L.A. Kato

A Southwest Thanksgiving

Posted in Holidays, Travel by Katie on November 29, 2015


We just wrapped up our Thanksgiving trip to Arizona and I have no complaints about that visit.  Mad shout out to my in-laws (who reside in Scottsdale) for being great hosts and even better babysitters!  We stayed Sunday-Friday and Brent and I got some great date nights under our belt, including dinner at a nearby distillery, our favorite local Italian place (byob!) and Mockingjay part 2.  Man, that movie was bleak, but we were prepared.  And also watched at a theater with cocktails.

In the morning the girls would "feed the birds"

In the morning the girls would “feed the birds”

Cici finally got to relax

Cici finally got to relax

We killed time with evening walks

We killed time with evening walks

One of the evenings there we went to the nearby Fairmont Scottsdale Princess for their “Christmas at the Princess” event.  There were a bunch of activities for the kids, like a carousel, Santa visits, hot cocoa and train rides.  Lexi has been begging to ice skate so the “desert ice” rink they had set up was the perfect opportunity.  She had a few spills but I was so proud of how quickly she bounced back up and how she insisted on attempting to skate on her own.  We might even try it again!






Cici of course loved the merry-go-round and the train, which took us through a great holiday light set up.  Unsurprisingly she wanted nothing to do with Santa.






On Tuesday Brent and his dad took the girls to the nearby kid’s museum, while Brent’s mom and I had lunch with his cousin in Scottsdale.  On Wednesday we went to the train park where the girls got to ride another train and another carousel.  I feel like there is a theme here somewhere?




On Thanksgiving we hit up another park, and before dinner Brent and I took the girls to a nearby lookout spot for pictures.  We usually do a mini photo session with a professional photographer at the end of the year but those prices keep climbing ($200+ for 30 minutes) and you know I love to think I can save some cash money via DIY.  So we went into the desert armed with a tripod, camera and remote and attempted to make some magic happen.

setting up the shot

setting up the shot

The major challenge, of course, was getting both girls to smile at the camera at the same time while Brent and I were also in the shot.  I anticipated this, and it was just as impossible to execute as expected.



It was also hard to get a pic of the two of them alone, as Lexi loves to cuddle Cici and Cici loves to scream “don’t touch me!”



At the end of the “shoot,” Brent and I put the girls in the car and set up the tripod five feet away to get a few pictures of the two of us.  After wrangling the girls, it felt incredibly easy to get one clear, useable shot of the two of us, and we were back in the car a couple minutes later.  Gotta admit though, it felt good to save all that money, and I was able to piece together a holiday card with the results (no, these were not the “Best Shots”…surprisingly.)

He's a good sport

He’s a good sport

When we got back to the house we sat down to dinner with Brent’s parents, his uncle, cousin, and his uncle’s aunt.  The food was delish, the wine was even better, and the Bears win was the icing on the cake.  A solid Thanksgiving showing!


The next morning it was back to California where we’ve been treated to Lexi asking us nonstop to set up the tree.  Here comes Christmas!



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