The weekend before Christmas, we drove down to New Orleans on our way to spend a few days in Thibodaux. I have tried for the past few years to go to Celebration in the Oaks and every year, something has come up to where we couldn't go!! This year, I WAS DETERMINED. Come what may, we would be there!!!!
Even after driving though fog and misty rain for 3 hours, I was still in high spirits!! I couldn't wait to show the kids the millions of lights, the huge carousel, all the sculptures in the Storyland, the hot chocolate and Christmas cookies.. I remember going as a kid and lovingggg ittt sooo muchhhh!! Thank you for those tickets, Entergy!!! :))
We arrived about an hour before the park opened. It was frigid outside and raining.. so we decided to bundle up and run across the street to Morning Call, a mainly coffee and beignet restaurant. It was warm, it was open, and it was a perfect place to wait.
Andddd why not have a little hot chocolate, Cafe Au Lait, and beignets while we were there?! :))
Eating and drinking like a Nola native!!
Hahaa, oh my gosh!! TWINS!!
I forget how New Orleans-y New Orleans can be, ha!! The people with no clothes on, even in freezing weather, the men in berets yelling at the football game on, the old couple sharing lots of PDA in the corner.. We weren't in Kansas anymore!! ALL THE EYES were on us as we sat down with our 4 babies at the table.. No one seemed to be able to believe we would have this many children on purpose. People openly gawked and I just prayed that we would be a light. Something different. We prayed together and had then had the best time getting powdered sugar all over our faces, sipping hot cocoa, and talking about all the things we were about to see..
We paid, layered our jackets back on, and ran through the rain back to the park, just in time to see this flashing across the screens:
NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!! Y'all, I seriously cried. Tears sprang to my eyes and I couldn't even talk as Wade had to explain to the kids that it was closed and we wouldn't be able to go in. And as I pouted and grumbled and my heart broke for them, the kids responded in a way that made me so proud. They were disappointed, but understood. No crying. No whining. Just sad little faces.. that lit up the moment we saw Little Bo Peep.
The kids had so much fun just playing on these big figurines outside of the gates. I don't know if they even realized we hadn't driven all the way there just for these!!
So while we couldn't go in (and I am still fighting back tears here - HUGE knot in my throat), the kids did love taking their picture with everything they could see!!
We got back in the car as I promised we would NEVER come back to New Orleans ever, ever again.. (How big of a baby am I ?! I really did a valuable lesson from Wadie and the kids this night!!)
I drove an hour to Thibodaux where a warm fire, delicious dinner, and wonderful company were waiting!!
The kids put on their new Christmas jammies and snacked on all of Nana's yummy treats!!
The next night, it was time to open presents!!!
Samuel got his gorgeous wooden rocking horse first and then it was Andrew's turn to unwrap his big gift!!
It's the one thing he specifically asked for this year!!!! 6 years old and finally big enough for his first BB gun!!!
Guns and BBs and targets.. this little boy was SO HAPPY!!
Grant's turn... he got a brand-new, big boy bike!!
I was shocked, but he hopped on there and rode around like an old pro!!
How cute, he even matched his bike!!
The other boys started playing with the gun..
And Andrew got some expert help from Uncle Dusten!!
Vannie's gift would be coming in just a few days, but it would be SO worth the wait!!
Nana and Vannie!! We had gone for a walk earlier and found a whole area filled with pecans!! Of course, I made all the kids stop and fill up all their pockets, ha!!
Paw, carving up our Christmas dinner!!
Wadie with one of our most favorite parts of family get-togethers - Aunt Rebecca's perfect Mac and Cheese!!!
Oh my goodness, when can we eat this again?!!
And then it was Wadie's turn to open his present!!
Wadie got a new gun, too!!!!!!
Have y'all ever seen that game, Watch Ya Mouth?? You wear a mouthpiece and say a phrase and everyone has to guess what you're saying?? It. Was. Hysterical!!
See!! Even Samuel liked it!! :)
Oh my goodness, hahaa!!
We laughed and laughed and only after a million times of trying could we guess what Rebecca was saying!!
And I died when Nan said, "Well, this is not a very attractive game..." Ahhhh, hahaha!!
The following morning, the kids woke up extra early to go to COOKING CLASS!! They did a mini Christmas cooking camp and it was the most adorable thing I've ever seen. Such a perfect gift, Nan and Paw!! Thank you!!!
And while all the cats are away, the mice will play.. ;))
Grant loved shooting that gun!!
Samuel (and Wade!) did, too!!
Over 2 days, the kids made homemade snowmen pizza, Christmas bark, lemon cookies, and cake pops!! They loooooved it!!! And I loved getting to sample it.. ;))
When are we going into business, girls?!
After their second cooking class, the kids came home to pack up and prepare to head for home.. but only after a few more shooting matches.
Look at these little wild west sharpshooters, y'all!!! Stinking CUTE!
As always, we left with Thibodaux with full bellies, full hearts, and a full carload, ha!! I am so thankful for our wonderful Poole family that gives so generously to us.. not only through gifts and delicious food, but through their thoughtfulness, kindness, and love to us!! It was a merry, merry Christmas in Thibodaux indeed!!