Too fast to even blog about them! So here is the quick rundown of highlights in the order that they happened.
1. Being home for the holidays! There are so many wonderful memories that come flooding in as soon as I step in the door of my parent's house. We don't get to visit them often enough, even now that we live closer. This Christmas, Brooke and I were able to spend quality time together and we enjoyed every minute of it from discussing Twilight to making Greek pasteries for Christmas Eve.
2. Christmas Eve at my parents house is always a blast. My baby cousins are getting just old enough that they understand how great opening gifts can be. It was great to have my whole immediate family together plus lots of aunts and uncles and cousins.
3. Christmas Eve service at the church we were married in. This is the only tradition that Mark and I have established for ourselves, independent of our family. Each year, after a long Christmas Eve celebration at my parent's house, we drive down the road to reminisce about the day we were married and celebrate the joy of the Christmas season. It is wonderfully fulfilling and a tradition we hope to carry on for many years.
4. Seeing Yia-yia. She suffered from a few strokes this year. It was such a blessing to be able to spend time with her Christmas morning. Yia-yia was always so strong, despite her age, it came a huge shock when she had her first stroke. Now we are just grateful for each moment we have with her.
5. Seeing Mark's grandparent's new digs. They recently moved (quite a few times), and have settled into a lovely new neighborhood. We look forward to spending more time with them in their new home when we go back to PA this month.
6. Spending time with Uncle Nick and watching Sense and Sensibility, the BBC version. I highly recomend it!
7. The formal sit down lunch with Karlene, Katie, and Faith (plus significant others!). Karlene's mom was so kind to host us for lunch and serve us. It was the perfect opportunity for all of us to catch up. We never get to spend enough time together.
8. Brooke's basketball tournament. Yes, it is that time of year again, so get ready to hear about my little sister's basketball season!
9. After one of the games, my parents and grandparents took us all out to dinner (plus Sarah!) After dinner Brooke, Mark, and I went back to Sarah's for a hysterical evening of kareoke! Man, it was funny.
10. Not sure when in order this happened but we finally got a good picture of the 5 kids, Julia, Mike, Brooke + Mark and Me. It is so rare that we are all in the same room and presentable. Mom organized a photo shoot and it worked out well! We got a great picture of us all.