We were greeted when we drove up to the house by cheery Christmas lights hanging on the pergola. Thanks, Daddy :) It was good to come home to that, late at night, with the stars out and the air crisp and cool--it made it feel more like Christmas (you may remember I was having a hard time getting in the Christmas groove). We brought our bags in and said goodnight to Daddy and went to bed.
But Tuesday was Vivian's birthday, and there was work to do! Daddy went to work, and Taylor went for a run. So Viv and I tidied up the house and got out the Christmas decorations box (y'know those huge dishpack boxes that movers use?). Daddy had purchased a 3-food tree at a garage sale this winter (the flocked tree Momma got last year decided it was done (flockin' tree)), so Viv and I put the Small Tree up with Daddy's Santa ornaments on it, and Momma's wax angel from Germany. We also put lights around the window behind the tree. A very Christmasy room was the result.
Throughout the day we spent a lot of phone calls trying to figure out what we wanted to do for Viv's birthday dinner. We didn't really want to go out to eat, but we weren't really set up for cooking a big dinner at home (at Daddy's or Bethany's). So the verdict: sushi take-out!
Actually, it turned out pretty spectacular. We warmed up some leftover rice, and Bethany came out with her three sweetie-kids. Daddy picked up our sushi order on his way home from work. None of us felt bad for having take-out for dinner since none of us know how to make sushi better than a restaurant. But not to be outdone (what would Momma have said if we ate out of styrofoam on a birthday?!), we pulled out Momma's kutani china, which looks beautiful under any kind of tasty food, and served the sushi on that.
And it was delicious! And so filling! And so blessedly easy :)
After dinner, we all sat down to chat and had a good evening. I gave Bethany (and Lorna) an early Christmas present, which they seem to be enjoying :)
And we made silly faces together.
Taylor and Michael wrestled.
Wednesday, the eve of Christmas Eve, we all (everyone) went shopping. It was then that I began to realize, in practical application, how hard Momma worked for Christmas every year. Granted, she was shopping for Christmas every time she was at the store throughout the year (how's that for foresight, eh?), but even so, it was just hard to find little things here and there that people would enjoy. But we had a good day spending time together.
I think T and Daddy had a better time once they freed themselves from the women and children, though.
Understandably. We're pretty silly :)