I was fortunate to end 2018 on a relaxing note. My husband, Tim, has Christmas shutdown at his work, and I was able to save enough vacation to take a few days off to spend most of that time together. This also allowed us to travel to and from Christmas celebrations, a birthday party and a New Year’s eve celebration without having to plan around my work schedule.
The week began with my sister-in-law’s 30th Birthday party. My brother helped arrange for both our family and Ashley’s family to gather at Montour’s semi-famous steakhouse, Rube’s, for a lovely dinner and social time with family and friends. Ashley seemed to love having everyone around to help her celebrate her special day. She is the last of us to join the 30 club, so we made sure she did so in style.
The following day kicked off a run of three Christmas celebrations in a row. The Rodgers Family Christmas kicked it off at my parent’s house in Garwin. It’s been wonderful to introduce my husband, Ashley and my sister’s husband, Justin, to our traditions these past several years. It’s still fun to go around the room to open gifts one at a time. It may take a little longer with nine people now, but the result is well worth it. Once again, I was overwhelmed by generosity of my family for the holidays. I enjoy getting each person a special gift, and they return in kind with some truly fantastic items for me.
On Christmas Eve, we enjoyed our long standing tradition of gathering at my grandmother’s house for the Bushong Family Christmas to celebrate with my mom’s extended family. Grandma got a new tree this year. It’s the same height but was a little skinnier than her last tree so that made plenty of room around it for the mountain of gifts. After our traditional family photos in front of the gift filled tree (Grandma was front and center as always), the madness began by passing out presents to the 30 or more people in the room. It would take far too long to open one at a time so everyone rips into their presents when they get them, particularly the little kids. Their joy at getting all of the new treasures makes the day more special.
The Pratt Family Christmas rounded out the celebrations on Christmas Day. Because Tim and I has the “new” house this year, so we hosted Tim’s family for the day. Tim and I were excited for it. We cooked a big meal, stocked up on plenty of snacks and prepared plenty of eggnog. Our first Christmas at our home was more than we could have hoped for.
Tim and I spent the remainder of the week spending time at our house, Tim’s parent’s house and my parent’s too. It was a fantastic week off, and just what we needed to end a very busy year for us.
The best part of the week was spending time with my husband. This was our first Christmas/New Year’s as a married couple, and it was nice to have those days together. As we get back to our regular routine, we hope our 2019 starts on the right foot. As I mentioned last week in my 2018 review column, this past year was a great one. Now as 2019 is beginning, I hope all of Tim and my goals for the year can start to come true.
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