Monday, October 22, 2012

The Peppers Go To Washington (State, that is)


Before you start reading this post, I suggest you carve out a few hours of your time. Seriously, this is a fatty post.

Okay, you've been warned. So. The kids and I went to Washington for THREE weeks.And yes, I took both kids by myself. They were actually amazing. Just see for yourself:

Don't let Gracie fool you, she left her headphones on for about 20 seconds.

Anyhoooo, let's get back to the vacation. So, so many pictures.

From left to top and down the backwards "L" (This is how they will all be)
- Watching Finding Nemo in 3D. My brother is an Assistant Manager at a movie theater, which means free movies!!
- Johnny and Luke watching Finding Nemo.
- The kids' play area. I loved that little special table for them. 
- Grace and my dad. So cute!
- Making Drew snickerdoodles to mail to him.
- He worked hard on those snickerdoodles :)
- Gracie getting more nails did
- Wrestling with Grandpa

- Grandma reading to Luke in his bed
- Oh yeah...Luke's bed :) He slept in a tent all three weeks! He loved it.
- Being a goofy boy
- The fort! My mom put sheets on their dining room table to make a fort. They loved playing Marble Works in there.
- More fort playing
- There's a place close to my parent's house called Sherwood Forest. It's a forest with a walkway through it. It takes about 30 minutes to hike through.
- The bushes and trees and foliage isn't taken care of so it kind of eats you as you walk through
- There were several bridges, also. 

- Chuck E. Cheese! 
- Gracie & Chuck
- My lil brother won 50 tickets for the kids!
- The kids on the Venga bus
- Chuck, Grandpa, & Luke
- Luke was surprisingly good at this basketball game
- Get them duckies!

- Luke with his bubble gun. It started leaking on Uncle Johnny but he was a good sport about it.
- Lovin' the bubbles
- Shooting them off the deck
- Bubbles
- My parents bought this Larry Boy for Luke and his ears actually stick. Poor Larry was left this way several times.
- Luke talking to his daddy via Skype.
- Gracie LOVES stuffed animals
- Every morning my mom would put a toy in this little cabinet. Luke would wake up and go check his "door." Lots of Veggietales and Toy Story toys.

- There's a harbor in Aberdeen and while we were there there were 2 ships in the harbor. We were able to go on one. Luke loved it! He thought it was a pirate ship :)
- Luke next to a teenie tiny cannon
- Gracie showing her pirate spirit
- Grandpa & Pirate Luke
- Grandma & Pirate Luke
- Look! Pirate Uncle Johnny
- Just chillin' on a ship. NBD.
- Pirate chicks

- We went bowling and obviously he loved it.
- Luke beat most of us...just not Grandpa. Of course, Grandpa was in a couple of bowling leagues back in the day.
- I think he likes Larry Boy. What do you think?
- Luke's awesome Glasses straw. I guess this is what he'd look like with glasses!
- Sharing with his sister. What a sweetie pie.
- Luke became slightly obsessed with Captain America while we were there because Uncle Johnny wore so much Captain America clothes
- At a bounce house place. Gracie wasn't so good at it. Neither was I.
- Gracie. What a beauty.

- Grandpa & his baby girls
- This was at Chuck E. Cheese. 
- Grandpa bought the kids some cool Chuck E. cups
- The kids loved sharing ice cream with Grandpa. Look at Gracie's mouth! She's like a baby bird!
- Luke is no better. Little birds.
- After the bounce house place we went to Denny's. Aren't these cups cute?
- Waiting for our food at Denny's
- Watching Veggietale clips on the internet with Grandma.

- One weekend we went to Seattle and saw the Space Needle. Pretty cool stuff.
- For some reason, Luke starting calling my dad "Pickle Nose." He's putting toy pickles on his nose here.
- Watching more Veggietale clips on my dad's iPad.
- On the Monorail in Seattle
- In our hotel room in Seattle
- Gracie had a lollipop and she got NASTY. We had to go buy a new shirt, she slobbered so much.
- Luke and his lollipop. He's kind of OCD about getting dirty. He's extremely clean.
- Cuteness.

- While in Seattle we went to a place called Pike Place Market. It was awesome.
- The front of the marketplace
- My bro bought a leather-bound journal with homemade paper. 
- These fish sellers would throw fish back and forth to each other. I think it's just for entertainment.
- The boys and their Captain America fetish.
- The FIRST Starbucks. That must be old.
- The gum wall! Super gross.
- Just a sign on a bus stop.

- Pumpkin decorating! I figured carving would be way to messy so we just painted on ours. That's Larry Boy's call signal.
- Gracie coloring on hers with a crayon.
- Luke had to supervise my mom to make sure she got it right.
Uncle Johnny hard at work.
- Luke, Larry Boy, and Grandma. Her pumpkin turned out great!
- Johnny. He's seriously obsessed.
- Tubby time for Gracie
- Tubby time for Lukers

- My dad and I went on a date. We went to Casa Mia's (Italian restaurant) and then Dairy Queen.
- Luke needs his Larry friends next to him on his pillow
- Captain Adorable!
- Making their own pizzas bought from Papa Murphey's
- Aberdeen. This is the view from the top of the mountain my parents live on
- I love my little brother
- My dad's work office.
- They love their Uncle Johnny!!

- Three generations! I love my mama. (And my daughter).
- My parent's house from the street. You can't tell how long it is from the front.
- A pretty house in Aberdeen! I loved it.
- The babies and grandparents the day we left :(

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Texas Trip (Wrap Up)

I was thinking how I should post about my recent Washington trip but then I realized I never finished posting about the Texas trip! I'm such a slacker. But here it is! Better late than never.

Here's some of the last pictures:

Luke and Drew went on a little date to the Legoland in Grapevine.

Meanwhile.... we took Gracie to Build-A-Bear! Since she loves stuffed animals, she was in heaven.

Stuffing her doggie.

Washing her doggie.

More washing.

On a carousel with Grandma.

That's all of the pictures. However, on the drive home, Drew and I made a list of a bunch of stuff we wanted to remember, so you'll get to see them too. There's three different catergories: Food, Events, and Memorable Moments.

Chick-fil-A, McDonald's, Wendy's, Taco Bueno (3 times!), In-N-Out (Drew and I on a date), Chicken Express (one of Drew's favorites), Whataburger, Domino's, Olive Garden, Spring Creek, Chili's. 
 - Misc: Frozen yogurt, Sno cones (upon Drew's insistence), QT soft serve ice cream
 - Drew's work food: The Ranch, Japanese cuisine

- Rangers game  - Hawaiian Falls  - Legoland  - Batman movie  - Cam Thorpe's wedding reception  - Friend Reunion party  - Painted Door  - Ecolab visits (for Drew)  - Date night  - Gracie & Grandma Spa night  - Shopping  - Half-price books (Drew went a little crazy with his Far Side comics)  - Dinner with the Fackrell family  - Basketball (Drew & Matt)  - Craft day with Emily  - Lawn work (I discovered a hidden talent for trimming bushes)  - Arlington 4th ward & Mansfield 1st ward visits  - Luke's 1st Converse shoes  - Gracie's 1st Build-A-Bear  - Family Pics at the Thorpe's  - Taken (creepy movie Matt made us watch)

Memorable Moments:

Play Room: Mama Pepper transformed the upstairs into an awesome play room for the kids!

John & his Motorcycle: We drove up to the Pepper's house and saw a motorcycle. Drew: "Only one of my friends would be dumb enough to buy a motorcycle." Me: "John?" Haha, we love you John!

Brett Thorpe: I'm not even going to repeat the story here but Drew seriously laughed SO hard for about 5 minutes. If you want to know the story, ask Drew.

The Dog Debacle: Kev & Martha brought their 2 dogs. One night one of them got out. The next day one of the neighborhood guys told Mama Pepper that the dog had dragged a poor old man down the street and was pretty beat up. Mama & Dad Pepper stressed about it until the went and talked to the old man. Turns out it wasn't Kevin & Martha's dog. Phew!

Braxton Thorpe & Panera: I don't know why I thought this story was so funny! Probably because Lainie is such a good story teller :) If you wanna know this story, ask Lainie. It'll be worth your time.

Bubba: Matt calls Luke Bubba and he would play Hide & Go Seek with Luke. He'd wander the house calling "Bubba, where are you?" and then Luke would look for Matt... so cute!

The Middle: Drew was really excited to show his family one of our favorite shows: The Middle. Matt was so not enthused about it. Even after he watched it. That's a pretty typical reaction.

Dad Pepper & Matt: Matt was so funny with his dad! He'd follow Dad Pepper around saying "Hey, what are you doing?" "What are you going to do now?" Dad Pepper finally asked: "Can I please just go to the bathroom alone?!" 

Chubby Checker: Matt insisted that Drew had gained a lot of weight (which he hasn't) so Matt would walk around the house singing Chubby Checker. He even recruited Dad Pepper to start singing, too.

Haley Leavitt: At Cam's wedding reception, we saw tons of friends. It was so great. Of course, our good friend Serene was there. And Drew LOVES teasing her. And now that she has 3 girls, he likes teasing them. One of her daughters, Haley, who's around 3 I think, had gotten a couple of bug bites on her face at the reception. Drew told Haley she had bites on her face and she got really worried and started crying. Drew's such a brat. 

Leaving Ranger's game: The Ranger's game was going pretty late into the night. Knowing the rest of the family could be driven home by Drew in our car, Mama Pepper & I decided to take the kids home. We left and were pretty far away when I realized I had Drew's keys. Back to the stadium we went. The problem was the game was over and there was no way we could get to anybody or the car. I ended up running the keys over to Drew.

Sunday dinner: We had a dinner after Sunday to see a lot of our friends. It was so much fun. Everyone brought something to eat and we just hung out and enjoyed each other's company.

Have you made it to the end? If you did, congrats! And hopefully you enjoyed it. Or some of it.