It was neat seeing her surrounded by her three best friends, beautiful women she has been friends with for years and years. Abby, as independent as she is, has always been good at making friends, friends who the rest of us steal from her from time to time.
On Sunday we had friends, family, and neighbors over for cookies and cocktails. The weather was too warm for plans of hot buttered rum, but it lent itself to porch playing and sitting. Kids ran and ran and records spun and it was merry and festive and an easy way to spend on Sunday.
On Christmas Eve we went to my grandma and aunt's house for their annual party that is loaded with more sweets than you can shake at stick at. The kids got their first Christmas presents but couldn't relax for fear that Santa might get to our house before they were safely tucked in their beds.
Christmas Eve did not bring much rest. The kids woke up over and over again, hoping to hear that it was finally morning. Meanwhile, Tom and I were fighting a stomach bug. But the magic of Christmas didn't need our energy to barrel through. It was once again declared the best Christmas ever, despite sickness, despite the fact that the wrong Skylander game was purchased. The kids were merry and bright, and I tried my best to match their enthusiasm.
And then it was off to my parents' house for bay views and grown up present exchanging, a brief nap back at home for me and Arlo, back to my mom's for a giant family dinner and foosball tournaments.
And now, hopefully, I remember these days, the Christmas they were eight and six and one. The Christmas I was a Scrooge who managed to avoid all the photos and my family pulled me through with their good cheer. I have more thoughts on family and my complete gratitude, but I'll save that for tomorrow. For now, I'm going to go figure out the new camera Tom got me, while listening to my kids play with their cousin in the basement.
Merry Christmas. We still have 10 days of it left.
I'm hoping they will be peaceful and merry and full of love.