Our Easter celebration started Thursday night with a trip to see the Easter bunny. Our local mall didn't offer a bunny this year, so our only option was to visit the one at Bass Pro. Taylor must have liked those creepy eyes and that mischievous grin, because she happily sat on his lap and flashed a big grin at the camera. Is this seriously the same kid that had a complete meltdown on Santa's lap just 3 months before?!
Friday evening we headed to my parents' house to spend Easter with family and to celebrate my twin nieces' third birthday! I can't believe these sweet little girls are already three years old. It seems like just yesterday my sister was waddling around with them in her belly and now they're as wild and spunky as can be. We love these little ladies oh so very much! Happy Birthday, Riley & Reagan!
We split the day eating birthday cake and hunting Easter eggs. The kids had a great time enjoying the fresh air and running wild all over the yard. We took wagon rides, rode bicycles, and even played a little baseball. Although Taylor is the baby, she's quick to prove that she can keep up with the big kids. The sweetest sight of the day had to be the three little ones riding around in the wagon, carrying on their own little conversations and laughing just because. They really are the best of friends, and I can't wait to continue to watch them as they grow up together.
The next morning, Taylor opened her basket from the Easter bunny (which I totally failed at taking pictures of) and then we put on our Sunday best and headed to church to celebrate the true meaning of the holiday. For those that don't know, I grew up attending the same Baptist church nearly every Sunday until I moved away to college. That church and its members are a huge part of who I am and will always hold a special place in my heart. I love that our family continues to be welcomed with open arms every time we attend. The warmth and love we receive coupled with the sight of my daughter sitting in the very pews that I sat in as a child makes my heart overflow with happiness. Moments like that are what life is all about.
After the service, we continued our tradition of taking family photos on the church lawn. As you can see, Taylor was so excited to see her cousins (and finally be able to run wild after sitting for so long) that she was down right giddy with excitement. As soon as we would turn our backs, she was sprinting toward the road. This girl loves to be outside and loves to explore! And who can blame her? It was absolutely beautiful outside, she was surrounded by her cousins, and she knew that nap time was quickly approaching.
After lunch and too much candy, the tot finally went down for a nap. Shortly after she fell asleep, we received some unfortunate news that my great aunt had passed away. She had been battling Alzheimer's for some time, the same disease that took my grandpa, her brother, entirely too soon. Our happy weekend quickly became bittersweet with that one phone call. She is now with her brother in heaven and I think that's something we can all rejoice about. We love you, Aunt Wanda. May you rest in peace.