Monday, August 20, 2012

Welcome Home Mom & Dad (part 1)

As I mentioned in my previous post, we went to Utah to welcome my parents home from the Vladivostok Russia Mission of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. They served an honorable and dedicated mission for 3 years. We were fortunate enough to meet some of the couples and missionaries they served with and know that Mom and Dad were taken care of, loved, and did an awesome job. It was such a blessing for our family, to have them serve....but we are so excited they are home too! Here we are, in two spread out groups, waiting for them to come off the plane. It was a long wait!!

They had barely stepped off the escalator when someone yelled, "Ok kids - go get 'em!"  That was so fun to watch most of the grand-kids run as fast as they could to get a hug from Grandma and Grandpa!

My mom is hiding in all the pictures - but she is there, being tacked with hugs!!

We had such a crazy and fun-filled first 10 days.  Most of my mom's side of the family came into town.  We were able to get lots of pictures and play with lots of cousins!  Here are the Pratt Family Pictures we took.  I think they turned out great!

Mom and Dad!
Pratt Family - July 2012.  We are all here - 28 total, with two on the way. 
Pratt Grandchildren.  The girls used to outnumber the boys.  Summer and I are both having boys - so the numbers will almost be even 9 vs. 8.
The Siblings
The Siblings with our spouses.  We need a good girl for Tyson....any takers?
We spent the first week together with all of my aunts, uncles and cousins.  Enjoying family picnics, the forth of July parade and fireworks, playing games and just being together.  Here is most of the Nicholls Family together at the park.  Unfortunately, my mom and dad had walked across the street and missed out on the photo.  We're also missing a cousin from Arizona, Texas, and California - as well as 2 missionaries.  But hey - it's the best we could do!  It's was great!
Here are all of my cousins with my grandma (minus the 5 I mentioned!)
We had such a great time.  The girls had so much fun playing with all of their cousins.  More pictures and details to come.  I am so grateful for my family!!  At moments, it's so hard to live so far away, but when we get together, it's as if we've always been around.  (Yes Jared, we've been gone for 4 years, not 2!)  I'm so grateful for everyone for hosting us and being so awesome!  We love you all!!

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Utah Trip with the Broderick's

I guess it's time to post about our summer vacation this year!! My parents were returning from serving a mission for our church. They had been in Russia for 3 years and we were so excited to see them!  We had a blast, flying across the country to UTAH to visit grandma's and grandpa's and many of our cousins!

We had a great trip. Flying with three kids is always an adventure. I had the luxury of having Shawn with us for just one of three flights. It was definitely cute to watch the girls pull their suit cases along! They each felt so important!
Ahh....if only this seating arrangement lasted!  Love my girls.
and I love my husband!  Unfortunately for us girls, Shawn was coming back to GA on a different day and so he had different flights than us.  We all made it together from Atlanta to Dallas.  Then he got to get on a plane about 10 minutes after we landed, while the girls and I got to hang out at the airport for two extra hours.  If you remember our trip from last year, I'm not a huge fan of the Dallas airport.  (look how little the girls were!)  But, we survived and made it safely to Utah!
Shawn's parents now live in Salt Lake City!  It's great that we could visit both families in one trip!  We got to spend the first week with them and had so much fun. The girls loved riding TRAX downtown to Temple Square.  I think it was the highlight of their day!
 Although they are a silhouette, I'm glad I have a picture of each of them in front of the Salt Lake Temple.

 Here is the crew in front of the assembly hall.

 I loved going with my family to listen to the Christus message.  This holds such a special place in my heart.  I served a mission in the Los Angeles California mission, at the visitors center there at the temple.  I listen to this message many times each day - and taught many people more about the church.  Although I tried to explain it to my kids, I can't wait until they are older and really understand the significance of our Savior and the message that He shares with us!  (and although we were not in LA, it was still great to be near the Christus Statue!)
 They girls had SO MUCH FUN swimming in grandma and grandpa Broderick's backyard.  I think they could have done that everyday, all day and been completely satisfied with the trip!

 Adalyn enjoying a book in Deseret Book. 
We were a little rushed by the time we made it to the conference center.  So we quickly peeked in to see inside.  You forget how massive it is.  Then we made it on the last tour to the top - which is always so breath taking!
On top of the conference center!

We were able to go back up a few times after we left.  The girls got to meet their "great" grandma and grandpa Broderick - which was such a treat.  I'm glad we were able to see them!  They live in Tucson and came up, just to visit us!  Not really, it just happened that our trips overlapped - so we were grateful to see them!  The girls had a fun night at the Broderick Family bbq.  They ended up getting in a BIG water fight with grandpa and loved it!
Chuck, Cindy and Angela, our great hosts!
Great Grandma and Grandpa Broderick! 
Grandma and Grandpa Broderick who are also GREAT!!
We had such a fun time!  Thanks again, to grandma and grandpa Broderick for taking good care of us!

Thursday, August 9, 2012

First Day of School 2012

Yesterday was the first day of school for Andie and Ali. Andie is starting Kindergarten and Ali is starting Pre-K (all day!) They were up at 5:55am, asking if it was time to get dressed. They were definitely excited.

Andie, Age 5 - Kindergarten
Ali, age 4 - Pre-K
Cute girls in their uniforms. 
Adalyn was also excited, I think to send them out the door.  Shawn and I were home yesterday and this little girl was SO excited to have mom and dad to herself!  When it came time to pick the girls up Shawn said, "Adalyn, let's go get Andie and Ali!"  She replied, "Nooooooooooooooo!"  However, they all played nice together once they were home.
Now, it's day two.  Andie had a hard time waking up and said, "I don't want to go to school my whole life!"  Ali was just as excited as the first day.  I dropped them off and they were holding hands walking into the school.  So cute!  Shawn went back to school today as well.  I'm wondering what to do with just one child?  It's been over 4 years since I just had one.  No worries though, we'll be plenty of busy when baby boy comes in October.  So for now, we will enjoy the peace and quiet!