Monday, February 25, 2013

Blizzard 2013

We never get hyped up about a "big snow" because that means a big wave of moisture moving through the TX panhandle and that just doesn't happen often. Period.
AND people usually get hyped up over a 1-3" weather forecast, so are just wait-and-see people.
While we were in Taos, we heard that they were going to get hit with another big snow so we wanted to get out of town before it hit.  Low & behold, Amarillo was due for it's own big snow as I came to find out upon checking my phone for the weather.
And guess what?!?  We seriously got hit. And it was incredible!
Kaden heading out at the end of the day, after a good 14 hours of blowing snow.
From walking around the backyard, there were spots ranging from 12" to 3 FEET!
Posing on the north side of our house where the biggest drifts were!

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Skiing in Taos, New Mexico

Two weeks ago we planned a ski trip with Dan & Heather with the idea of putting Kaden & Danni in ski school for the first time and our families making a weekend in Taos, New Mexico.  Unfortunately, the weather wasn't aware of our plans and there was a blizzard on top of the mountain. As hard as it was, we made the logigal "adult" decision to postpone our trip for two weeks and try again. 
So on Friday morning our bags were packed (with Schatzi & Owen packed for a weekend at Nonnie & Papa's), the car was loaded with books, music, snacks & pre-schooler entertainment, and we were ready to hit the open road...  When suddenly I got a panicked call from Heather around 9:45, literally minutes before we were all set to walk out the door. 
Danni was running a fever for 101°F...
So we had to make another agonizing decision... To go, or not to go...
It almost seemed as if we weren't supposed to go.
I think Heather & I silently shed a few tears during our phone conversation but we (the Dows) decided to go ahead & go.  After all, we had been talking to Kaden about it for weeks and Ben & I hadn't been skiing for the past two years.
And it was a good thing they stayed behind because Danni ended up having strep throat!
Scenery from the car... from my phone... so you can imagine what it really looked like!
The first thing we did after arriving in town was drive up the mountain to rent our books & skis and get Kaden enrolled in ski school. 
It was snowing like crazy up there-- big, fat, beautiful flakes that clung to Kaden's long lashes.
 We went out to dinner at Taos Pizza Out Back...
One of the BEST hole-in-the-wall restaurants in town (maybe even the best, period)!
We were a little nervous for Kaden- going to ski school for the day without Danni or us. 
He was a little concerned at first, but once we were outside in the snow, he seemed to forget about being worried.
The previous night it snowed 6" and we got to ski in the best conditions we've ever experienced!  Fresh powder everywhere!  No wind.  Breathtakingly beautiful scenery in every direction.
 Ben coming down
Kaden had a good day at ski school.  We spied on some of the 3-year-olds as they worked on "the zipper" which looked like a walkalator that led up to a slight incline that lasted maybe 20 yards...
The kids stood & rode it to the top and then practiced (staying upright) skiing straight, snowplowing/stopping, and making slight turns.
We were able to talk to the instructor at the end of the day and he told us that Kaden was athletic and did well getting the hang of it. 
Yes, we were all sad that the Richards couldn't come along this weekend, but we are so glad that we still decided to come and ski on our own.  Kaden got to learn a new skill AND Ben & I got to spend the day skiing together.
This is definitely something I'd like to take the boys to do every year.
Owen ended up having a great weekend with Nonnie & Papa (his FIRST overnighter and time away from us), sleeping through the nights and content throughout. 

Friday, February 15, 2013

Happy Valentine's

Happy Valentine's Day
cookies for Kaden's Valentine's party
batch of sugar scrubs we made for Kaden's teachers, etc.
Kaden doing one of his favorite QUIET activities while Owen took a nap.
Owen enjoying himself in the middle of Kaden's preschool room during their Valentine's "party"
Reading a library book at home with daddy... at least one of them is paying close attention.

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Big Snow

Proof again that it SNOWS here in the Texas panhandle (for all of you Missouri folks).
We got at least 6" in our backyard by the time school let out. 
Kaden insisted on playing outside so I got a few items together and wondered how long he would last... I couldn't believe it when he was still out there playing 45 minutes later!
Do you like my "boots" mom made?
Here you can get a little better look at how much snow we got... Enough to fill up the wagon.
Enjoying the outdoors

Monday, February 11, 2013

Gatti's Circus

Heather is always coming up with fun things to do around town and this weekend was no exception.  Our two families were originally supposed to drive to Taos, New Mexico this weekend for a ski trip, but that had to be postponed last-minute due to blizzard conditions on the mountain.  She and I were more than a little sad that we weren't getting out of town.
Luckily she came up with alternative plans. Not quite skiing, but something to do with the kids.
Bound together, leading the way in and waiting in line for some cotton candy.
 Whether or not he wants to admit it, Ben wanted to come to the circus.

The Richard Family, February 2013
 Danni getting to ride on the pony.
Tasting and LOVING cotton candy!
 At first we were hesitant about bring Owen with us.  We had to wake him from his nap and we weren't sure how long he would be able to sit and watch. 
Owen did incredible!  Sat in his stroller and watched all of the action for the 1st 1/2 and then sat in my lap for the 2nd. 
Way to go Owen!

 Enjoying the show

 Elephants as the grand finale!
This is one of my favorite photos; Kaden & Danni look so happy!
 Everyone wanting to push Owen's stroller.


Saturday, February 9, 2013

What's Up?

It's been a while since my last set of posts around Christmas time. I'm not sure what has been going on, but we have been BUSY!
·         Owen is dangerously close to letting go of the furniture and walking on his own.
·         Kaden has a good imagination, plays with his puzzles almost every night (the puzzle with the cards that tell you what design to make) and loves going to the library every week to pick out new books and movies.
·         I just started a new semester at Amarillo College, teaching Zumba to a full group and am still teaching plenty of classes at the Townclub.  I have also been trying to find time to run as I am training to run the St. Louis marathon with Kyle... There, I said it... it's in writing.
·         Ben is slogging though the school year.  (I think this might be his last year of teaching.)
January in (iPhone) pictures:
Kaden with his puzzle and Owen with his favorite blankie. 
There have been lots of indoor activities as it has been COLD and WINDY most days.
Although our house is kind of a wreck, these train tracks have been a huge hit this winter and make a daily appearance. 
Owen lovin' his bath time!
Kaden loves to help in the kitchen; always eager to pull up a kitchen chair and stand at the counter.  Finally able to use the hand mixer on his own. 
All bundled up... and then in his typical sleep position- on TOP of his blanket.
Notice all of the bath toys that get tossed OUT of the tub?
Yes, we still have THE box from Christmas.
A little bit of playing at the park in Wichita and then in the backyard.
Owen LOVES being outside and is crabby when he isn't out enough.
playing at Cheer Texas one cold Friday morning.
Dinner date with Danni (we were brave enough to bring Kaden & Danni out to a nice dinner with us).
Trying on a pair of ski goggles for our upcoming ski trip in February. 
Kaden & Danni are going to ski school!