Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Christmas 2011: Five Days of Traveling (And Fun)

We survived! It was a pretty crazy holiday season, but it was wonderful. We got to see so many people we love, give gifts and receive quite a few awesome ones. I have a stack of new books to read AND a Kindle AND a sewing machine, so I think I'm set for hobbies for the next six months. You may remember, last year's Christmas was a little crazy, but this year more than made up for its chaos.

We kicked off the holidays with Ludi-Christmas (more on that later), our traditional holiday gathering with my hometown friends. Over the years, we've perfected the Melrose Place pose. Just pop us on a DVD cover and you've got the next CW sensation.

On Christmas Eve, we visited with my mom's family and I got to spend some quality time with my nephew Spencer. It won't be long before he won't be letting us hold him like that!

My mom and I started a project that will take years — sorting through her hope chest, which is FULL to the brim with every project, drawing, written piece or newspaper clipping that concerned me. We found so many treasures, including my kindergarten drawings of ballerinas (above).

This is the chest...we only skimmed the surface.

We had great fun opening presents, posing for pictures with the "Santa on a Stick" I put in Sean's stocking (that's my cute stepsister)...

And wearing fake mustaches while we played White Elephant.

On Christmas Day, we opened gifts with my dad's family, visited my grandma and then drove up to Silver Spring, Maryland, where we surprised his extended family just as they sat down to dinner! It was great fun...very rare that you get to surprise people anymore like that! We came home to open presents, which meant Monday was a very lazy day for us.

We hung out with Maeve and watched "Amelie" on TV, then had a big spaghetti dinner with Sean's extended family, including his cousin Emily and her Dutch boyfriend and his brother. We finished the night with a trip to see "Mission Impossible."

Our last little visit was for lunch on Tuesday with my dear friends Mark and Charlie, visiting from California. You know me, you'll hear more about the food later.

It was a wonderful Christmas, one of the best in recent memory. I only wish break was longer!

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