With our big move just days away, we decided to go see Mama Hop and Aunt Leanne while they are still a toddler-tolerable road trip away. The Diva hug fest commenced as soon as we walked in the door!
Considering how difficult it is to pack up and travel with two little ones, Mama Hop and Aunt Leanne usually come to us. It was a fun change of pace to be on their turf.
My big sister showed me the fundamentals of modeling.
Both girls were eager to spend time with Neko, Mama Hop's (in)famous Siamese cat. To add an extra element of entertainment, we brought our ferocious not-quite-4-lb Maltese, Lillian, to challenge Neko's "alpha" title. Bark, hiss, scamper, chase, repeat was the soundtrack to our weekend.
The gorgeous and conceited cat wasn't the only entertainment available to the girls; they also had a fantastic time exploring Mama Hop's breakable treasures including her global bell collection...
...and her prized baby grand piano...
...which houses the shrine to our little clan.
Mama "MacGyver" Hop set out to prove how you can baby proof a home with nothing more than a few rubber bands and paper clips. Merryn happily accepted that challenge and raised Mama Hop one set of antique china.
It's a good thing Aunt Leanne was there to lay down the law and keep those little girls in line.
We find that spending time outdoors is a perfect way to entertain toddlers.
The benefit is twofold: 1. If they're outdoors, they're not inside tearing up the house and
2. All that fresh air and exercise wears 'em out so they go to bed early and sleep really well!
Leanne put Merryn in her bed. Merryn thought she was a big deal!
Our other weekend activities consisted of going to church (so Mama Hop could show off those grand babies, of course), eating at Mama Hop's second choice Mexican restaurant (first choice was closed), a little shopping (Folks, I am a Maxxonista!), and enjoying time together as a family around a table full of Mama Hop's delicious home cooking.
Leanne insists everyone smell her after she gets out of the shower. She says "Do I smell clean?" It's a strange tradition but it's important to Leanne so we play along.
One of the funniest moments of the weekend involved Aunt Leanne's signature pose.
I pointed the camera at Josie and asked her to "pose like Aunt Leanne" and she whipped this out:
Yes, our 3 year-old's size 2T pants are sagging worse than Justin Bieber's.
They both crack me up!
It was sad to have to say goodbye to Mama Hop and Aunt Leanne but we know we'll see them as often as possible regardless of the increased distance between us. Furthermore, Mama Hop has learned how to Skype so we "see" each other all the time!
Just a warning that the blog may be neglected for awhile as we set out on our moving adventure. While Travis' company sends movers to pack up our stuff and load the truck, we still have to pack up the essentials for this family of four (plus Lillian) in anticipation of what could be a 10 day hotel stay (hopefully less)! I am currently procrastinating packing as we speak :-)
We will try our best to update you along the journey up north but we can't promise. Either way, we will take lots and lots of photos and we can't wait to post again from our new house as our new adventure begins!
Footnote: While at Mama Hop's house, I swiped some photo albums so that I could scan and share some more childhood photos of Aunt Leanne and I. I got some priceless material that I can't wait to reveal!