On Tuesday of Christmas week, my parents came into town and we celebrated with my Grandma by going to her favorite Mexican food restaurant. This picture doesn't even do it justice, but you can kindof tell how ridiculously gawdy their Christmas decorations are. What's funny is that they keep them up all year, so if you ever need to get into the Christmas spirit in August, go to Campo Verde in Arlington.
On Christmas Eve, I had to play for the service at our church, so my parents graciously gave up going to the Christmas Eve service in Abilene that they never miss. It was fun to have everyone together, and I got to play hostess, which I love. One of my favorite moments during the Christmas season is singing "Silent Night" at the candlelight service. Can't beat it.
Christmas day was really relaxing. We held off on opening presents until Brad & Kendall could come over, so we had a late lunch that I REALLY regret not taking pictures of. I think it could've been pictured on Food Network if I do say so myself. Our menu consisted of Rosemary Apricot Glazed Roast Chicken, Asparagus Amandine, Baked Sweet Potatoes, Squash Corn Casserole, Rolls, Fruit Salad, Chocolate Layered Dessert (aka: "Better Than Sex Pie"), and Strawberry Pretzel Salad. SO GOOD!! And, I think it was the first meal that I managed to pull off without any stress or major disasters, so all in all, it was a success. Once Brad & Kendall came over, we did our stockings, which always starts with Jack going absolutely nuts. He has been waiting since November to tear into that stocking, so I'm glad it was worth it.
Brad was sitting by me, unfortunately for him, so I got plenty of pictures of him acting like a dork. Sorry, Brad. If you didn't catch it, those are UT pacifiers he's holding up because my little brother is going to be a DAD in July!
I was so excited for Ryan to open this gift because I knew he would be surprised. It's a panoramic picture of Texas Stadium, which may not mean much to most people, but it means a lot to a die hard Cowboys fan like Ryan. The picture is of Aikman's last game in 2000, and it's out of print now, so I was thrilled to find it. And, it'll be cool to tell our kids that their Dad played football on that field during high school.
After my family left, Ryan and I drove to East Texas to see his family. We had dinner at his grandparents' house on Friday night, hung out with his uncle on Saturday, went to visit his sister's family on Saturday night, then went to Athens to see his other grandmother and aunt on Sunday. WHEW!! It was a whirlwind, but something about East Texas is relaxing, so it didn't seem that busy. Jack LOVES the freedom he gets when we go to the country because he can run forever without a leash. Doesn't he look happy?!?
Here's Ryan with his precious Mama Lee. She is maybe the sweetest person I know. She's about to turn 90 and is recovering from her second broken hip, but she still walks down to the lake with us like a champ.
This is our land on Lake Athens where we dream about the lake house we'll eventually have one day. If I ever need to de-stress, that's the place to do it.
When we got back from East Texas we still hadn't had Christmas with Ryan's parents, so we headed out that way on Monday. Why didn't we take any pictures?!
After all of our traveling, we enjoyed New Year's Eve with some neighborhood friends, and spent New Year's Day taking down Christmas decorations and relaxing. I finished up the holidays with a trip to Abilene...wouldn't be complete without it.
So, I guess it's back to the real world now. I should probably make one of my New Year's Resolutions to be a better blogger, but I'd probably break it by next week!