December 24, 2012
Christmas weekend in Branson with the Family
December 21st – On Friday, I took a half day of vacation today and Mom and I and the kids left for Branson. Ron has to work today and tomorrow, so he’s coming up after that. We are meeting Matt, Mandy, Kadence and Kourtland at the Welk Resort. I’m not sure who’s more excited the kids or me. I really wish Ron was able to go with us early, but work calls! We got to Branson around 6:00ish and the kids were dying to hit the pool. We hadn’t eaten, so we grabbed some pizza really quickly and Matt and I took the four K’s to the Splash-A-Torium. It was a little chilly but we swam and hit the water slide. Kadence and Kourtland took Krennan down the slide while I waited at the bottom for Krennan. He wasn’t sure he liked it at first because he ended up coming down on his back, but after he got the hang of it he had a good time playing with the big kids. His favorite thing to do at the Welk is what I call the water table. It’s a series of tubs and platforms that will hold water or let it run through to the floor. He loves to put something in the top tub and watch it go through the other tubs and fall on the floor. Cracks him up! This time of year though it’s pretty cold because its right by the door that goes in and out. After the kids got tired of the water slide they hit the outside hot tub. They were gone for about 20 minutes or so, then they came back in for a little while where it was warmer than 20 degrees. We stayed until almost closing and then took the long freezing walk back across the parking lot to the hotel. BRRR! Saturday morning we got up and Matt and Mandy introduced us to the Uptown Café. We have passed that place a dozen times and never eaten there. I’m sure it will be a family favorite the next time we go. I was telling Ron about it and he was bummed that he missed it. Their breakfast buffet was awesome and they also do a Dinner Show featuring a George Strait tribute. We would love to see that. Maybe a grown up dinner on the next trip! Then we all headed to the outlet mall. Kaleaha pretty much abandoned us to go with Matt and Mandy and the boys. She loves thinking that she’s a big kid. So Mom and Krennan and I went to a couple of stores and then ended up running into the rest of the crew at the Coach Outlet Store. I’ve got a couple of supposedly real Coach purses, but I hadn’t ever been in the Coach store to buy a real one. Mandy said they were having a big sale and I had gotten a coupon by email for additional percentage off. I looked around and narrowed it down to a couple I liked and then finally settled on one while Mom stood in the super long line for Mandy and me. I ended up getting a silver on silver bag that I LOVE! Can’t wait to change purses and start carrying it! Krennan's reward for being good in a store is a ride... When Matt had originally talked to us about the trip he had mentioned that they were planning on going to Silver Dollar City. I knew that Kaleaha would want to go with them and we were not going to spend the money on tickets when we wouldn’t be able to go again any time soon. I decided that we would plan something for the same day that they were doing SDC so that she would have something to look forward to. I chose the magic show. Kaleaha and Ron and I had seen Kirby Van Burch a few years ago but Krennan had never been. We had tickets for 3:00 on Saturday. Krennan was mesmerized. We all had fun watching the show and the kids ended up with souvenir tigers and landing lights (think Star Wars type swords). Kaleaha named her tiger KieKie and Krennan named his Magic Show. The two new additions had to go everywhere with us for the rest of the day. Krennan even wanted to take Magic Show swimming. Luckily, I was able to persuade him to leave him in the room. We were expecting Ron to come up Saturday night, but he ended up being too tired to drive on those roads. He plans on coming up early on Sunday morning. Sunday morning, Ron got to the resort at about 10 am. Matt and Mandy wanted to go to Fuddruckers. We have passed it many times on our way in and out of Branson, but never stopped to eat. It was awesome! It’s a neat place. We ordered our food and then walked over to the tables where we passed the burger bars. Rows of lettuce, tomatoes, pickles, etc. On the other side was an array of mustard, ketchup, BBQ. Any type of sauce you could imagine. They also had an ice cream and cookie bar. They also had a mini arcade in the back. Our kind of place FOR SURE! I’m glad that Matt and Mandy were there since they introduced us to all these new places to eat! After lunch we headed to the Landing. That’s one of my favorite places to go in Branson. I love the shops and the atmosphere. It’s just a cool place to hang out. We used to eat at Macaroni Grill every time we were at the Landing but when we were there earlier this year they had closed down. Boo! The weather was beautiful and Kaleaha and Krennan had fun making wishes in the fountain. At Bass Pro Shop: At the Fountain: It seems like I'm forever trying to get a decent picture of Ron and me. It's almost impossible to do. I decided that since it was a beautiful day I would try to get one of us by the fountain. We had a couple of photo-jackers that made the process a little bit harder than it should have been. Krennan found an Elf friend and stopped to ask him if he knew our Elves, Kody and Kandie. We tried to get a family pic by the BPS fireplace, but a little bitty someone was not very cooperative. Santa, however, was gracious enough to take a break so that we could have a picture with all of us. After a little more shopping we left the landing and still had some time to kill before going to Dixie Stampede. Since Ron had not gone to the outlet mall with us yesterday he wanted to stop by there quickly before the show started. We stopped inside a couple of stores while Mom waited with the kids in the car then left to head to Dixie Stampede. We met up with Matt and Mandy and the boys and had pictures made and then got seated for the show. Krennan wanted to kill some time taking silly pictures while we were waiting on the show to start. Then when Ron wondered what we were doing, we were able to snap a quick picture. While we’ve been to Dixie Stampede several times before it’s still one of our all time places to go in Branson. It was extra fun to get to go with the whole family. Krennan was fascinated with the horses and the Nativity Show. Kaleaha was just excited to be hanging out with the big kids. After the show we headed back to the resort. Ron finally got to go swimming with the kids. They were ecstatic. I think the water might have been slightly warmer tonight too! I got a FaceBook message from a friend that gave us all our Elf Names. It was fun figuring everyone’s name out. We were cracking up. Monday morning we got up and got all of us dressed (which is a huge accomplishment), got both cars loaded back up and had breakfast at McDonalds. Matt and Mandy had already headed back home. Ron wanted to go back through the outlet mall for a couple of things so Mom followed us over there. Usually I would go with him and let Krennan just run outside but it was 22 degrees. So he and I sat in the car and watched movies. Mom sat with us for a little bit but finally decided to head back home too. She had some last minute shopping to do. Kaleaha had gone with Ron shopping, so after another 45 minutes I finally called to see how much longer they were going to be. They were already headed back to the car. We left “B” town shortly after that headed back for Christmas Eve at home.