We were also lucky enough to see Tom's grandparents, who visited the Ferris house while we were in Lincoln, and we drove north to South Sioux City, NE the day after Christmas to share lunch with Tom's grandma, two aunts, two uncles, and five cousins. Will particularly enjoyed Tom's cousins George (10th grade) and John (7th grade) who both played "boy games" like wrestling and football with him. As I watched Will run George and John ragged, I remembered with a smile just 10 or so years ago (when George and John were about Will and Hallie's ages) watching George and John run Tom ragged. What goes around comes around, in a round about way. :)
I took embarrassingly few pictures, considering everything we did and everyone we saw during our trip. I guess we were just too busy having fun...
Wrapped up like a present.
Discussing her wrappings.
AJ and the kids after Christmas Eve mass.
Setting out milk (Santa's not allergic to regular milk, in case you were wondering)
and cookies for Santa and carrots for the reindeer.
Opening one present on Christmas Eve.
Modeling her Christmas Eve gift from Grandma and Grandpa.
Santa's gift to Hallie (she already had the doll, whose name is
Cassie Grandpa - yes, that's first name = Cassie,
middle name = Grandpa): a tea set and a tea table and chairs.
Santa's gift to Will: a Storm Troopers Bullet Gun (Santa's had a really hard
time deciding whether or not to follow through on Will's request for a gun...)
and the book One. Read it. You won't be disappointed.
Setting up her first tea party.
Enjoying tea and cupcakes with Cassie Grandpa. I absolutely cannot believe
Hallie fits in the designed-for-American-Girl-dolls chairs.
Moments after this picture was taken we established the "DO NOT POINT THE GUN
AT PEOPLE'S FACES INCLUDING YOUR OWN" rule.
AJ gave Hallie her first tiara...
...and her first pair of fake/fashion glasses. The glasses were perhaps the biggest hit of the day - she wore them all day on Christmas and for many days after that.
This picture is included to illustrate two things. First, Tom is wearing an orange mustache labeled with the mood "sassy". Fitting, I suppose, as he can be a bit sassy. Second, look outside. It's still dark out, and at this point we'd already been opening presents for at least 30 minutes. I do not like getting up before the sun, even on Christmas, but it was worth it to see the excitement on Tom's face when he opened that sassy mustache. And the excitement on the kids' faces when they realized Santa'd come.
AJ and her melancholy mustache. She wasn't melancholy - she
just thought the blue mustache went best with her outfit.
Helping Hallie open her gift from him - is was a pink hair bow
that he spent 25 minutes carefully selecting.
Will with his gift - an Angry Bird - from Hallie. Though Hallie had A LOT of helping
picking out this present, Will thought she'd done it all on her own and showered
her with love and thanks for giving him something so awesome.
Reapplying Hello Kitty chapstick for the 187th time.
Unkie Grant - no mood mustache here, just the real deal.
Grandpa Mike and Tom opening the birdhouses the kids painted for them.
Merry, merry Christmas!