October and November went by in a blur. School and our other activities have kept me busy this year, and I think I'm still working on finding our new normal and a balance of how to have stuff while keep the house in order. Some days I do much better than others and feel like I'm on top of it; other days I send Jesse, "please bring home pizza for dinner, I failed," messages. I try to keep those days to a minimum.
At the beginning of November, we went to Nashville for a long weekend to see some dear friends. Basically all of our friends that we have stayed close to from college have ended up in TN, and we were able to get down there for a few days that went way too quickly. Except for the drive, that took FOREVER. I know some of my friends are blessed with children who travel easily and well, and please know I am very jealous of you. Mine have gone through stages of cooperating on roadtrips, and I think overall, Lily and Emma can stay entertained easily now. Kaylee. hates. the. car. The projected 16 hour round trip drive ended up being at least 21 and I think Kaylee cried/screamed/fussed for 18 of those hours, and I'm not exaggerating. But the time with friends was wonderful: we walked into Jared and Lindsey's house and Lily and Emma immediately took off to play with their two daughters like they were together every day. Those four little girls ended up slumber partying together, and it made Lindsey and my hearts so happy. Jesse and I also were able to FINALLY able to meet sweet Olivia, our friends' Derek and Tiffany's little girl. My 3 crazies just loved her to pieces and Kaylee didn't want to let anyone else hold her...until Lily, Emma and Kaylee saw the pile of dirt and sand they could play in.
Thanksgiving day was low key here. The plan had been to go to my dad's side of the family gathering, but I was not feeling up to it. We all were fighting congestion and coughs, just changing weather related, and with Jesse's family coming in that weekend, I just couldn't do it. I was incredibly disappointed, but coming off of the Nashville trip with our little screamer, we felt that was the better option. Our neighbor's rescued us and let us hang out with them for the day, and the report I got when Lily and Emma went to help make pies was that Lily was a pie crust rolling champ, and rolled out about a dozen crusts by herself. Emma and Kaylee absolutely melted down later, so staying home was definitely the better option. Matt, Erin and kiddos came in Friday evening and Mom and Dad Hildebrand Saturday for a Hildebrand Thanksgiving weekend, and that was wonderful and fun. Erin and Mom held down the fort entertaining kiddos so Matt and I could make our dinner, and it was delicious, and being able to cook without the girls coming into the kitchen at all was just the best. The powers of grandparents and their super special play dough!
The first weekend in December was Jesse's company Christmas party. Mom and Dad H came back to our house to watch the kiddos for us so we could, and much fun was had and we looked spiffy.
A few weekends ago, we drove to Great Wolf Lodge in Ohio to meet up with my side of the family for our Christmas weekend. It was so much fun and the girls had a blast. Someone had the great idea to go to the Cincinnati Zoo for Zoo Lights, which was brilliant. We ended up going after naps and leaving right as it was getting dark which was even more brilliant because holy crowds, Batman. NOT something any of us really wanted to do with 4 little kids. Plus, Kaylee and Cameron were very done, but we really enjoyed it anyway. Lily was a little fish and loved swimming as much as she could, and loved showing everyone how she could go under water. She stayed in the wave pool most of the time, getting splashed and thrown around and loving it. Which kills me, because she was getting dunked and loving it and handling it perfectly well, but if she gets a drip of water on her face in the bathtub, she freaks out. I don't get it. The last thing Jesse and I were able to do before we left was leave Emma and Kaylee with my parents and take Lily on one of the water rides. She was nervous the whole way up, but decided she could be brave and give it a try and as soon as we got to the bottom, she was LOVING it and wanting to go again and again. So fun to share that with her.
|"girls, come get a cheesy picture with me!!"|
|"Lily and Emma! go sit with Kaylee! fine! be difficult, SOMEONE please come get in a picture with the big kitties!" enter Cameron and Aunt Kimmy.|
I'll catch up more eventually!