The best Christmas
This was the best Christmas I think we've ever had. It was great! Everyone was healthy, there wasn't any major drama (just small annoyances), great food & special family time just for us. I really don't think it could have been any better. YEA!
The Grandparents came into town on Saturday afternoon & stayed at a nearby hotel. It was Grandpa L's birthday, so we all went over to the hotel for pizza & swimming. We had to get Logan a happy meal on the way over because pizza sauce has garlic in it (& it was Logan's lucky day, because he never gets happy meals). Even though he didn't eat the pizza, he still broke out into hives by just being around it. Afterward, I let him go swimming anyway (still covered in hives & rashes) & he had a blast swimming with Bill. Aunt Ju-Ju, Uncle J & Cousin B went swimming too, while I opted to hang out on the side with the Grandparents. After that, we all went back to their room for cake while Logan & Cousin B ran around & chased each other.
The small things that bothered me was that Grandma L bought Logan some Christmas pajamas that she expected the kids to wear on Christmas Eve, even though we bought Logan a pair. Then she also bought the kids 2nd year Christmas ornaments. These things bothered me only because these are traditions that we have & they are things parents should be doing for the kids. Whatever. It wasn't anything to have a conversation about. Logan's ornament went into our Christmas decoration storage box (along with the one he got last year) & he'll wear his pajamas later.
Sunday morning I went Christmas shopping with Grandma L & Aunt Ju-Ju...alone. I was pretty freaked out about it considering one of my requests since "Black Christmas" was that I was to never be alone with them in the same room. I'd had conversations with friends where we would joke about taking my own "special" sippy cup with me, but I kind of took it seriously that morning. At 9:30, I ended up spiking my coffee to calm own a bit. And let me tell you, that was the best idea ever. My nerves chilled out & it made for a much more enjoyable shopping trip (& no, I was not drunk). Grandma L decided that it would be best if she gave Aunt Ju-Ju & me a budget to work with & we just pilled the toys that we wanted up in our own shopping carts. It worked for us. After we were finished & the kids had their naps, we went over to Aunt Ju-Ju's for dinner & the kids played together some more.
Monday morning we went out for breakfast with The Grandparents & took them downtown to showoff Bill's office. It was really cold walking around & there was a huge line to see Santa. The night before, we decided that we would skip out on this because it would be a traumatic experience for Logan as he's super cautious about strangers. While walking around to check out the ice skating rink, Grandpa L lit up a cigarette & Grandma L told Logan to run up & walk by him. I quickly told Logan that Grandpa was smoking so he had to walk on the opposite side of me (as far away from Grandpa L as possible). Everyone got super quiet & Grandpa L walked slower & behind us. We decided at that point to all go our separate ways & meet back up for Christmas Eve dinner.
Later that night we went over to Aunt Ju-Ju's for dinner & to open presents. The kids had a great time & everything went well with the family. It was a little annoying to try & get pictures of Logan while Grandma L was right there with her flash, but again, whatever. The grandparent paparazzi didn't last long & I couldn't get decent pictures anyway because Aunt Ju-Ju's house was dark & we have a crappy camera for taking picture of toddler tornadoes. The fun part was Cousin B trying to copy everything that Logan did. He wanted to play with all of Logan's toys & drink from Logan's sippy cup. It was almost like Logan had a little tag-along brother. It was too cute.
Christmas morning we woke up & had our Christmas. It was really cute watching Logan pull presents out from under the tree. He had so much fun. After we opened all of the presents, Bill & I made breakfast together. I made cranberry-pistachio muffins & Bill made the sausage-hash brown casserole. It was a really, really good breakfast. For the rest of the day we just lounged around in our new Christmas pajamas & hung out.
Later in the afternoon I started to get dinner ready (burgundy beef & mushroom stew) & the Grandparents came over. Again, Bill left me alone with Grandma L while he ran out with Grandpa L to fix something on their car. It was very quiet between the two of us & I just focused on making dinner rather than small talk. When Bill & Grandpa L came back, they started to get a game of poker ready while I finished up. We played a few games while Logan napped & the stew cooked. Dinner turned out great (the best meal I've ever made according to Bill), it was just a very quite meal. There was virtually no conversation at all. Afterward, we went back to the hotel to go swimming again (the grandparents hung out on the side). Logan had so much fun, I think we'll have to get him into swimming lessons this next summer.
Bill went to work this morning & things are getting back to normal. I'm getting all of Logan's new toys organized since he hit the jackpot this year. I think I'll take down the tree tomorrow morning & get everything cleaned up. We had our last lunch with the in-laws & even though it was a relatively painless Christmas visit, it's nice to get back to our routine again.
I'm exceptionally thankful this year that we had such a great Christmas. Family issues aside, we were able to spend some happy times together at home, making our own traditions. It was very special to watch Logan get excited about presents & everything that Christmas means to a kid. There were times when a Toys for Tots story would feature on the news & knowing how close we can all be to those situations, I was greatful that this Christmas was so good to us.