We got back from visiting Michigan a few days ago. Since we’re relatively close by, compared to previous stations, we like to spend as many holidays as possible in our home town visiting family and friends. We skipped Thanksgiving this year, but we were back up for Christmas, and it was a great trip. Driving up on the Solstice, we just missed the ice storm that had gone through, so we got the beauty of the sun shining through ice covered branches without the treacherous driving conditions. My mother in law was also one of the lucky ones that didn’t lose her power because of it, so we had a nice warm home to go to for our stay.
For the most part, it felt as though we were spending most of the trip on the road going back and forth between her home and my dad’s home so that we could wash diapers(and other clothes) and wrap gifts. We got to do other things, but I’m always baffled at how we can have so much time up there, but not enough to see all of the people we’d like to see and to do the things we’d like to do. I was able to get a couple of visits in to one of my sisters, as well as Aaron and I taking the kids to Santa’s house to visit with Santa. It’s a chilly wait there, but it’s so much fun!
On Christmas Eve, we went to the midnight service at my husband’s church, then came home to open our new pajamas and snuggle into bed. This was the first year that Little Bug really “got it” and it was a lot of fun to see her reaction on Christmas morning upon seeing the gifts under the tree and filled stockings by the fireplace(Not to mention the thank you note left by Santa for the cookie and carrots she left out for him and the reindeer.). After checking out our stockings, we ate breakfast, opened gifts, and prepared for family to come over for an early dinner. It was a full house, with aunts, uncles, and cousins all gathering together for good food and lively conversation. It was great to see all of the kids playing together, and I loved meeting family I hadn’t had the chance to meet before this.
Yesterday, the kids and I braved the cold here in Ohio and went to the zoo for their Noon Year’s Eve celebration. I’m not ashamed to admit that we did not make it very long, it was much colder than last year(the wind didn’t help, either)! It took us longer to get bundled up and out of the house that it took for me to call it quits. However, it really is a fun thing that the zoo does. There’s no added cost to your admission, and they have special shows and crafts for everyone, and it’s topped off with a ball drop at noon. There’s music and dancing, characters to get your photo taken with, and best of all: the animals! Some are tucked away, due to the cold, but it’s always fun to wander the zoo. We have done this the last two years, and(as long as we’re still here) will most certainly do it next year.
What are your favorite things about the holidays? Do you have any traditions that you look forward to every year?