Monday, February 8, 2010

Christmas VaCaTiOn

Catching up on CHRISTMAS 2009

Gunner had a fun preschool party, complete with a visit from Santa! Gunner loves Mrs. Bodine, and has some great friends in his preschool... including 6 other kids from church. At each party they get a new holiday bean-bag to take home, and they do the "bean-bag boogie". Cooper was already on Christmas break, and got to join the party too.

Cooper did great in his Kindergarten Holiday Program. It was perfect. The 4 classes wore their jammies and sang 6 songs. Cooper is a great little performer. The best part was he went straight from basketball, so he had his bball shoes on with his jammies. :)

We all had fun getting in to the holiday spirit. The boys loved doing their Lego advent calendar, that we got from the Sinemas along with an amazing Christmas quilt. From Dusty, Angie & Gage, we got to get a surprise out of the "12-days of Christmas" pocket each day. The boys LOVED them, and I loved that most of them were activities to keep them busy for a minute! I also pre-wrapped some books for each day of December, so we got to open and read a new book each day. We sang a Christmas song, and read a scripture each night in December. For our neighbors, we made gingersnaps, caramels, and sugar cookies. You can tell how eager Beckett was to get in to the cookie dough balls! Mr. Intuitive used the dishwasher as a step. He also stole the sprinkles and took them in the living room.

Santa was very nice to the boys this year, and they worked hard to earn a good Christmas (at least the few days prior!). :) They each got just what they wanted. Cooper got Heelys and a Darda racetrack. Gunner got a scooter, tech deck ramp and a skateboard carrying case. Beckett loved his little indoor basketball hoop.

Christmas morning was magical, except that Dad had to WORK! Technically, it was Christmas Eve, but we celebrated a day early so we could catch a flight on Christmas Day to visit family. Because he was taking the next few weeks off, he had to work a half-day Christmas Eve. We ended up opening all the non-Santa presents on our Christmas Eve. We also had a ham dinner and yummy orange rolls. And, then the next morning, we got to get up early and see what Santa brought before he left. We also gave them temple blocks for their rooms, and had an extra temple block... we had them guess who it was for, and ended up telling them it was for the baby in mom's tummy! They were so excited. Cooper shouted "please be a girl, please be a girl!" It was so cute. Here are the boys with their loot from Mom and Dad and each other.

Beckett's favorite part of Christmas was all the CANDY and chocolate!

So, we left to the airport hotel on Christmas Eve (our Christmas Day) to stay the night, since our flight was scheduled to leave at 6:30 am the next morning. About the time we left, a huge ice/snow storm started! It took us 3 hours (instead of 1:15) to get to the airport! Then all the restaurants were closed for Christmas Eve, but we finally found a Wendy's drive-through open after about an hour driving around. Even our antenna had about an inch of ice on it! We woke up at 4am the next morning, and found out our 5am shuttle driver got stuck on his way in to work. So, the hotel, LUCKILY, got us one of 2 SUV cabs that were running. The crazy taxi driver plowed his way through the snow drifts to get us to the airport. He was psycho... passing people on the right, etc. There were cars off the road everywhere. But, we made it! Most airlines cancelled flights that morning, but ours was "on-time". We boarded and were ready to leave (a little late), and they informed us the snowplow was stuck on the runway. After 2 hours waiting on the plane, we finally took off. BUT, we missed our connection in Denver, and instead of flying out at 10am, we were on a plane at 9PM! I was SO DONE after 2 hours in the customer service line. Luckily, our friends, the Bentleys, came and got us at the airport, and we were able to spend some time at their house (hopefully not crashing their Christmas!). The kids had a blast, and loved getting to see their friends! We made it on our flight, and to Spokane just after midnight.... after 23 hours travel time! We were tired, I was sick (puked in the airport as soon as we landed), but we were so grateful to make it safely - all things considered! What a way to spend Christmas Day!

The next morning, we took off to Hope, ID for the Gatten Family Reunion! All NINE of us Gatten kids, and our families, were able to make it! Spike was fresh off his mission. We had 4 condos at Pend Orielle Shores Resort. It is right on the lake. We had SO MUCH FUN! Swimming, racquetball, wally ball, running, aerobics, cards, movies, sledding, skiing, basketball, ping-pong, EATING, visiting, duck hunting, crafting, and so much more! It was so fun. We were roommates with my sister Mikin's family, the Mortons. They have kids the same ages as ours, and it was so fun!

Here we are skiing at Schweitzer Mountain. I took Cooper and Gunner. Thanks to help from Uncle Dusty, Gunner had a blast once he finally got his skis on! Cooper had only been once before, and caught back on quick too! Gunner skied most of the day until he fell asleep at about 3pm. His last time down the hill, he didn't fall down once! Cooper didn't quit until they kicked them off the run when it was closing... he kept wanting to go "one more time". He was skiing through the trees, and going over jumps, and riding the chairlift with his cousin, Noah (they are at the top pole on the chairlift in this picture). I can't believe how awesome my 6-year-old is, and so independent! Neither of them complained about being cold, and it was just so fun! I can't wait to move by the mountains and have some ski buddies!
Gunner, Cooper, River, Wyatt

Pictured by row below:
Mom, Gunner, Cooper & Gunner, Uncle Spike, Wyatt, Uncle AJ, Uncle Tim
Hayliann, Uncle Tom, River, Wyatt, Uncle Tyler, Cooper & Noah getting off the chairlift
Alyssa & Sophia on chairlift, Sophia, Noah & Aunt Mikin
Sally, Gunner asleep in lodge, Ella

Gunner celebrated his 4th birthday on December 29th. After dinner that night, we had a "Rock 'n Roll Party". We divided into "bands" and came up with lip-syncs to some of Gunner's favorite songs. The blue frosting made perfect lipstick for the girls! Everyone REALLY got into it! It was tons of fun, and Andrew's band, "Beef Stew" won the competition singing "I'm Just a Kid". Gunner actually got sick on his birthday, and went in and out of wanting to participate, but he was the reason to celebrate, and everyone had fun!
Love in the middle of the above picture, Cooper is holding baby Gage (Dusty & Angie's baby). He was so cute and cuddly, and we loved meeting/spending more time with him!

A few miles up the road is the Elementary School, which had a perfect hill for SLEDDING! Papa had brought sleds, and bought everyone a new snow-ball maker (Andrew is demonstrating below)! The snow was perfect for forming the perfect snowballs, and after sledding we had a fun snow-fight. Papa didn't use the snowball makers though, he used a shovel!

Across the top all the kids who sledded:
Beckett, Gunner, Ella, Emma, Mylee, Cooper, Sophia, Ryder, Wyatt, Noah, River, Kiah, Alyssa
I love the picture in the middle above of Gunner, Ella and Sally. These three are all within a few weeks old of each other. They have a lot of fun together, and are so excited to go to preschool together next year!

We had a lot of fun crafting! We made hair bows, flowers, jewelry, etc. Papa even gets involved helping the boys make zipper-pulls and necklaces made out of all sorts of cool stuff... like bear claws, turkey talons, antlers, etc.
Another highlight of the reunion was our NEW YEARS PARTY! Brynne was our party planner, and we did a Gatten Olympics. We divided into 4 countries. We had to "act" like we were from that country the whole night while we participated in different team and individual games. We also each come up with "cheers" for our countries. During a break, Andrew busted out some Snoop Dogg for everyone too. Andrew was the best for the boys at limbo... who new he had this hidden talent?! Cooper was the kid from his team for the "Poofy Puff" contest (fitting as many marshmallows in your mouth as possible). Uncle Brett won. Cooper ran to the bathroom to spit out after 8, and I said, "Are you ok?" He said, "Ya, but I lost." I, of course, told him it was fine, but think it's so cute how competitive he is, and how he felt like he let his team down. :) Cooper was so fun at the party and got to stay up until midnight. The little ones were asleep in the condos. Then, to end the night, the POLAR BEAR PLUNGE! Yes, many of my crazy siblings/nieces/nephews jumped in the freezing cold lake off the snowy dock! Uncle Brett even stayed in for about 5 minutes! And then, made snow angels with his daughter, Nikell!
Above/bottom left - The Polar Bear Plunge Participants:
Uncle Tom, Uncle Brett, Uncle AJ, Uncle Dusty
Nikell, Hayliann, Mylee, Uncle Jon, Uncle Tim, Aunt Brynne
Sophia, Wyatt

After the reunion, we spent the next week of our vacation in Spokane, WA at Andrew's parent's house. His sister, Artie's, family, the Waites, live close too, and we saw them everyday too! After a busy week at the reunion, it was fun to relax a little. Barbara is such a good cook, and we had a turkey dinner, prime rib, apple pie, chocolate cake, and lots of other yummy food! Cooper loved lighting fires in the stove. We also got to spend a day at the children's museum downtown with Grandma and Aunt Artie. We saw Alvin & the Chipmunks Squekuel, ate lunch and played at the mall, created things with Grandpa in the garage, listened to Tanner play his guitar, played cards with Erynn, and just had fun. Andrew and I also got to go on lots of dates thanks to their willingness to babysit!

Gunner got to celebrate his birthday again with the other side of the family at Chuck E. Cheese!

The boys: Gunner, Tyler, Beckett, Tate, Cooper

Overall, we had a great Christmas Vacation! It's hard to believe that we'll live close to all these families next Christmas!


The Obstinant Family said...

Awesome Pictures! I'm glad you guys had a good time. The place you went skiing is beautiful!

Jason and Amy Smith said...

The Gatten fam knows how to PARTY! Glad you were able to make it home, and that you get to be home for good shortly! Hope all is well with your fam... I'm so excited to find out what you are having!!!!! :) Love ya.

The Crandizzles said...

What's with babies and dishwashers? Reese and Ryder (Stacy's son) are the same way! Looks like a fun and eventful Christmas vacation! It's funny because I don't think we've ever actually met, but I feel like I know you because of blogs and facebook. Gotta love the internet connections!

Lowd and Proud said...

I am exhausted after reading your post! You sure know how to have fun!! I can't wait 'til you move home and then I can see you more often (I guess when I come to visit!) I hope your pregnancy continues to go well. I'm praying for a baby girl. :)

KB said...

What a great way to spend the holidays. . .well after you survived your travels of course. I love the pictures skiing -- how beautiful! I can't believe how the boys are growing up -- especially Beckett! He's not a baby anymore. Glad to see your catching up on your blog -- I've missed the updates. XOXO

Dusty , Angie, & Gage said...

Love this post and all the pictures!! Hope you're feeling was great to see you. Can't wait to hear what you're having!!!! Loves!

Aly G said...

Looks like you have been having sooo much fun! Love your hair really dark! You are lookin good!:)

Tracey said...

Wow, looks like a blast!!! Thanks for the great catch up. I hope you're starting to feel a bit better and that the pregnancy continues to go well. My heart was aching as I read through your experience, it sounds so hard and trying. I admire your strength and courage as you make such a tremendous sacrifice in order to bring another choice spirit to this earth. Your children are so blessed to be a part of such a loving family.

Anonymous said...

Greetings! Very useful advice in this particular post!
It's the little changes that produce the greatest changes. Thanks for sharing!

My web site :: vertical jump workouts

Anonymous said...

This design is steller! You definitely know how to keep
a reader entertained. Between your wit and your videos, I was almost moved
to start my own blog (well, almost...HaHa!) Excellent job.
I really enjoyed what you had to say, and more than that, how
you presented it. Too cool!

my blog ::

Anonymous said...

Paragraph writing is also a excitement, if you know afterward you can write if not
it is complicated to write.

Here is my blog: college online education

Anonymous said...

Pretty section of content. I just stumbled upon your site and
in accession capital to assert that I acquire actually enjoyed account your blog posts.
Any way I will be subscribing to your feeds and even I achievement you access consistently quickly.

Also visit my web page: exercises for Vertical leap

Anonymous said...

Thank you for another informative blog. Where else
may just I am getting that kind of info written in such a perfect approach?
I've a challenge that I am simply now running on, and I've been at the
look out for such info.

Here is my web page: jump high to dunk

Anonymous said...

At this time I am going away to do my breakfast, when having my breakfast coming again to read
other news.

My webpage ... exercises for vertical jump

Anonymous said...

I really like your blog.. very nice colors & theme.
Did you make this website yourself or did you hire someone to do it for you?
Plz answer back as I'm looking to construct my own blog and would like to find out where u got this from. appreciate it

Also visit my weblog :: exercises to jump higher

Anonymous said...

Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you writing this post and also the
rest of the website is really good.

my web blog - cd players

Anonymous said...

Hey there! Do you know if they make any plugins to help with SEO?
I'm trying to get my blog to rank for some targeted keywords but I'm not seeing very good success.

If you know of any please share. Thanks!

Here is my homepage workouts to improve vertical leap

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing your thoughts on parkland health plus.

My homepage ... workouts to increase vertical

Anonymous said...

Thanks for ones marvelous posting! I definitely enjoyed reading it, you are a great
author.I will make certain to bookmark your blog and will
eventually come back in the future. I want to encourage you continue your great work, have
a nice day!

Here is my web-site :: vertical jump workouts

Anonymous said...

Hey very interesting blog!

Here is my web site exercises to improve vertical

Anonymous said...

Wow, wonderful weblog structure! How long have you been
blogging for? you made running a blog look easy. The total glance of your website
is excellent, as well as the content!

Also visit my page - Miamorebg.Com

Anonymous said...

This post is priceless. Where can I find out more?

Also visit my blog; workouts to increase vertical

Anonymous said...

You can certainly see your skills in the work you write.
The arena hopes for more passionate writers such as you who
aren't afraid to say how they believe. At all times go after your heart.

Also visit my blog post;

Anonymous said...

Excellent site you have got here.. It's difficult to find quality writing like yours nowadays. I honestly appreciate individuals like you! Take care!!

Here is my page ...

Anonymous said...

Pretty! This was an incredibly wonderful article. Thank you for
supplying these details.

my homepage - workouts to improve vertical jump

Anonymous said...

Hello there! I just want to give you a big thumbs up for
the great info you have right here on this post.
I will be coming back to your website for more soon.

Also visit my web blog; Exercises for Vertical Jump

Anonymous said...

Usually I do not learn article on blogs, however I would like to say that this write-up very pressured me to take a look at and do so!
Your writing taste has been surprised me. Thanks, quite nice

My weblog ... leg exercises no equipment

Anonymous said...

It's really a great and useful piece of info. I'm happy
that you shared this useful information with us. Please stay us up to date like this.
Thanks for sharing.

Feel free to visit my blog ... exercises for vertical

Anonymous said...

Thanks for any other wonderful article. The place else could anyone get that
kind of info in such a perfect approach of writing? I have a presentation next week, and I am on the search for such information.

Here is my web site - vertical jump workouts

Anonymous said...

Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up and let you know a few of the pictures aren't loading properly. I'm not sure why
but I think its a linking issue. I've tried it in two different browsers and both show the same outcome.

Also visit my website workouts for vertical

Anonymous said...

Great goods from you, man. I've take into account your stuff prior to and you're just too excellent.
I actually like what you have got right here, certainly like
what you are stating and the best way wherein you are saying it.

You make it entertaining and you continue to
take care of to keep it wise. I cant wait to read far
more from you. That is actually a tremendous site.

my web site - exercises to increase vertical jump

Anonymous said...

Everyone loves it when individuals come together and share ideas.
Great website, continue the good work!

Also visit my webpage: exercises for vertical jump

Anonymous said...

Every weekend i used to pay a visit this site, because i want enjoyment, as this this site conations truly nice funny material

Also visit my web site

Anonymous said...

There's certainly a great deal to find out about this subject. I like all the points you made.

Feel free to visit my web-site

Anonymous said...

As the admin of this web site is working, no question very shortly it will
be renowned, due to its quality contents.

my web-site; exercises to increase vertical

Anonymous said...

Ηello would you mind stating whiсh blοg platfoгm you're using? I'm lοoκing to ѕtart
mу own blog in the near futurе but I'm having a hard time deciding between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal. The reason I ask is because your layout seems different then most blogs and I'm lοoκing for something
unique. Ρ.S Sorгy for gеtting
off-topіс but I had to аsk!

Loοk at my wеb blog: diamondlinks review

Anonymous said...

It's difficult to find well-informed people about this topic, however, you seem like you know what you're talking about!

Feel free to surf to my blog: workouts for vertical jump

Anonymous said...

Woah! I'm really digging the template/theme of this blog. It's simple,
yet effective. A lot of times it's very difficult to get that "perfect balance" between superb usability and appearance. I must say you've done a very good job with this.
In addition, the blog loads extremely quick for me on Safari.

Excellent Blog!

My site :: workouts for vertical jump