Thursday, December 31, 2009

After Christmas

As I mentioned before, younger folks on both sides of our family rebelled against tradition this year. My side of our family traditionally gathers at Nana's house Christmas afternoon. This year, we saved our get-together for the day after Christmas. Unfortunately, David had to work and couldn't be there.

Jack took comfort in having Irish by his side

and his beloved Tunnel

Because they had already had their family celebrations, some good friends extended family were able to join our crew.

Mr. Austin


We didn't completely break from tradition though...

Somehow I managed not to get pictures of everybody. Wonder who did not want to stick around while each group sat on the couch with Nana?

He had other plans in mind.

Glad I went with him or I might have missed this....

Noah the car model.

I did get a few shots inside though.

Here's Uncle Rick with his camera. If you blow up the picture and lighten up the background you will see my cousin Ninfa and her husband Tony in the background. Evidently in the three nights that they stayed with us, I had no oppurtunity to take a clear picture of them.
I did however get this shot of Ninfa's kids and my cousin Ronnie's daughter with Nana.

The bride to be, sweet Christy,

and her intended, Ricky,

have set a date in March.

Here's Nana and her two girls.

*Sorry Dad and Uncle David I missed it if/when you posed with Nana.

Here's my clan minus David.
Top left to right then the bottom Me, Oma (Anne), Nana, Opa (Dad), Noah, and Jack.

Evidently I was saying something hilarious.

Here's Nana with her grandsons that were present.

Here's Nana with all her granddaughters.

Here's a sweet shot of Ronnie and his daughter, MacKenzie.

Then it was time for the unveiling of the afghan this year. Nana makes an afghan each year for one of her grandchildren. This year's lucky recipient was Deborah.

Here's Noah opening his great gift found by his brother-in-law, David.

A battleship! He was thrilled and set to work putting it together immediately.

I don't remember taking this picture of Dad but I like it. He looks like he's enjoying some quiet reflection.

Well, that's it for the big Christmas celebrations this year. Hope you enjoyed all the pictures!

Don't forget to check out the latest installment of Life is Therapy.

More Christmas

Another bonus to being home Christmas Day! Jack's big brother, Patrick, his sister-in-law, Holly, and his niece, Elise, came by for a visit.

Apparently Jack was fascinated by Elise's hair.

I was fascinated by the very girly and cute cotton dress that, as we found out later, was also very stain and water resistant.

We had already done some of our present exchanging at the whole family get together the week before but we saved a few items for opening on Christmas Day. As you can see, Jack just loves this part of Christmas gatherings.

Elise and Holly went to see Princess and the Frog for their first just Mommy-Daughter movie so Elise loved her new Tiana doll

and her new Princess Tiana book.

Patrick was thrilled to be the first to give his little brother a remote control vehicle. Jack loved the squishy new car with the big wheels.

Then, Elise proved that it's not just Jack. The newly renovated play area is just too attractive for any kiddo (even a kiddo with brand new toys) to resist.

In fact, Elise's favorite thing was the bucket of miscellaneous freebie toys.

She dug right through it to see what treasures she could find

and prompted her mother to ask if she planned to put her mouth on everything in the bin.

Of course not, Mommy!

But, wait! Where was Jack while all this playing was going down?


*Keep your eyes peeled for the new t-shirt Jack got from his cousin. I'll have to get a picture of him wearing it soon. It's too cute!

Don't forget to check out the latest installment of Life is Therapy.

Christmas Morning

Santa came to our house and look at all the loot he left!!!

What do you think got Jack's attention first?
The nice tall plush giraffe?

The big wheel?

Um....hamster in a wheel?

Mmmm...' it was Elmo hanging out of the stocking, right?

Nope, none of the above. Jack walked in the living room, kind of nodded toward what Santa brought, and headed over to his newly renovated play area to delight us with his Schroeder from Charlie Brown impression.

We decided to take it easy and drink a little coffee and let Jack just take his time checking out all his new surprises. After what seemed an eternity, I could take it no longer and started the hamster spinning in the wheel. BINGO! Immediate attraction!

Oh boy! It's a hamster!

Let me look at it from the left.

Got to check the view from the top

and the right

and upside down!

Daddy, did you see my hamster?

After much, much hamster love, Jack turned his attention to his other things.
He went for a spin on his new big wheel,

he subtly cozied up to the giraffe,

and he and Elmo and Irish took a bath.

It really was nice not to have to rush through present opening and out the door.

Check out this week's latest Life is Therapy.

6 Things I Learned at the Parade and Zoolights Safari

1. Sitting and watching the Christmas parade is lame.

Jack wanted to walk along with all the people in the parade.

2.  It's really hard to capture the magic of Christmas lights displays on camera.

It really did look like this hippo was trying to chomp off Noah's head. I promise.

3. Noah really did convert.

4. My little brother is an animal tamer (and sea life exists alongside zebras).

5. Dad still has his tickle monster skillz.

6. We're a pretty good looking Alabama family.

Don't forget to check out this week's installment of Life is Therapy.