Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Easter and Crawfish in Lousiana

We left at 5am in the morning so the kids would sleep the majority of the way! It worked. Cooper only cried for about the last hour!!! When we got back to Louisiana, we grabbed SHRIMP AND OYSTER PO BOYS (subs) from Old Tyme Grocery. They are so delicious! Everytime we go to Louisiana, we get one. Who would have thought that fried oysters and shrimp make great sandwiches?

Then we drove to Chris' grandma's house, Grandma Zo, and visited with her. I crashed and when I woke back up 2 hours later it was time to go to dinner at Chris' dad's house for a crawfish boil! They were celebrating Doug's (step-brother) birthday and had 20 family members over!
I've never been to/had a crawfish boil! They bought about 100 lbs of crawfish to eat!!! Like shrimp with their heads left on, they are a little intimidating to look at and think 'I am going to eat you and you will taste good.' However, they are good to eat! For me, it was time consuming to get the shells off and harvest the yummy meat! Their shells are harder than shrimp and I got a few little ouchies from peeling them! (I don't know if that is the word that one would use to describe it!) Look at the size of my plate! I love it and wish it were that size at home!Cadence and Cooper visited with dog that was the size of these baby ponies! Cooper ABSOLUTELY loves dogs!!!We hung out at Melvin's and Barbara's most of the evening. It rained hard and was so beautiful! The kids liked playing in Grandpa's toy room with the other family that was there.

Sunday, we attended the Lafayette Ward where Chris was baptized. Chris talked with some of his friends there. I talked with some of mine (from Snow College.) The world is small when you are a Mormon! The kids looked cute in their Easter clothes. When Cooper wears his tie and vest, he is just smashing!!! We took this in front of Zo's grapefruit tree which she is so proud of! Cadence didn't want to wear the little jacket that I brought for this dress.I tried getting a picture of Cooper in his outfit all by himself, but he didn't want to be put down and he didn't want Zo to hold him. He wanted his mommy! He is still very handsome when he is mad!!!We tried to talk Zo into going to Melvin's for Easter dinner, but she declined. Barbara always cooks a feast. I thought this dinner would be different because Melvin had nose surgery while we were in Texas and her mom, Ella, had surgery right before we got there, but there was no disappointment on my part! They were like 4 kinds of meats, rice, gravy, sweet potatos, eggplant, fruit, veggies, cakes, cookies, brownies, pecan pie, etc. I was in heaven! Cooper loved the sweet potatoes and had orange poop for a couple of days!

After dinner, we visited with all the family that came to celebrate. This is Chris' dad, Melvin, and his brother, Ronald. Dee, Ron's wife, made the tastiest eggplant dish I have ever tasted! Loved it!!!! It was fun talking to Britney, Dee's daughter. Cadence thought she was the coolest!!!

Cadence loved having so many little kids around! This is Kaiden, Aaron's daughter. (Chris' step brother)

The kids enjoyed the car, jeep, ball, gas station, walker, big wheel and all the other toys in Grandpa's toy room.

When we arrived back at Zo's house, we heard more of her amazing stories. She loves to talk! She played the piano for us and Cooper wanted to try. Zo held Cooper while he banged on the keys! She thinks he is such a good baby and is so handsome!Daddy and Cooper had some bonding time on the piano too!

We all slept well that night!

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Aquarium Visit and Saying Goodbye to Texas!

The last day of our visit in Texas we went to the Texas State Aquarium. Kaitlyn and Courtney have year passes. We haven't seen an aquarium since our year pass to the Utah aquarium ran out in September. This one is much bigger and better!

I just can get enough pictures of the three girls together. They are so cute!!! Best cousins having fun!

This is the big bridge in front of the aquarium that crosses a large river where the big boats go. There is a ship going under it in this picture!

Cooper loves to touch and play in water! Splashing is his game!
The first thing we enjoyed beyond the entrance was the dolphin show! They are definitely beautiful mammals! Cadence was waving to the dolphins and they waved back to her! She like how they jumped, splashed and played ball.

The aquarium was right on the water! This is the bay in the background!

The kids enjoyed watching the sea otters swim and play!
The sea turtles swam so gracefully!
We enjoyed the bird show and looking at the fountains and water displays!

The girls loved watching the dolphins from underneath the water! What an awesome picture!!! This Johnnie family thoroughly enjoyed the aquarium!
We ate burgers at a restaurant patio on the bay and went back to the cousins' house! It our last night there and was a time of more fun, dancing and ice cream!

Cooper loved playing with this truck and he officially started crawling on the soft carpet in their living room!

He also got lots of love from the three girls. Can you believe he is almost as big as Cadence? She has a very difficult time "holding" him.
It was also time to say good-bye to our family in Texas. I love this picture with all the grandkids (and me) making silly faces with Nana.
Cooper, Cadence and Nana for one last picture! We had to get a picture with our family and Chris' mom.

The other Johhnie family! Thanks for letting us crash at your house for a few days. We love you guys!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Texas Style Easter Party

On Thursday, Janie held an Easter Egg hunt/party for the girls and some of their friends. There were probably 30-40 people who were there (kids and parents). First, we ate a yummy spaghetti dinner. Following that was a super fun Easter egg hunt in a big yard with lots of trees and places for the eggs to be hid.

But the coolest part of the party was the giant Texas Easter Bunny who made a visit. Cooper didn't quite know what to think of it!!!
Cadence stayed a distance from it and said she was scared of it until the bunny left. Then she said, "That Easter bunny was cool." As a Texan would say, "Everything is bigger and better in Texas" including the Easter bunny!!!
As usual, the girls' baskets were loaded with eggs and candy!
One of the extremely fun aspects of many of the eggs Cadence found was the confetti that filled them. By the end of the evening, almost everyone had confetti in their hair. It was everywhere in the house and yard. The kids found much enjoyment from cracking the eggs on people and spreading the confetti!!!

Cadence even got confetti in Nana's hair!
After the Easter Egg Hunt, the pinata was hung from a tree! All the kids got a turn smacking it with a stick! Cooper needed a little help!
This was Cadence's first pinata. She thought it was quite cool! When she hit it, it barely moved! She is just so gentle!
After one of the adults smashed the pinata, the candy tumbled out and the kids filled their bags. At this age, Cadence really would have been happy with 2 or 3 pieces of candy. The excitement is just in trying new things!
Easter parties in Texas rock!

Hangin' At Home With The Cousins

Kaitlyn and Courtney have a really fun house and yard! They have a ton of awesome toys and a 2 acre yard full of trees and exploration area! Cadence and Cooper both found such joy playing at their house.

Cooper easily found things to chew on and put in his mouth!!! Cadence loved riding a mega-tricycle and mowing the sand.

She also enjoyed walking on tree trunks and the swing where she had to cross her legs.

Cooper absolutely LOVES dogs. He kept calling to Babe and I attempted to get him to ride the dog! What a good dog!
Cooper thoroughly enjoyed eating the dirt from the sand box and running the sand through his fingers and toes!
They all enjoyed playing in the sandbox with shovels, buckets and trucks!
Cadence thought the slide coming of the tree hut was the bomb! She went down it a million times!
Riding around in the princess car was a huge hit!
Of course, we had to dye eggs for the Easter Egg hunt.
The three girls could be the Three Musketeers or the Three Stooges! They are so cute together!!! They pretended the trees were horses and rode on them!

All three of them loved to dance and dress up! What darling clowns, princesses and rock stars! I love kids' imagination! What great friends!!!

Hanging at their home was a great time!