Wednesday, December 30, 2015

December Shenanigans...

I absolutely love the month of December.  I guess more specifically, I love everything that surrounds Christmas.  This year I told Ken that I wanted to to something Christmasy every day.  We succeeded, even if it was as small as drinking cocoa by the fire or walking to Starbucks for a Christmas latte.

Here is a peek into our December.

We enjoyed a cranberry old fashion courtesy of Southern Living.  They were a little strong for my taste, but Ken really enjoyed them. 

We went to Overland Park Luminary Walk with Brian and Jill.  

Ken and Mike went to Florida for a golf trip.  They had a ton of fun.

We had many of cocktails with wonderful friends!

Kya liked to hang out by the fireplace and keep tabs on the stockings.  You know, just in case Santa arrived early.

Theodore thought it was extra important to hang out underneath the Christmas tree.  I would often find him and Angel both.  I have to say, they like to lay under it but fortunately, they do not mess with it at all.

I spent the first week of December studying like a mad woman while drinking lots of cocoa.  The studying paid off and I earned my 4.0. :)

I had a wonderful evening with some of my favorite ladies from White House Black Market.  These ladies make me laugh so much!  They love to tease me since I am the only blonde.  

Kya and I spent a lot of time by the fire in are jammies.

One of my favorite things to do is load Angel up in the car and take her to look at Christmas lights.  She is one of those odd cats that loves to go bye-bye in the car.  She usually gets so excited that by the end of the night she is sound asleep in my lap!

Jill, Avery, and I had a girls day shopping and dining around the Plaza.  That Avery is a mess, but I sure do love her!  She loves spending time with her fun Aunt Keri, especially when Aunt Keri lets her play in her make-up.

Kya did a little Christmas shopping for her siblings.  She may have even lifted her leg and peed on an aisle inside Petco.  Oops.

We also managed a fun hike since Ken has been off work for Christmas vacation.  

I will admit, I am not looking forward to taking down my Christmas decorations, but alas, the season is winding down.  I can always sneak a Christmas song or two in between now and November and no one has to know!

Monday, December 28, 2015

Arizona Hiking: The White Tank Mountains...

Just before Thanksgiving, Ken and I went on a little vacation to Arizona.  We have had a stressful few months and both needed to get away.  What better thing to do than to escape to sunshine and hiking?

We stayed in Surprise so that we could see a friend of ours.  The White Tank Mountains happen to be right next door, so we set out for a little exploring.

We took off with the intention to do a 7 mile hike on the Mesquite Trail.  Yes, that was our intention, but someone left the map in the car.  That someone might have blonde hair, be 4'10, and answer to the name Keri.  Oops.  Not to worry, we made it out just fine.  No one was hurt and we lived to tell about it.  We had plenty of water and dum dums.

Ready for a full morning of hiking!

We started off our hike in the shade, slowly making our way up hill.  One of my favorite things about hiking in the dessert is getting to see all of the cacti. I love me a good cactus.  Our favorite cactus happens to be the Sonoran cactus, which we saw at every turn on this hike.

I heart cacti

Ken hearts the desert

We made it to a fork in the trail and Ken wanted to go to the right, which meant we got onto a different trail to take us back to the car.  There was some discussion about the map being left in the car, but ultimately, the person that left the map in the car had also memorized the trail distances.  We carried on and I told Ken we would end up hiking 12 miles.  Not exactly the 7 mile hike we had planned on but tomato - tomat-o.  

One thing that we were not counting on was the fact that we would be scaling rocks and taking super huge steps.  The funniest part was when we came across some hikers going the opposite direction and they commented on the lack of assistance that Ken was providing me.  Ken and I both laughed about it and he told the guy that I was fine on my own and only get irritated when he helps.  This is only partly true.  They were some big steps!

Me celebrating that I did not break an ankle or leg coming down the steep stuff.

It was super steep!

My cute hiking partner.  For once his hand is on his hip and he is still smiling.  

Obviously we had to get a picture with our beloved cacti.  No way around that one!

Finally after what seemed like forever scaling boulders, we made it to the flat section and then were soon approaching the car.  After a 12 mile hike, we made our way for burgers and beers.  It was a successful day.

A pair of happy hikers