Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Home Sweet Home

We are home from our Christmas adventures, and there is just so much to tell. We had such a wonderful time spending this holiday with my family in New Orleans. We made many memories, had lots of laughs, and got to spend some quality time with my parents, my sisters, and some great friends. We are so blessed! Here are a few of the highlights:

Visiting My Grandmother in Baton Rouge: The Sunday before Christmas, my parents, my sisters, and Jonathan, Nora and I packed up and drove to Baton Rouge, LA (about 60 miles west of New Orleans) to visit my Grandmother Gloria, Aunt Kathie, Aunt Eileen and Uncle Wayne. My mom made homemade shrimp etoufee, which is divine, and we enjoyed a great dinner together. Afterwards, Nora opened some gifts from my Aunt Kathie because she was leaving town to visit her daughter in Houston and wouldn't be with us to celebrate Christmas Day. Nora got the cutest outfits for this spring and summer! The best part was Nora the Entertainer. I don't know what got into that girl! She was wild! She was doing all kinds of tricks and was showing off like she was all three rings in a three-ring circus. It was hysterical! My grandmother was in heaven and it was so good to see her having such a good time and enjoying her great-granddaughter so much.

Playdate with My Best NOLA Girlfriends and Their Daughters:On the Monday before Christmas, Nora and I met up with three of my best childhood friends for lunch. We gathered at Steph's house where Steph (Lydia is 15 months old), Chrissy (Ava is 2 and Sam is almost one), and Hope (expecting her first this summer) hung out for a few hours, caught up on all of life's happenings, and ate some good Chinese food. I've got some great pics of all the girls playing together. Let's just say, there was some drama with all those girlie hormones!

Salon Day with Mom and Emily:As a Christmas gift, my mom treated my sister Emily and me to a haircut and color at H20 (an awesome salon in NOLA where my mom goes). I knew about this hair appointment for a month or two before coming down, so I was so excited to enjoy a few hours away from it all to get my hair done. It's the best, isn't it! I got some new highlights and a great cut! My favorite was the shampooing part....I mean, that was the best head massage I have ever received. I think I fell asleep. Anyway, we were at the salon for about 4 hours....I know, but it was the day before Christmas Eve and the place was buzzing with women. We had a great time together! Thanks Mom!

Family Christmas Eve Lunch at the Galley:Christmas Eve Day was a busy one. My sister Emily's boyfriend, Charlie, arrived in New Orleans bright and early. It was his first visit to New Orleans, so Em wanted to show him around. Of course, we all insisted he be treated to some wonderful food for lunch since he hadn't experienced it very much, so the whole fam went to lunch at the Galley--probably one of our favorite local, family-run seafood joints. We had such a good time! The weather was in the 70s, so it was pretty warm for Christmas Eve, but that allowed us to eat outside which is always fun. We ordered the works (mostly for Charlie's benefit, but it was a ton of food, so we all ate it up): fried onion rings, fried crab claws, gumbo, fried shrimp and catfish poboys, and boiled crabs.

After lunch, Mom and I finished up Christmas shopping and went to the grocery to buy all the food needed for Christmas Day and Christmas Eve supper. Christmas Eve night we all went to my Aunt Donna and Uncle Tom's for a wonderful dinner and fun game of White Elephant.

Christmas Day Fun:As usual, we had all of my mom's family over for Christmas Day lunch. We had SOOOO much food! It was wonderful. I contributed a few things: spinach and artichoke dip as an appetizer (like we needed one ;), corn pudding, and a pecan pie.

Wii Antics:My sister Hillary got a Wii Fit for Christmas and we had so much fun laughing at each other play. My Wii fit age is 44! Apparently, I am "weak" and the Wii asked me if I fell down a lot because my balance wasn't very good. The funniest thing about the Wii Fit is that you can watch someone do an activity--like Slalom Skiing, for instance--and while the person doing it is doing horribly, it seems so simple! You're thinking, I can SO do that! Then, when it's your turn, you fail too! Hula Hooping is my personal favorite. I am TERRIBLE at it, but it was so funny to try and so funny to watch everyone else do. I so want a Wii Fit!

Sandestin, FL:On Saturday, we all drove over to Sandestin, a resort in Destin, FL. My parents rented a condo for a few days along with my aunt and her family. Jonathan, Nora, and I only stayed about 2 days, but we had a great time relaxing and spending time with the family there. Jonathan, Nora and I hit up the outlet mall on Monday and got our first onesies for Baby Boy Bradshaw. They are so cute and so tiny! I can't wait to try them on him.

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