I know that Christmas was almost 3 weeks ago, but I finally have time to reflect on the 2005 Christmas season. It was by far the busiest December EVER, but was filled with LOTS of good times with family and friends. Here's a little play by play of our 2nd Christmas together:
-(Nov. 19th-20th) Marty and I sang in the Christmas Musical at our church. Yes, I know that it was a week before Thanksgiving, but hey...it's not like anyone had another Christmas program to go to!!
-(Dec. 13th) I was invited to participate in a Cookie Exchange with some ladies from our church. 11 batches of Magic Cookie Bars later...it was a good time, and great to meet some other people from our church.
(Dec. 17th) Christmas dinner at the Dillard House with my Dad's side of the family. I have never seen so much food in my life! For 12 people, they brought out 15 dishes (excluding desert)!!
(Dec. 18th) Got together with Brooke & Lori to exchange gifts. Brooke gave Lori and I a trip to Atlanta for a weekend in May for shopping and eating and to see they play "Wicked"! (It's the Wizard Of Oz story from the Wicked Witch of West's point of view.) What a thoughtful friend.
(Dec. 20th) Marty and I went to Hayesville, NC for a Fondue Party at Andrew & Diana's. There was chocolate dipping going on, cheese dipping going on, caramel dipping going on, and of course some game playing going on.
(Dec. 23rd) This day was "Christmas" with Marty's parents, sister and grandparents. Itis always so much fun to exchange gifts with them, and there's always that guarantee of more wrapped up snowmen than anyone can count.
(Dec. 24th) Busy day! Christmas breakfast at Daddy & Janice's house started our day. Then after too much food, a nice nap,and of course lots of play time with Jordan (my step-sister Amber's little boy) we were off to our next destination...dinner at Mom & Marvin's. Mom taught me (and I wasn't a very good learner) how to crochet...it's a stick and some yarn...how hard can it possibly be!!!
(Dec. 25th) After church, Marty and I , amidst solving some crazy FedEx delivery issues, finished up with the preparations for my mom's extended family's Christmas gathering. Since this was our first Christmas in our new house, we decided to have it here. It was such a blessing to have everyone over...and quite a funny time, too.
(Dec. 26th-29th) This was my first time going to Louisiana for the Gilbert family Christmas. With all 5 of us in one car for 10 hours, it was a good time waiting to be had! There was LOTS of rest during these few days, which I was certainly ready for. We also got hooked on Su Doku puzzles while we were there. Then, after a few days, we were headed back to NC...in one car...for 10 hours...all 5 of us. Good times.
(I know what you're thinking...Christmas is only one day...December 25th. Well, that would be WAY too simple for us and our family...and it's not over yet!)
(Dec. 30th-Jan. 2nd) After very little sleep, and very little time to recover from our LA trip, we were in the car again heading to Raleigh to stay with one of Marty's best friends from college, Aaron, and his family (wife, Eli and 2 year old, Bella). This trip was a complete mystery to me. All Marty would let me know was that we were going to Raleigh to stay with the Hawkins family but there was more planned than that. There was some shopping involved, some very good hang out times, and as always, LOTS of fun Bella time. On Mon, Jan 2nd, Marty and I were to meet some friends of his from grad school at Duke for lunch and then finish our adventure with a trip to the Duke Bookstore (or so I thought). Marty still hadn't revealed his plan to me. After lunch, we were on our way to the Duke Bookstore, and there was a guy standing on the sidewalk with a sign that said "Need Tickets", and immediately I knew his plan...HE WAS TAKING ME TO A DUKE GAME!!! I had told him ever since we got married that I wanted to go to a game, but tickets are ridiculous to come by, and I thought that it was a dream I was never going to get to live out. BUT, IT HAPPENED! MERRY CHRISTMAS TO ME!!! It was an AMAZING experience, and by far the best surprise EVER (well, besides that time he proposed to me!)!!! Marty says I was "like a kid in candy store." They played Bucknell, and of course they won. I learned a few things that day: 1-JJ Redick rocks my face off. 2-Walking in the pouring rain for like a mile without an umbrella is only fun if it is followed by a Duke game. 3-Dropping my wool coat into a puddle of freshly spilled coke is only ok if it's at a Duke game. 4-MY HUSBAND IS AMAZING!!! What a blessing to have someone in my life who hears me talk of this far fetched idea for a year and a half, and do everything he could to make it come to life.
So, a month and a half of Christmas was GREAT!!! We are so blessed to have such amazing friends & family to celebrate the birth of Jesus with. And, I look forward to MANY more years of making fun traditions.