Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Family Vacation a la Vail

We just returned from a wild week in Colorado with the Higginbothams, Hoopes & Morleys! We all stayed at a beautiful resort outside of Vail. It was gorgeous and the weather was perfect.


This was the happiest Tess was in bed the whole trip!

We packed a lot into a few days: a family photo shoot (we'll see how those turn out); lots of swimming; morning walks along the Eagle river; massages at the spa; a lift ride to the top of the ski slopes; a whole lot of good food; and two family parties!

Girls' Spa Day.
I have post-massage hair. But don't I look RELAXED?!

Tess had the best time! She was thrilled to have so many fun people around! She spent lots of time playing with her cousins: Kate, Truman, Jake, Brooke & Andrew. They were so good to her--they were patient and tried to include her in their activities even though she is little.

Brooke "trying to make Tess laugh."

It's impossible to get a picture of them all being still!

Kate, in particular, looked out for Tess and made sure she was having a good time. Tess and Brookie had fun together, too. When it was time for us to leave, Brooke said, "I don't want Tess to go. I love her, and she will miss me and she will cry."

Brookie drew a portrait of herself with Tess.
As she explained, "I have straight hair and
Tess has curly hair in the back."

Tess & her cousin Kate.

Happy 40th, Keith & Wendy!

This family trip coincided with Keith & Wendy's 40th Wedding Anniversary, so we had an extra excuse to celebrate. One evening, we had a pizza party in our room and we all watched a slideshow tribute that Ry & I put together for their anniversary.

This slideshow was a labor of love, let me tell you. First, I had to get digital copies from their old photo albums. Pulling off the picture heist was not an easy feat. The week before our trip, Tess & I went to Vienna, under the guise that we needed to get Tess new shoes (well, we did). My plan was to get there in time for Tess' nap, put her down & tell Wendy I needed a nap too. Then I was going to swipe the picture albums and take pictures with my camera while I "napped" in Laura's room. The best laid plans...

So, Wendy was in her room, I put Tess down & sent Keith out to the garage for something. Then I RAN into the den, swiped a big stack of photo albums and RAN upstairs into Laura's room, while PRAYING Wendy wouldn't come out. I stashed them under the bed and ran to grab my camera. But of course, Tess wouldn't sleep. She screamed and screamed and screamed.

I finally gave up, got Tess up and we decided to go shopping. I took Tess down to Keith in the family room, Wendy went into her room to get ready, and I RAN upstairs to snatch the photo albums from under the bed. I hurriedly rushed the big stack down the stairs, PRAYING Wendy wouldn't come out of her room. I yelled to Keith that I need to get something in the car and slipped out the front door. I was sure Keith could see that for some reason I'm carrying a big stack of red books, but he didn't ask questions. I ran them out to the car and tried my best to cover them up.

I was petrified the rest of the week that I was going to get a frantic call from Wendy demanding to know what I'd done with her photo albums. But amazingly, they didn't notice the albums were gone.

Everything went smoothly until I tried to burn the finished slideshow to DVD the night before we flew out. The program crashed, and the file was corrupted. AARGGHH! We took the computer with us and managed to recreate the slideshow. It turned out really cute and it was a great tribute to all of the years Keith & Wendy have spent together.

We had a second party at Marc & Ann's room with yummy barbecue and a family program.
"Programs" are something of a Higginbotham tradition, and each of the kids put on a performance for us. I encouraged Tess to perform "The Itsy-Bitsy Spider," which resulted in her attempting to rip my shirt off in an effort to escape the limelight. The other performances went over better.

We had a lot of fun and only a little sleep. As it turns out, Tess has taken a firm stand against all playpens and cribs other than her own. We stayed the first night with the Hoopes and Tess was livid when we tried to put her down for the night. She cried hysterically and we got her up several times, only to cry harder each time we put her down again. Nana finally took sympathy on Tess and went in to rescue her, and Tess showed her thanks by vomiting all over her. Poor Nana. It's not really a family vacation until someone throws up on grandma.

The rest of the trip was a battle for sleep. Tess would only fall asleep late at night, once she was positively exhausted. She'd fall asleep if we let her sleep in our bed, with a bottle, and if we stayed with her until she conked out. Naps were out of the question, so if she ever fell asleep in the car, I'd just keep driving until she woke up.

Despite the lack of sleep, Tess stayed in relatively good spirits during the trip. I think she was afraid she'd miss out on something if she slept too long. Our hotel looked out onto the Eagle River, and Tess had a wonderful time throwing rocks and dipping her toes in the water. She could have spent hours sitting on that rock!

And some more documentation of our fun:

Whew! I think we need a vacation to recover from that wild time! Thanks, Keith & Wendy, for the great family get-together! We had a blast!


Ryan said...

What a beautiful place, and beautiful family. Life just doesn't get much better! Tess's curls are so cute! Miriam, you are looking so FINE! You are too, Ryan! Love, Dipsy

Laura said...

What a fun vaca!! Can you please past this entire post to my blog :) You forgot to write about our trip to the sauna. 10 cups of water on the rocks and we are out of there!!!

Maureen said...

You got some really beautiful pictures. My favorite is Tess with her cousin, snuggling in bed with a flashlight.

The bed looks heavenly, I'm surprised she wouldn't sleep in it!

Good job completing the slide show... who knew you were so devious and sneaky?

Ann said...

I didn't know Tess threw up on Nana! That is funny! Let the vacation begin! Do you have more video of Jake singing? I know it was short but it was so dang cute!

Ryan and Miriam said...

Yep, and Tess gave a repeat vomiting performance when she came home too. She cried so hard because she didn't want to sleep in her crib alone. She just gets herself too worked up, and out it comes.

That's all the video I have. I wasn't quick enough to catch the beginning of Jake's song. Sorry!

Laura said...

Love the new blog layout!