December 30, 2012

Christmas in Texas 2012


Christmas in Texas 2012
Todd Swank's Diary Entry for December 30, 2012


It was time for a Christmas Road Trip down Interstate 35.  We were headed from Minnesota to Texas, but first we had to pass through Iowa which was the victim of a wicked blizzard just a couple of nights earlier.  It was a mixture of freezing rain and snow which created some very unpleasant driving conditions.


We didn't count how many vehicles we saw in the ditch, but it had to be somewhere near a hundred.  I'm glad we didn't have to drive during this storm because it certainly didn't look like it was a very pleasant experience.


The reason for our trip was to spend Christmas with my family.  We also heard that Santa Claus was down there and we wanted the chance to exchange a few words with him as well.  He's actually a very down to earth kind of guy which I didn't really expect.


Unfortunately my sisters live far away so we don't get to see them as often as we'd like.  But when we get together, we tend to make pretty good use of our time with one another.


This is my sister, Tracy, her husband, Dave, and their daughters, Lauren and Brittany.


This is my sister, Tammy, along with Mallory, Bailey, Lindsey, and her husband, David.


This is us.


And this is Grandma Linda right before her grand-kids dunked her head in the toilet.


Before we left, my sister was bragging to me that the temperature was 71 degrees and the sky was sunny.  When we arrived, Minnesota must have followed us because it dropped down into the twenties and there ended up being a bunch of dang snow on the ground!  So much for our escape from winter!


But we weren't going to let a little snow stop us.  We were going to spend some time outside in the water!!


It may have been 25 degrees outside and maybe 20 degrees warmer in the pool, but that didn't stop Sunny from jumping in about 500 times.  He never gets to see this much water without ice on top of it in Minnesota this time of year.  So he's going to take advantage!


I think Lindsey has only seen snow a handful of times in her life, but she sure seemed to enjoy it.


Uncle Dave didn't like spending time out in the cold.  He preferred staying inside and playing with his pineapple.


Inside or outside, the boys sure enjoy spending time hanging out with their cousins.


This is a photo of the cousins from Christmas 2004 next to a photo from Christmas 2012.  It's amazing to witness just how fast time really does fly.


Bailey introduced us to her new friend Lee.  Or as I like to call them:  BaiLee.


Christmas Lights Up Our Lives!


Bowling Also Lights Up Our Lives!


We sure have a great time when we get together with my family.  I'm not sure if people who stay in the hotel rooms next to us can say the same thing, though.