Saturday, October 15, 2016

Nathan, Laura and Ciara's Visit - October 2016

We had a Wonderful week with the Hansfords!! =)

The kids and I picked them up at the airport in the afternoon last Saturday.

Moriah and Ciara didn't take long to dress up!=)

On Sunday morning we headed to the zoo.   The weather was a little cool and rainy, but we managed to stay mostly dry by hitting the indoor exhibits first...

The kids checking out some snakes

Nathan, Laura and Ciara in the Tropics!

These two were adorable together

Laura and I

Too cute.   Moriah even dressed to match Ciara =)

Our four little cubs

I love this one of Nathan and Laura with the elephants

Our zoo was graced with a baby gorilla in the last couple months.    I hadn't seen it yet, so was really hoping to catch a glimpse.    This proved to be the highlight of the day, as the mom brought the baby right down by the window in front of us!!    The baby was still soo tiny and adorable!!!   

What a fun moment!

An enormous male outside

On Sunday evening, Laura and I went out for dinner together.    It was so great to have some time for just the two of us and chat over some delicious food.

On Monday, we (obviously!) celebrated Canadian Thanksgiving!    This is our second one with Nathan and Laura and it was really fun to have company in the kitchen...

Hard at work

Well, mostly

Fast friends (despite four years between them!)

We did a fun mini photo shoot of Ciara in the afternoon because Laura wanted a black and white portrait to frame.   She did great!

Here's one of the shots

Laura read her fair share of books to the kids while she was here! =)

That afternoon we had the kids decorate our table runner...

I love how it turned out!!

Girl turkeys

...and boys =)

All of us at dinner (it was delicious and relatively little work!!)

I got lucky, and the turkey turned out okay, even though I overcooked it!

I snapped this picture in the afternoon when I took dinner over to the Pennys (who had Just arrived home with the twins!!!!)   Woohoo!    Also in big news, they were officially adopted on October 13th!!

Pumpkin, coconut cream parfaits that Laura, Nathan and I had for dessert
(It was sugar free and Nathan's feedback was, "It has a good texture.")

On Tuesday, we spent a cool, but beautiful morning at the Apple Jack pumpkin patch!

Nathan and Laura humored me with this picture (I LOVE that Nathan in the short pumpkin here!!)

Love these three!

Caleb loved this big trikes!

One of my favorites of the day

The llamas were adorable and amusing =)

The kids loved feeding the animals

The slides were a big hit!   (The kids just had to be careful to stop and get off before the mud pit at the end!)

This one was a sort of conveyer belt, made out of PVC pipes, which made for a funny, bumpy ride (I even tried it!)

Zip lining!!

Caleb showing off a flip on the giant bouncy thing

Ciara loved it!

These Huge pipe "Hamster Wheels" were entertaining to watch!   Nathan and I each ended up having to go with our little kids and both decided after that we are much too old for such things!   Ha!   Keenan and Moriah were really good at it and did it over and over!

Nathan and Ciara

Barrel Train!

Off they go!

Caleb in the Caboose =)

Ciara driving Laura and Moriah to school

Keenan and Caleb trying out a fun game, where you raise and lower the pipes to get your ball through a maze

Me and mine

Our little Punkins

Tuesday evening we did a family shoot just before sunset...

One of my favorites

Sweet friends

Caleb snuck into one with Laura=)

On Wednesday morning we all went to Jimmy's Egg for a yummy breakfast...

If this booth looks familiar... it's the one we Always sit in, and almost always have our favorite waitress, Sally! =)

After breakfast, we hunted down this cool spot I had seen in a friend's picture on facebook and took some fun (chilly) photos:

 This is apparently the flag of Wichita!

Keenan made this elaborate lego fortress during their visit!

On Thursday, the kids and I were busy with CC most of the day.  I dropped Philip off so Nathan and Laura could use his car for the day.   They had a nice family day, going to Exploration Place, Olive Garden and also did some shopping.

Friday was a fun, chill day, mostly here at home.    Us girls went to the home decor warehouse store this morning and got drinks at Starbucks.   After lunch, we went to Braum's and Nathan and Laura treated everyone to ice cream and then we let the kids run it off at the park. =)

Caleb decided this was a good use for a sheet of (free) address labels 

Philip came home early, so we decided last minute to go to Jason's Deli for dinner, which was fun (and we had no table tipping mishaps this time!) =)

 We got a big group picture quickly before Ciara went to bed

...and a goofy one

Laura and I
(She is such a Wonderful friend and has been a blessing in my life for several decades now!)

Thank you, thank you, thank you three for honoring us with your first family vacation after "officially" becoming a family!   Wichita welcomes you Anytime!!


Mom W. said...

It looks like it was a really great week, so glad everyone had so much fun. Good thing I got that zoo pass back to you... yikes, that was close!!

Laura said...

Awwwww I LOVE this post (possibly biased ;) ). Thank you for an amazing time and your hospitality. All 3 of us enjoyed it and so value this special gift of friendship God has given. Love you!!

Mark and Rebekah said...

Wow! It looks like such an awesome time away for Nathan and Laura. How special that they got to spend their first vacation outside Canada with you guys!!! You do make Wichita a great vacation destination ;) I loved looking at all these happy pictures! Moriah and Ciara are TOO CUTE together! How special. And I loved the professional pictures you did too...

Laura said...

Awwwww I LOVE this post (possibly biased ;) ). Thank you for an amazing time and your hospitality. All 3 of us enjoyed it and so value this special gift of friendship God has given. Love you!!

Kathleen said...

What a great time you all had together! You have such a gift for making everything fun & you are such a gracious host too. And you look absolutely marvelous!! Loved all the pics of course...really liked Caleb's use of address labels-lol. The table decorations & pumpkin dessert looked great too. Love, Mom