Thanksgiving and Christmas

Hello all! I'm going to begin with last month's holiday and move forward.

My husband and I went to California to visit my family for Thanksgiving. We stayed with my grandma and had a lovely time. The night before Thanksgiving, we helped her prepare some things for the next day, including me baking cookies that did not burn. I can bake many things (bread, cakes, casseroles, bbq chicken, etc.), but I always seemed to burn cookies. Tragedy, I know. But lately, I've been getting better with them and I seemed to get it right that night.

The next morning they let me sleep in until 11am, which was odd (I'm usually pounced several hours before that). We had a lovely day talking with my cousins and my mother and siblings. The next day we went to the Newport Beach Temple to try and attend a session, but we got stuck behind an overturned semi precariously near the guardrail to our side of the freeway. We made it just barely too late and did other ordinances instead. We then went to my mother's and had a lovely dinner with family friends. That Saturday we finished a little bit of Christmas shopping and hung out with my grandma. The next day we went to church, her ward tried to recruit us to move in so I could join the choir (yes, really), and then we went up to my mom's for an early Christmas.

We had a lovely dinner, opened gifts, and just got to sit and enjoy each other's company. The next day my husband and I returned to Utah and managed not to destroy a car in the process. Though, if you are ever in St. George, go eat at Ronnie's Pastrami. I'm serious. You will not regret it.

December moved in a blur of blitz shopping in between school and church obligations. We had some quiet nights in there which were lovely. A few friends came over and we all sang carols in front of our fire. Naturally there was cocoa. It was a really special evening. we had a company party with my husband and his brother's work at a Brazillian BBQ restaurant and we got to all talk with them (my husband and his brother talk nearly every day, so it's a treat to chat with my sister in law, too).

Two days later, my husband and I approached the airport to go to Texas with mild trepidation. There was bad weather. Both our flights ended up being delayed constantly, so we ended up landing after midnight and not getting to the brother's home until after 1am, closer to 1:30. It was a total of 13 hours travel time when it should have been 8.

We had a great time visiting, though colds plagued the kids and I. We went to Austin and ate at Hobnoddy's, did some Christmas shopping there. We went to San Antonio and visited the Alamo and the Riverwalk. Christmas Eve began with watching the Hobbit and trips to ensuring there was an Aebleskiver pan so I could make breakfast. The family had never had it before. Now I believe my other brother in law is obsessed with the little tasty darlings--HA. Christmas day was a lot of fun managing the wrapping paper and making breakfast for an hour or so (I made a double batch). My husband and his brother went canoeing the day before we left and then we all went to the Austin Aquarium, which was very cool. All in all, we had a wonderful time with them and I just wish I hadn't had a persistent cold flaring up and dying down the whole time.

My husband and I's trip home was scarily efficient, especially in contrast to the last time. Everything ran on time and the planes even arrived early. Our last flight got us moved to seats together (YAY) and in the emergency exits over the wings, so he could stretch his legs out. 5.5 hours travel this time. Our house-sitter picked us up and we had another Christmas at home opening the presents under our tree.

Today, I sang in church and my husband's sister (okay, he has seven siblings; I really need to give them all nicknames or something) was gracious enough to offer to accompany me, so we practiced beforehand and I threw it all out there as best I could (still have a cold, so yeah). By the time Primary was over, I was gravelly and exhausted, so home, lunch, and nap. The husband did much the same, as he seems to have caught the bug finally. Eh, we should be fine in a day or two. We're enjoying the new books to read, I can tell you that! I have this week off of school, so I'm going to use it to regain my health and rest before diving back in. 6 more months and I graduate--woohoo!

Thank you all for making the holidays wonderful and for being the best family there is! Merry Christmas (belated) and Happy New Year!!!

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