Friday, January 09, 2009

Christmas in Nebraska

On Christmas Eve we drove up to Nebraska to meet my sister and her family at my parents' house. The first thing on the agenda was going to my family's church for their children's Christmas program--the one that I was part of growing up.
Gabrielle sitting on Grandpa Reinke's lap during the children's program...trying to be quiet can be hard!

Our family after church at my Uncle Howard and Aunt Marlys' house--getting together with the Reinke side of the family. Unfortunately I didn't take any more pictures. And, Nick ended up taking the two little girls home for some sleep--thanks, honey!

Gabrielle opening her gifts on Christmas Day.

Uncle Dan and cousin Matthew opening gifts--he got a wooden train set which he wanted to play with all the time!

Gabrielle with her new bath toys.

Getting a whole stack of books from Grandma Reinke--thanks!

Me feeling a little crazy over Christmas!

Grandpa and Grandma Reinke watching everyone else open gifts...and leaving most of theirs until the end.

Matthew with his new goggles and play nail gun that we got him for Christmas--looks like fun!

Aunt Katherine with Samantha--looks like she would rather just eat the gifts instead of open them up to see what's inside.

Matthew watching Gabrielle with her new doll from Grandma Reinke and the wooden cradle that Great-uncle Howard and Grandpa Reinke made for her.

Katherine crying...this was her favorite book growing up. My mom just happened to find a second copy that she gave to Samantha for Christmas. Tears of joy had to be explained to Matthew after that because he asked what was "wrong" with his mommy. Good memories!

Matthew "pimping-up" his new bike with Gabi's pink tires from her baby stroller that hadn't been assembled yet.

Matthew trying out his bike. Unfortunately it was really cold outside on Christmas, and the carpet didn't help him pedal very far, so he had to wait until later in the week when it warmed up (to a balmy 30 degrees!).

Some of my cousins (and some of their kids) who were at the Hoops Christmas (my mom's side of the family).

My mom and her sisters (we missed Uncle Lee, Aunt Carol, and their families this year!). L to R: Lavon & Fern Bohling, Delmar & Janice Reinke, Del & Jeanne Braithwait, and Dean & Deanna Hobelmann

Getting all three cousins to sit together. Matthew and Gabrielle were busy watching a movie, so we planted Samantha in the middle. She didn't stay there long though, because she was off and crawling pretty quickly after that!

Matthew trying out his new wagon with Samantha in for a ride-of-her-life. I'm not sure that she had as much fun riding as Matthew did pulling her around.

Of course, Gabrielle wanted to get in and try it too.

Holding my two favorite little girls.

Gabrielle playing with my old shopping cart that my mom still had in our basement. Can you believe that it's in such good shape, and I got it for Christmas when I was her age? Crazy! :)

More pretending with the shopping cart.

Nick with his hands full. It started out that he had the two girls on his lap. But, Matthew wanted on, so he got to hold Samantha. Doesn't look like Gabrielle's too impressed with sharing her Daddy!

Samantha fit pretty good into Gabrielle's new doll cradle that she got from Grandpa Reinke for Christmas. They had matching sweaters for their dresses--great minds think alike, huh Katherine? :)

All three cousins for one more picture after church on Sunday...not a bad picture at all, if I might say so! I wasn't expecting them to all look so cheery at the same moment in time!

Our only Christmas picture that we took as a family.