Warning - a lot of pictures....... you can totally skip this if you want to
Aren't they just the cutest family? I'm sad that they can't come home, yet it gives them a chance to establish their own traditions. We had them open our gifts the first night. We skyped in Splenda and videotaped it all. So much fun to see them happy!
At the USMC family Holiday Festival (of which I wrote a little bit about here), we noticed that they hung the sign that had been made in October. Handprints of the children of Marine's. We found Chloee's right off
We had lazy mornings just snuggling, having "conversations", and playing games
Lunch at McSlop shop is always good
Taking in a movie..... I loved the Muppet Movie, but Chloee was a little bored. I think it was really targeted to those of us that grew up watching the show.
Some playing at the park
A burying Mimi in the pillow pets
Their ward party was "A night in Bethlehem" Including a small petting zoo outside at the entrance
Chloee wasn't particularly interested in petting anything. Not even the bunny. We tried, but she wanted nothing to do with them
They started the decorations outside with the tiki torches and palm fronds everywhere
The missionaries were stationed at the entrance and gave you your gold coins to enter the town and purchase your food
I have never seen something decorated so nicely and as authentic as you could possibly get within a ward cultural hall. Almost everyone was in costume (we weren't)
They had a large canopy over the city
And a cobble stone path through town
Families brought their own blankets to spread out and eat on
Lot's of scenery to make you feel like you really were in a different place. This one was set up so you could pose for pictures if you wanted
In the center of the town was a water well. You could get fresh water for your drinking glass from there if you wanted. NGL - pretty cool
At the start of the food line. Chloee asking for her kids meal : )
It was a nice dinner that many ward members pitched in to provide. Pulled pork over rice, salad, veggies, fruits, pita bread and hummus and then a variety of desserts to choose from
After we ate, and before the program, Chloee was humming with happiness and silliness! "Take a picture of me Mimi" was repeated over and over again!
Seriously, aren't those the most gorgeous eyes you have ever seen?
The young men were dressed as the Roman soldiers - nice touch
For the program they played a video depicting the birth of Jesus and then we all sang a few hymns
After that, the kids all lined up in a different area of the building to see Santa!
Chloee found a friend from her Primary class
At home, Chloee had made a Christmas countdown and loved taking a ring off every morning
We tried to build a gingerbread house from a kit
It was fun, but the end result was an EPIC fail! Chloee didn't care, she still loved it!
My days went by way too fast! Before I could even blink it was time to take me back to the airport! : (
I'm so glad that Splenda makes it a priority for us to visit. I'm glad that they are as close as they are (Can you imagine if he got stationed in Japan?) And I'm more than glad to be able to be a small part of their cute family!
Merry Christmas to my SoCal kids!