Christmas Break was... not relaxing. There was too much football and trash accumulation for my liking. But that's ok, because it was entertaining and interesting and full of family and Wii and shopping.
We played at my childhood park:
Tim went to the zoo with Theodore and cousins:
We witnessed a rocket launch:
(Photo Credits: Sister Lauren)
I bought wayyyyyy too many clothes (correction and clarification: my mother bought me way too many clothes for my tiny closet/nonexistent dresser).
We got really lame family pictures taken, but my mom loves them so I guess that's all that matters:
(can you tell it was nap time for a certain toddler?)
(Photo Credits: Picture Perfect at Columbiana Mall)
We visited wonderful friends (the McLean family, the kids I used to nanny for, who I shared a delightful afternoon with) and had one wonderful friend visit us (my high school friend Alice who is now a real adult with a full-time job and her own house!). I wish I had more time to see others since I don't anticipate returning to South Carolina anytime soon (especially after the flight on the way home, no daddy to help and a fidgety and unentertainable 16-month-old). But we definitely got enough of the people we went home for... mom/dad/siblings/niecesandnephews. Lauren's kids were delightful and I don't think I ever realized just how much I love hanging out with my sister-in-law. Of course, there was also the amazing holiday dinners and lunches provided by my mom/grandma/aunt. I missed collards and black-eyed peas for New Year's Day feast. YUM.
My family was super helpful with Theodore, there was always someone willing to play with him, give him a bath, feed him lunch, and change his dirty diapers. My mom was great and put him to bed (aka: laid in her bed with Sesame Street on until he fell asleep) on the nights I wanted to play games. And I LOVE to play games. I don't know why we don't do it more often, but the nightly routine of Phase 10, Rook, Ticket to Ride, and Settlers was so much fun (and overly competitive).
And though I won't miss the constant stream of criticism and parenting advice and Styrofoam plates, I will miss my family and the togetherness (and the dishwasher and bath tub). We may not be perfect and we may fight like we hate each other, but we really don't.