Get ready for one VERY VERY long blog of our Christmas trip to Wisconsin.
We flew out on Christmas Eve into crazy storms across the country...so we planned for being stuck in an airport at some point along the way. We smartly packed ALL of Cohen's stuff and all gifts in one carry on bag...but were immediately foiled in our plan upon boarding in Denver. The plane we flew on from Denver to Minneapolis was an older one and some standard carry on items would not fit in the overhead bins so by the time we boarded we had to gate check our bag (more on this later) with one of the VERY unfriendly Delta flight attendants...then we were off to MN.
Where, yes you guessed it our flight to WI was cancelled. Luckily we got in early enough that we were able to get seats on a later flight, but that meant we had 5 hours in the airport. Thankfully the Minneapolis airport is amazing so it wasn't too bad. However, in addition to finding out that our flight was cancelled we also found out that our bag of Cohen's stuff was not gate checked...but instead checked all the way through to Wisconsin (more on this later) so we only had his diaper bag stuff with us, which thankfully I had packed pretty full. We fed Cohen and then it was nap time. but Cohen thought it was play time SOOOO fun...so Sam had to rig his jacket and Cohen's stroller shield over the little bed so Cohen could fall asleep.
We finally arrived in Green Bay...and found this sign amusing...only in Wisconsin will you find the shop option given in the lower right hand column! Alas...the cheese shop was closed so we were unable to purchase any cheese. In fact both shops in the airport and the one restaurant were all closed, leaving us with...
the food court! And we did have to take advantage of the food court because we were at the Green Bay airport for about 3 hours before Sam's dad could get us...the whole time waiting for our luggage WHICH DID NOT MAKE IT WITH US ON OUR PLANE. Including the gate checked suitcase of ALL of Cohen's stuff. Keep in mind this is Christmas Eve, so by the time we go to Appleton to collect Joel from the Appleton airport where he has also spent some quality time in their food court (much like ours) it is about 7pm and nothing is open except Walgreens. So I collect what I can for Cohen, some bibs talking about dad being awesome and such and we head to Hortonville where Sam's folks live...hoping our bags will possibly make it in on the last flight of the night.
No luck on the bags, so the following morning Sam's mom outfits me in some clothes (and she is also a Mary Kay lady so I have some makeup as well), meanwhile Sam finds a stash of old reject clothes of Joel's and dresses himself up. We washed Cohen's outfit and at least I had one extra sleeper in the diaper bag...and it was Christmas. After a LONG process which I won't go into a red Dodge something or another pulls into the icy driveway in Hortonville around noon and delivers our bags!! Yipee!! We gave the guy some cash and beer for his trouble and just sat in awe of our bags which we were pretty confident we would not see for a few more days.
The grown Troge guys
Cohen meeting "Uncle Joel" who sure looks a LOT like daddy!
and also does a GREAT WallE voice!
then it is time for some music (notice Cohen made it into his cute Christmas outfit...Sam did not)
it takes great concentration
time for grandpa's drum
We had a low key Christmas day eating a great meal and hanging out with grandma, grandpa and Joel playing games because the next day was going to be full of visitors... starting with great grandma (who couldn't wait to meet Cohen...and is also one of my most faithful blog readers!)
and Kelly (Sam's cousin) who when she walked in everyone said we wouldn't see Cohen for the rest of the day...they were right...Kelly was SO great with him
Cohen and Colleen, who supplied the entire crew with some amazing chili!
Cohen and Stan and Darby...Cohen and Stan had some great reading time
Cohen and Caleb
and a BIG smile for Josiah who wasn't so sure about holding a baby :)
the Malone crew (Adam, Wendy, Mike)
the Hintz Family (Darby, Stan, Caleb, Josiah)
the Drews crew (Rol, Colleen, Kelly, Matt, Tanya)
snowball fight time...which is all fun and games until Sam tags Ruben AND Joel in the face
so he and Ruben decide it is Lego time instead
hello great grandpa!
Ruben sure loved Cohen and was so sweet with him, he is going to be a great helper when his new little SISTER comes home!
Cohen's first Christmas...our family
fancy walking with daddy
He LOVES walking...we are pretty sure he may skip crawling and go straight to walking!
great grandma was bummed because she was sick so she couldn't hold Cohen
The next morning we had even more snow...they have such a great backyard!
the trees were so pretty
It is hard to see on this picture but there was a bright red cardinal on the bird feeder...which we also believe is a squirrel feeder!
two days after Christmas we celebrated with the family
Jee with his favorite guys
JD with his
Cohen is going to have fun growing up with these cousins!
snow time...take 2
Joel and Ruben take the higher ground and are ready for action
and I must admit at somewhat of an advantage...
against Sam and Jee...who were learning about multiplying...
Jee ready for action
Meahwhile, JD shoveled the entire patio!
how can you say no to this face?!
or this little one!
The Troge and Micheel crew
which by this summer will be one more with the arrival of baby girl Micheel in May
hey may look like he is crawling...but not yet
all of the boys...the girls are a little outnumbered!
we got to meet Adam and Amy's new little one Landon, who is a few weeks younger than Cohen
it was great to hang out and see the kiddos and catch up (and admire the gorgeous house!)
hanging with Grandpa
our little rock star!
Sam and Joel made an amazing French meal for us one night
it was an all day affair...here is the start of the chicken or Coq au Vin from Sam's Mastering the Art of French Cooking cook book
this is the part where the congnac was lit on fire
preparing the mushrooms
the simmering chicken a few hours later
and once it was pulled from the simmer...the purple color from the wine or Vin as some may say
preparing for the fancy meal
the finished chicken...with cookbook in background
the final product...VERY impressive!
Great grandma was feeling better a few days later so she finally got to hold Cohen...Cohen kept staring at great grandpa...so funny!
Getting ready to leave...Cohen has already changed so much from the last time grandma and grandpa saw him! We'll see them again this summer to celebrate their 35th anniversary.
Laurie grew up mainly in Colorado (4th grade on) then started college in Boulder and transferred to New Hampshire. After finishing school I moved to Boston to teach... and that's where I met Sam. Sam grew up just outside of Green Bay Wisconsin and went to college in Colorado. He luckily got his first job in Boston and the rest is history. We got married while in Boston then moved to LA. We are now back in Colorado and loving life! We have been lucky to make great friends along the way and have some amazing experiences!! But the best thing that has happened to us is our little boy, Cohen.