We are truly blessed to live so close to so much family (sorry Gansta Barbie, you made me appreciate it even more). The holidays are an automatic family event. Even though I have a small part of me that wants to start our own little family's tradition, I figure I better enjoy the extended family while we live close to them.
Thursday morning we took it easy, baked some pies, and mozied on over to Plano after lunch. We had a lovely Thanksgiving dinner with all the fixings. Those are the meals I wish my stomach fit more food. By the time I'm full, I'm definitely not done eating yet. After letting it settle for a few hours, we had an array of pies to choose from. Pumpkin chiffon, Pumpkin cheesecake, banana creme, choloate pudding pie, and pumpkin cupcakes, just to name a few.
I hit the sack early, because of course the next day was Black Friday. Again, I was unsuccessful in finding a shopping buddy, so I longingly watched those others in the mile-long lines as they chatted and enjoyed themselves just so much more than me. This year was the first time I didn't have any specific things I just HAD to buy. I mostly bought clothes, and some linens, and just 3 little toys at Walmart. Part of the fun is just watching all the other crazies. I came "this" close to buying a $60 GPS at walmart. Not because I need one, but just because it was only $60! It would cost me more than that to update the maps on mine!
After 7 hours of shopping, I headed back to my in-laws to help decorate their house. My Christmas decorations consist of a tree, and the ornaments that go on it. It's just too much work to put it up, and store it the other 11 months of the year. Liz however, has a completely different point of view. Her whole house is transformed. And somehow she fits all of those decorations under the stair. I am wondering if she secretly has a Mary Poppins bag stashed under there!
The party kept going at Uncle Bill's house. A "leftover" lunch, turned into a whole day of eating yummy food, watching movies, chatting with cousins, and swimming for the kids. Several of Joe's cousins were in town, and Joe was excited to spend some time at the movie theater with Johnny. This gave me the opportunity to chat with Mamie, Kelsey, Billy, and Sarah. I feel so blessed to know all of Joe's cousins. (on his mom's side). All those Benac reunions really paid off.
By the time Joe got back, it was pretty late, and uncle Bill bribed us to stay with the promise of a big breakfast. He wasn't joking, and we enjoyed a bunch of good fixins. Winter has adopted aunt Barbara as her third grandma, and was just tickled to death to hang out with her, go on walks with her, and play at the park. Somehow, time disappears when you spend time with the Benacs. We finally made it home after 1 today.
I was freaking out just a little, because I have to speak in church tomorrow, for the first time in 8 years. I had gotten started on my talk just a little bit on Monday, but still had a lot of work left. No wonder I try to get out of speaking by bribing to play the harp (Br Hadsall didn't go for that!) Also, I have 3 harp performances this next week, and not enough practice time under my belt. I feel much better now, with my talk written, and some good practice time done.
4 weeks ago