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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Home Sweet Home

Ryan & I arrived in my home town of Kansas City Wednesday morning. It was very early flight so it pretty much wiped us out for the day. We did get to spend most of the day with Ryan's best friend, Miles, who lives in Ohio. The last time we really got to spend any time with him was about a year and a half ago!! Miles originally had a flight the same day we arrived but was able to change it to the next day.
Our first priority when we got into town was to eat lunch at one of Ryan's favs, Mongolian BBQ. I have to admit it's pretty delicious.
Miles & Ryan (my mountain man)
After everyone was so full we could barely move, we headed down to the Plaza. This is one of my absolute favorite places in Kansas City, especially during the holidays. The rest of the afternoon was spend shopping and bumming around. It's a whole heck of a lot colder in KC then Houston so I tried to duck into every shop I saw. Eventually we got hungry again and decided to eat at another staple in KC, Jack Stacks a.k.a. the best BBQ you have ever tasted!! It used to be called Smoke Stacks when I was growing up. I have a lot of fond memories at this place.
Miles & Ryan enjoying their mouth watering food.
I love the ambiance at the plaza restaurant.
After dinner it was dark enough to take a few pictures of the plaza lights.
This place is magical at night. I might be a little bias too since this is where I got engaged.
Then we headed over to Crown Center (another gorgeous shopping area) where some family is staying at the Westin (where the Pioneer Woman stayed). Ryan's aunt and uncle where in town from Florida for a special celebration. Ryan's uncle, Tommy, is Susan's (Ryan's mom) brother.
Tish, Susan, Tommy, Papa, Ryan, Me & Miles
The special celebration that a lot of Susan's family came in town for a famous baseball player's 10 year wedding anniversary. They are renewing their vows over a three day celebration! You maybe wondering why Ryan's family was coming in town for that. Random fact about Ryan: He is related to this famous baseball player through marriage. I've never met him yet but Ryan has. The baseball player's wife is Susan's first cousin. I can't say his name on the Internet because of his privacy. I'll check with Susan if I can tell you about him later. :)

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Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Colorado Part 2

Picking up where I left off, after we opened up presents we got ready for the day. First on the agenda was to stop by our favorite bakery for some breakfast. This is us in our suite getting ready and Emily looking like a rock star.
The view of the kitchen. The suite was a little tight but there were two bedrooms and bathrooms upstairs that were a good size.
Here we are at the bakery (it also serves hot meals), it had a lot of character and was super packed on Christmas day. I think it was the only place open.
Harlan & Susan
Mary, Me, Emily & Sally
After breakfast the boys and I ventured out onto the slopes. It was by far the coldest day we were there!
I bundled up for the occasion. Even though it was poor visibility and freezing it was the longest time we were on the slopes. What was great about it was very few people to compete with.
Doesn't that look chilling?? It was the worst at the top of the mountains. The wind blew so hard it stung my face. After about 5 runs we called it a day.
We came back and got cleaned up for our Christmas dinner. Where else, but a Mexican restaurant! Our fav. :)
This was priceless. Ryan tried his first fried plantain and this was his reaction.
The next day was the family ski day. It was still pretty cold out so Susan stayed behind. She did join us for family pictures on the slopes later on. When I get those pictures back from the photographer I'll post them.
Can you tell it was sunnier out? It ended up being a gorgeous day.
Sally & Emily on the lifts.
My mom is in front and Ryan in the back. This was my mom's first time skiing in 10 years! She was a natural. I have to admit I was a little worried that she might get hurt, but she did great.
Mom & I at the bottom of the mountain. I finally got to use my snowboard my mom bought me almost 6 years ago!! I had a blast flying down the mountain on it.
Emily, Sally & Susan
The love birds. <3>It was one amazing trip that I have been waiting all year for. I will definitely be going back more often then every 6 years. I used to go every year back in the day. Hopefully it will become a tradition to go every other year now. Though, probably closer to spring time. It was freezing! :)

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Monday, December 28, 2009

Christmas in Colorado

Hello!! We survived our Christmas in Colorado and nobody broke any bones skiing. :) It will be a Christmas that our family will never forget. Since Ryan & I live in Houston and rarely get to see snow, we thought we would go to the snow. Plus our family had travel to see each other so why not all travel to CO?? Our destination was Breckenridge, one of every body's favorite ski towns. It is the most adorably quaint little town and has really great shopping.
(This picture is off a website.)
On our way into town we stopped off in Idaho Springs for some famous pizza (with honey on the crust) at Beau Jo's. I loved the decor and the view was incredible. It's hard to tell from this picture what we got to look at while we ate. I was a big fan of the mason jars as our drinking glasses.
The whole family. Sally looks a little stuffed. Ha!
Ryan, Susan, Sally, Mary, Emily & Harlan Emily & Ryan making friends with the manikin. Notice Ryan's new found facial hair.
I think the manikin is blushing!
Once we pulled into town it was getting pretty late. We stayed at Beaver Run Resort which is ski in, ski out and I totally recommend it! As soon as we got to our room we went exploring and found the outdoor hot tubs. It was such a neat experience to sit outside in the freezing cold with snow coming down, in a relaxing hot tub. Although, I didn't want to get out and back into the freezing cold air. It reminded me of hot springs! We ventured inside to the heated indoor/outdoor pool for awhile. This place was amazing. Afterward we were still a little chilled so we all sat in the sauna for awhile. Oh man, I want to go back!
The next morning we woke up early to hit the slopes. This is Ryan & I standing on our balcony admiring the view before we headed out.
My mom decided to stay in the first day and stick around with Sally, Susan and Emily. They all ended up going to the spa. Lucky girls. :) None of that for me... I'm a hardcore snowboarder! Ok, maybe not.
Emily stuck with us for a little bit before heading to the spa for a little R&R. Harlan, Ryan & I skied/boarded all three days.
That night we got back and cleaned up just in time for the local Methodist Church Christmas Eve service. It was packed to the brims and the pastor did an amazing job reminding us of the reason for the season.
Afterward we grabbed some food at the famous Eric's underground. We ended up eating there twice while we were in CO. It is one of Ryan's favorite spots.
I had to throw this picture in here because it is hilarious. It looks like Emily is yelling at Ryan and Ryan looks scared. That night we came back and played a mean game of Canasta before hitting the bed.
The next morning we woke up to a white Christmas!! I've never been anywhere outside of family's houses on Christmas so this was definitely a neat experience. Harlan was starting the fire so that everyone could snuggle in and open presents.
In light of the big trip we were taking to CO, it was decided to do secret Santa this year. Nobody knew who had gotten them a gift. It was great because we all had to provide a list of things we would want that were all under a certain dollar amount. It made things really easy.
Opening up all our wonderful gifts.
More to come from our Christmas day and fabulous trip. Stay tuned.

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Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas!

Hope you are all enjoying this day and soaking in the wonder.

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