We were able to go to my parents' house for two weeks in Iowa. I'm so thankful we were able to go! We had hoped to go in the Summer but it just never worked out, especially since we went to North Dakota for my Grandma's funeral in July.
Before we left I looked up the 10-day forecast to see if we should take our snow stuff or not and only one day had a "slight chance" of flurries, so we decided not to take it all. Well that was a big mistake! We got there on a Saturday and that Wednesday we were hit with a blizzard and my parents ended up getting several inches of snow. Not only that, the temperature never got above freezing the whole time we were there and it snowed two more times.
But thankfully my parents still had some snow things left over from when we were kids and since it was so cold, the kids didn't want to stay out too long anyway. Caleb went out the first day and pushed them on their sleds, and I went out the next day. We had a blast sledding, throwing snowballs, and we played snow tackle. We were exhausted by the time we went inside, though. And very grateful for the fireplace!
We weren't able to go to the zoo with my sister and her boys, but my mom did take the kids to the IMAX theater twice, and they went to the new aquarium, the jungle, desert, and the new pavilion. She has a lot of pictures of this, I just haven't gotten any copies yet! (hint, hint)
Other highlights of our trip were spending a day at my sister's house, seeing my younger brother and sister, surprising the kids with gifts on Christmas morning that they were NOT expecting, getting my hair trimmed and colored, and spending time with my parents. We had a good visit and I'm very thankful we were able to go! But it would be nice to go again this year.