This year our holiday season was wonderful. We were able to spend a lot of time with both of our families and had a chance to rest, relax and take a break from the normality of life. We started the festivities on December 20th when we enjoyed a Christmas celebration with our friends (which I posted about here). The next day, I left with the fabulous dude's cousin to head to my in-laws. I spent a few days there with my fabulous dude's family getting things prepared for the holidays.
On Christmas eve, my hubby and the rest of his siblings arrived. We were very excited to be all together because it doesn't happen often. We were all together until the 27th when his oldest sister and family had to head back home. During that time, we enjoyed Christmas morning together which is always a great time with three kids in tow. Our nieces are now 7, 3 and 2 so they are all at an age where they really have a blast with Christmas. Evan gave me a very special gift this year, which you will see in the pictures below. He made a beautiful Hope Chest for me, which is now sitting at the end of our bed. It is certainly something to be cherished, that I hope we will someday be able to pass on to our children. On boxing day, we had a grand feast with the extended family and then spent the evening skating and curling and then playing tennis on Wii at his Aunt and Uncle's house.
We left their house on the 28th, with a quick detour to Vaughn Mills Mall. Evan and I were able to enjoy a quiet day together (if going to a mall that is completely packed is considered a quiet day) and recharge our batteries before gearing up for Christmas #2. We arrived at my parents house that afternoon. The following day, my brother and his wife and my sister, her husband and our nephew arrived. We all spent the week together and enjoyed a lot of laughter, food and fun. Thankfully, we were all able to avoid the Christmas Bugs that seemed to be going around. We played board games, Wii, went out for walks and just had a down-right great time.
Over the course of the holidays, I was continuously reminded of the incredible blessing that a family is. How lucky we are to be able to spend two weeks with our loved ones, enjoying each other and having a great time. I realize that not everyone is blessed to have a family who enjoys each other's company or even to have a family at all. No matter what happens in my life, no matter where I am, I always come back to my family. I am entering the new year with a renewed appreciation for each and every member of my family (including the Jib).
Here are some of my favourite shots from the holidays. I hope you enjoy ...