable creations:

Hope your Christmas was equally fun!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Christmas Eve

Ryan and his cousin, Alex, dressed similar for church.

Christmas Eve started with mass, where our niece Rachel sang with the children's choir.

One of my favorite parts was Ryan singing the chorus of Hark! The Herald Angels Sing, "Glory to the newborn King" at the top of his voice. So sweet!

Next it was on to dinner, where we took some family pictures:

Once we got home, we had to prepare for Santa. Alex and Kate put the cookies out:

Ryan and Kate sprinkled out reindeer food:

Before going to dinner, Ryan's cousins checked the NORAD to find out where Santa was. For some reason, this freaked Ryan out and he decided he was scared of Santa. We calmed him down a bit before bed, but he was nervous to sleep alone. We'll see how he does in the morning.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Partying with the College Park friends

We were lucky this year to see our college friends many times, from homecoming, to a wedding, to our annual holiday gathering! This year, we gathered at the Payne's, and many of us spent the night, allowing the festivities to go late and continue a bit the next day.

The kids had fun tearing apart the playroom, the adults had fun teasing Shane, we all enjoyed the Redskin's win!

Always wishing we could see them more than we do, but SO thankful that we can be apart as much as we are and still stay so close.

The kids:

The grown-ups taking pictures of the kids:

Ryan and Wesley (only little boys in the group!):

The girls:

The guys:

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Bonanno Family Christmas Party

After 2 years of missing it, we made it to the annual Bonanno Family Christmas Party this year! There were probably over 60 of my family members there from my dad's side of the family. Five siblings from my grandmother's generation, all my dad's first cousins but one, and many of us second cousins. Plus, there are so many kids right now, Santa had to bring the toys in two bags!

That's right, Santa makes an early stop at this party! Ryan was so good, and despite not wanting to sit on his lap again, he did so he could receive his presents.

We also celebrated Aunt Mary's 90th birthday. Since my grandmother is gone (she would have been 91 this year), Aunt Mary is the matriarch of the family. So good to celebrate and honor my family roots and history!

Ben's Baptism

I have a new Godson. We attended Ben's baptism today. He cried through some of it (too overwhelming!), but he's so cute, that you can totally forgive him! We had a great time with Kirsten, Rich, Mae, Ben, and their families!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Ryan's Christmas Party (continued)

Here are some more pictures from Ryan's class caroling and Christmas party.

Lining up to carol:

Ryan and Griffin:

Ryan and Holly:

Making a holiday frame:

Making reindeer food:

And decorating a cookie during snacktime:

It was a fun day!

Ryan's Christmas Party

I have other things to catch up on on the blog, but I cannot resist posting this awesome picture my colleague Sarah took yesterday at Ryan's school. All the PK kids caroled through the early childhood parts of St. George's, then went back to their classrooms for Chrsitmas activities and food. It was a blast!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Heros and Superhero Party

Today was a busy day! After school, we delivered cookies to the Bartlett firefighters and police officers. They seemed very excited to get them, gave Ryan lots of stickers, let him check out the fire trucks, and tour their fire house! No pictures, but great memories!

Then we attended Ryan's friend and soccer team mate, Jared's birthday party. Ryan wore his superman cape. It was a lot of fun and we look forward to having more playdates in the future!

Monday, December 15, 2008

Grandad's Visit

We were lucky to have Grandad come to town for a business meeting tonight (a week before we go visit him for Christmas!). We were making Christmas cookies all weekend, and it seemed appropriate to save the gingerbread cookies for him to help with. The recipe is his mom's and it is Scott and Ryan's favorite!

He also played Superman with Ryan.

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Santa's Lap!

Hooray! He finally did it! Ryan sat in Santa's lap all by himself! What a banner year! Here they are looking at Ryan's Christmas list:

We went to Zoo Lights tonight with our friends Melissa, Doug, and Mason. Here are Scott & Ryan with the panda (still skittish around things in costumes):
Decorating and eating cookies:
And the only lights picture I got before my camera batteries died:
I'll post a few more when I get them from Melissa.