anniversary and Thanksgiving

 Last Wednesday Joe and I celebrated being married for 14 years in a row.  (I like to say "in a row" because it sounds so much more accomplished, don't you think?)  What a journey we've been on.  We had no idea 14 years ago the twists and turns this path of life would take us on.  But it's been a good road.  Reason numero uno:  God has been our tour guide.  He allows us to take detours here and there, learn some lessons, and then He leads us back to His perfect path.  Here we are, on our anniversary, driving up north to visit some of his relatives (our family) for Thanksgiving.

This was our first holiday (aside from birthdays) that we were away from our family and friends and usual traditions in the Bay Area.  It was sad thinking about all the fun we usually have with my sisters and their families, the kids being together and performing plays for us... but we are so thankful that we do have family here, too.  And it was fun celebrating with them.  Joe's cousins have kids near the same ages as ours.  They had fun running around the apartment building where Joe's aunt lives, and where we had our feast.  

Some highlights of the day:  We woke up to snow...  (it's been super cold, but no real snow where we live yet). Here's a shot of the glorious food that was feasted upon...  (which includes my semi-famous corn casserole that my sisters apparently boycotted.  One sister says it's because they just couldn't have it if I wasn't there to make it... the other said it's because they didn't have the recipe!  I'll post that soon, because it's oh-so-good, and usually a crowd pleaser.. and oh-so-easy, which is always a plus.)

After we ate, we had fun visiting with everyone, and the kids all did some more exploring and video taping who-knows-what.  Another highlight... they got stuck in the elevator!  Five kids, ages 11, 10, 9, and five-year-old twins.  All stuck in an elevator.  We were in a community room near the elevator and I heard a bunch of screaming.  At first I dismissed it, thinking the kids were upstairs in our room (there's a guest room there.. so nice!).. but when I heard it again, it sounded much more like panic than play.  I rushed to the elevator and assured them that we heard them and knew they were stuck, and that they should remain calm and we'd get help.  I actually thought they may be there a while and told Brooklyn to have everyone sit down and for her to tell them a story.  (I thought it was a good idea, to keep them calm and quiet.)  But Joe's uncle went upstairs, closer to where they were stuck, and gave much better instructions.  Turns out, there's plain as day instructions posted inside the elevator, telling a person exactly what to do if some such emergency should occur.  So the kids settled down and listened to him, made the phone call they needed to make, and were safely out in no time.  Quite scared, but safe.  The rest of the night, our kids didn't want to use the elevator, but we reminded them that everything worked out before, and now they knew just what to do if it ever happened again.  I'm sure that's part of this Thanksgiving they'll remember for a long time!

Later in the evening, we went to Joe's aunt's house and had a good time just hanging out, the kids playing with toys, us visiting, everyone stuffing popcorn and apples into our already overcrowded tummies.  We hadn't had a family picture taken in a long time, and no really good ones at all since the addition of Judah.. so we had a little photo shoot while there.  I really like this one, and it may be used as our Christmas card picture.. but Joe shaved his beard a few days later (yay!!!), so now this seems "so yesterday"!  If the opportunity arises, we may get a new picture taken.. if not, this one will suffice.  I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving also!  Now on to Christmas!!!

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