Before I get into our Christmas details, I just have to say that this post resulted in my first blogger meltdown! I spent most of the evening (Tuesday) working on a great post about our time in VA. I posted it to my blog, and then created a 2nd post about our stockings (which you can see successfully stuck around). Apparently the Word program I use over-wrote the first post when I created the second. I was SO upset! I stayed up way to late trying to find a way to recover the former post to no avail. So this is my second attempt documenting our time in the Commonwealth. (Be on the lookout for post about our snowy adventure and our time in NC).
This was the first year Timothy and I tried to celebrate Christmas together. The plan was to spend a few days before and Christmas morning in VA, and then spend Christmas evening and a few days after in NC. We kicked off our VA holiday with the Hollett (aka: Traynham/Pitt) family. Angela and Chris hosted a fabulous lunch at their home in Bedford on Christmas Eve-Eve. This was our first time out at their house, and it is beautiful. I am envious of all their closet space! We missed Brian, Jim and Justin (Jackson too), but we loved spoiling the babies – Lola, Zoe and Cade. There is just something so special about kids on Christmas. I love it. Mom, Tim and I stayed late and watched Transformers on Blu-Ray. Chris has a nice set-up in terms of video/surround sound/etc; it was pretty awesome. I can't wait to rent Transformers 2; I can't believe I didn't want to see these in the theaters.
On Christmas Eve we spent most of the day/evening at D's house hanging out with his Dad (Mark). Devon is of course in Uganda and we missed his being there, but it wouldn't have been Christmas Eve without spending a little time with a Murphy. We laughed, cooked and drank a few beers; all of which are definite in any Murphy house visit. We helped make cranberry sauce and homemade tortillas.
The tortillas were made to soak up a stellar pot of posole made by D's Mom. Devon's family is from New Mexico, and posole (a pork-based soup with hominy and red chili sauce) is a Christmas Eve tradition for many New Mexican families including D's. I am so thankful that this tradition found its way to Virginia, because it is definitely one of my favorites. Yummy!
Before AfterAfter posole and drinks with Becky, Wes and Co. we headed to 10 o'clock mass. I am not catholic, but this particular service at this particular church is my absolute favorite. It was a beautiful mass and was filled with the Christmas spirit; everything from the music to the homily.
Tim's family's Christmas Eve tradition is to go and buy stocking stuffers for one another. He and I decided to go shopping for stuffers after mass and ended up at Wal-Greens because they were the only place open; even Wal-Mart was closed. We enjoyed shopping for one another. Since Wal-Greens is considerably smaller than Wal-Mart we had to get creative with our sneakiness, making sure the we didn't see our goodies in the other person's cart. I would call our stocking-stuffer mission a success. We exchanged stockings on Christmas morning before we even got out of bed. Toothpaste, gum, and candy were in abundance.
Timothy and I started our own tradition last year. Since we are just starting our lives together, we don't have a ton of "personal" ornaments. My favorite part of decorating a tree is revisiting all the memories in each ornament; we don't have this yet. We decided last year to exchange one ornament each to begin our personal collection. This year we waited until the last minute, and did our ornament search at Wal-Greens as well.
Snowman for me Perry the Platypus from Phineas & Ferb
(Our nephew loves the show Phineas and Ferb & we spent a good part of Oct. watching it with him)
Christmas morning was filled with a traditional Hambrick breakfast. My Mom out-did herself once again: eggs, biscuits, gravy, country ham, sausage, hash, fried apples, grits and more! We were super surprised to see my Uncle Wes's truck out front when we pulled up; he decided to surprise everyone (especially Gail) and drove all the way from Kentucky early Christmas morning! We were so excited to have him there. After breakfast, we Skype-ed with Justin, Sara and Jackson in Alabama; we really missed having them with us, but we were thankful for technology. We exchanged gifts and laughed together the rest of the morning.
With our bellies stuffed and full of breakfast, we headed to my MaMa and Granddaddy's to celebrate Christmas with them and Dad. We had a wonderful visit together. We exchanged gifts, chatted and munched on homemade chex-mix.
I love spending a relaxing Christmas afternoon in my grandparent's living room; especially when we can watch the snow fall out their front window too!
Did I mention our Christmas was white?!?! Updates coming soon about our snowy adventure and our Christmas in NC.