One of the most fun things about Christmas for me and for Tom is getting to see nephews and nieces open their presents, so you might see a few lot of pictures of that here. I realize most of you won’t care as much about what we did over the holidays, but my sister and brother-in-law were tied to St. Louis for work this Christmas, so I want to share it with her, even if no one else reads this. We love to see our families, and Christmas is our favorite time of year, so we have even more fun seeing everyone then, though it’s a whirlwind marathon of driving all over, parties, dinners, church services, big breakfasts, games, presents, and clean-up. It’s a tough life, folks.
Our schedule this year was like this:
December 23rd: Drive to Conyers, drop off Sam and Liam at their “hotel.” Continue to Covington to the Patton house to hang out and have dinner with everyone (mom, dad, siblings, in-laws, nephew, nieces) except James and Kristen, who were stuck in St. Louis this Christmas (booo, work). Play Apples to Apples with Lisa, Jonathan, Jordan, and Sarah after dinner. Drive to McFarlin house in Rutledge. Hang out till 1AM with Tommy and Patti watching old home videos of Christmas morning. Laugh at 5-year-old Tom. Go to bed.
December 24th: Work out with Tom and Tommy in the morning (doing Kenpo X with your father-in-law is way more fun, try it). Get showered and dressed. Hang out. Dress in nicer clothes. Go to Christmas Eve service at Bethany Pres. in Covington. Drive to Patton house for Christmas Eve dinner with Mom, Dad, Jordan, and Sarah. Take “before” picture of living room. Set out Christmas presents. Take “after” picture of living room. Go back to McFarlin house and hang out with Tommy and Patti till we are all crazy sleepy.
December 25th: Hit the snooze button 3 times, then get up at 7:15AM. Get showered and dressed. Wait with Tom for everyone to be ready to open presents. McFarlins assemble in living room. Ben passes out presents. Everyone opens and is excited about their new prizes. Clean-up wrapping paper. Yummy breakfast. Drive to Patton house. Wait on other siblings to arrive. Call Kristen and wish she and James were there, too. Everyone arrives. Go downstairs. Take about 500 pictures of everyone opening gifts with my big present-my camera (I don’t say this with irritation; I enjoy taking pictures). Be shocked to find I have had presents at McFarlin house and Patton house after receiving camera already. Have tons of fun seeing the kids open presents. Have fun watching everyone else open presents and opening ours. Go upstairs and have another huge, yummy breakfast. Watch nephew/nieces do a scavenger hunt that leads to Tyler finding his last gift-two frogs from mom and dad (he was super cute when he found them-so sweet and excited). Put all gifts from this house in car. Hang out for a while. Hug everyone goodbye. Drive to Tom’s Nana’s house. Eat more food. Play games like Scattergories and Apples to Apples with aunts, uncles, cousins, Tommy, Patti, and Ben and Tom. Have lots of fun. Lose both games. Hang out some more. Tell everyone Merry Christmas and goodnight. Drive back to McFarlin house and hang out with Ben until 1AM, then go to sleep.
December 26th: Pack car. Pick up dogs. Drive home. Unpack car. Need nap.
December 27-30th: Clean up house. Put away decorations. Watch movies. Enjoy Christmas presents. Read some of camera manual. Wish I’d read it before Christmas. Still a lot more to learn. See Davey and Kristen while they are in town. Have Robert Lee over to hang out. Eat lunch with Mom and Jordan. Prepare food for party on the 2nd.
December 31st: Hang out with friends for New Years.
January 1st: Drive back to Rutledge to see Mandy and Jim, Elizabeth and Andrew for Christmas, since they were in Albany on the 25th. Exchange gifts. Eat. Enjoy seeing everyone. Drive back home. (I just have to add that I got the Pioneer Woman cookbook, and it is taking every ounce of will not to make everything in her book and to stick to healthy foods instead.)
January 2nd: Throw going away party for Jennifer and Justin Smith. P.S. I spaz out before every party I throw because of stress. This goes away about 20 minutes into the party. Tom has learned how to keep me sane until then. Poor Tom.
January 3rd: Church, then sleeping until next December.