Thanksgiving in Ohio

For the first time in several years, we took a family trip to Ohio to spend Thanksgiving with Curtis’s family… his mom and sister and her family. It was the best visit we’ve ever had! We flew in on Monday and came home on Friday of Thanksgiving week. Anna was super nervous about flying on an airplane (she’d been on one when she was a preschooler but didn’t remember) and Dominic had been on one in September for his trip to Harry Potter World with Jenny so he was just plain excited. We had enough airline miles for the kids, but we had to buy tickets for myself and Curtis… totally worth not having four days in the car with the kids! Dominic wanted to sit with Anna all the way to Ohio (aww) and they both did great. Anna cried a little at takeoff but overall really enjoyed the flights. You know how she become singularly obsessed with things? Now it’s airplanes. Once we got to Ohio, she started looking up airplane videos on YouTube and downloaded several flight simulator games. The return trip was even better and she thoroughly enjoyed the whole experience… and her obsession with planes has really taken off! (Snort… taken off… see what I did there?)

Young’s Jersey Dairy

Tuesday for lunch we went to Young’s Jersey Dairy. We ate first, then went and toured the dairy. The kids had fun playing on the farm equipment and petting the baby animals in the barn. Then we went back inside for the best ice cream ever. In attendance were myself, Curtis, Judy, Anna, Dominic, Myles, and Lexi. (More photos of each day will be posted on my personal Facebook page!)

New Braunfels family photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/7.1 | 1/200 | ISO 50

Besties Since High School

Curtis and Tony have been best friends since high school so it was imperative that we visit with Tony while we were in Dayton. Since we were staying with Shelley, Tony and his significant other, Heather (and her son, Ian) came over to Shelley’s to hang out. Shelley prepared a bunch of appetizers and we sat around and talked and laughed for a couple of hours Wednesday evening. Tony’s face is cracking me up here… this is so Tony! Anna totally fell in love with him and when he left later, he gave her a big hug with a peck on the cheek… Anna would not let go. It was so cute. She asked, “Would you marry me, Tony?”

New Braunfels family photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2.5 | 1/200 | ISO 2500

The Thanksgiving Table

Shelley ended up hosting 17 people at her home for Thanksgiving… and hosted us staying there! She didn’t even seemed fazed by that at all. I would’ve been a stressed out mess. Her Thanksgiving table was beautiful. She was so prepared that the morning was actually fairly relaxed. The extended relatives all brought food as well, and Judy and Laura did a lot of cooking too. I got to meet John’s parents and see Myles’s grandparents too as well as meeting some long time family friends.

New Braunfels family photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2.5 | 1/200 | ISO 2500


Now that the kids are older, traveling is a lot easier. Anna was a little homesick the first two nights but by Thanksgiving, she was happy and engaged with the family. I had her sit next to me during the big Thanksgiving meal and she did great. Shelley’s wall plaque states:

Bless the food before us, the family beside us, and the love between us. Amen.

Isn’t this a beautiful space? She’s the kind of person that always has an open door and can feed her family plus anyone that happens to drop in. We’ve never felt more at home than we did this time. This year I am thankful for our family, our health, our abundance, and for being so in love with my husband.

New Braunfels family photographer

Nikon D750 | 20mm | f/2.2 | 1/200 | ISO 400

Judy and Her Kids

I took my portrait lens to get some photos of my mother-in-law, Judy. She is going through a major transition, selling her little house in Fairborn and moving just a few blocks away from Shelley. When Judy visited in August, I don’t think I took any photos of her with the kids, so I wanted to remedy that. I got a cute series of her with Shelley and Curtis (did you know everyone up there calls him Jeff?), and I’ll post all of them on Facebook… but this was my favorite smiling shot. Shelley has lost 75 pounds over the last year and a half by doing the Paleo diet. She looks great!

New Braunfels family portrait photographer

Nikon D750 | 85mm | f/7.1 | 1/200 | ISO 2500

Judy and the Thompson Grandkids

Judy with Anna and Dominic. Dominic is almost as tall as his grandmother! Probably by the next time we see her, he will be taller. It’s crazy how fast the kids grow up.

New Braunfels family portrait photographer

Nikon D750 | 85mm | f/7.1 | 1/200 | ISO 1600

Judy and her Legacy

Missing Jenny and Christopher (who is serving in the Navy at the moment), here is Judy with all of her grandchildren… Myles, Anna, Laura, Dominic, and Lexi. My heart is full.

New Braunfels family portrait photographer

Nikon D750 | 85mm | f/7.1 | 1/200 | ISO 1600

Laura and Nick

Laura is away at college now and came home for Thanksgiving. Her boyfriend, Nick, joined the family for Thanksgiving dinner. He is a very nice guy and Laura reminds me of Jenny… capable, smart, kind, and open-hearted with a killer smile.

New Braunfels family portrait photographer

Nikon D750 | 85mm | f/4 | 1/320 | ISO 1000

I really hope the Chelman/Thompson/Gotcher clan can come for a visit to Texas next summer. The kids would have fun playing in the pool, floating the river, and going to Schlitterbahn. We had an awesome visit and we can’t wait to go back and see Judy settled in her new house, just walking distance from Shelley’s. We love all of you! Thanks for looking!



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