Tuesday, December 30, 2008

3 Christmases


I hear the new movie "Four Christmases" is essentially about a couple whose participation in four family holiday gatherings on Christmas Day composes a 2 hour comedy (i think? help from anyone who has seen it!
We didn't make it to FOUR Christmases. And it wasn't in one day. And only some parts were funny enough to be featured in a comedy.

But it sure was a whirlwind! And a blast. And packed with memories. And filled with love. We left Rochester on Friday night at 5:00pm and arrived in Logan, Ohio at 5:00am (11 hours of driving, including the time change)! Pulling the all-night driving drill was really smart, as it turned out, because our beloved son was a sleeping angel through 99% of the journey. Scott's Dad and Diane were first up! We got to visit in their BRAND NEW HOME (the HOUSE isn't exactly new, but the renovations and cosmetic details were all done by their choosing before they moved in - felt VERY new). This is the first home Ricci has owned, being a methodist pastor his entire adult life, so a BIG, FUN step! Speaking of steps, poor Diane had the misfortune of breaking her ankle more than a month ago and so she was hostage to the recliner most of the time. The yumminess of that visit included Scott's famous chocolate cookies, Ricci's famous cube steak and mashed potatoes, and - of course, Logan's finest pizza joint: Pizza Crossing. It goes without saying, but Jackson just fell in love with his g-parents all over again in Logan. He couldn't give them enough hugs and kisses!

Then on to Columbus to love on Grandma Lynette and Poppy (Henry). Highlights there included my first time viewing of "White Christmas" (but then those ice storms came through, so the cable was disconnected part-way through - i got the gist though). That viewing, coupled with previously watching "Holiday Inn" with Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire, has now transformed me into a complete and total old-movie FREAK. I'm obsessed. They are so cleverly done, funny and clean and cute and simple depictions of life and love. I'm hooked. We were able to celebrate with Doug and Aimee, son and daugher-in-law of Henry's and their darling baby Dillon. And we BARELY squeezed in a visit with Craig and Anita Sutherland and their babes, Grace and Ella, and Theresa (and family) and KK. Fairy Godmother Becky and Uncle Dick attended the Christmas Eve service at Lewis Center Church where Lynette had her biggest night of every year. She even hosted Becky and Dick to dinner at her place INBETWEEN the services. What a champ! I love the Decker home for the following reason (among many others): When I mentioned that it had been awhile since I had last eaten those no-bake chocolate treats, no sooner had the words left my mouth than did Lynette have out the Quaker oats, peanut butter, and cocoa. Aww, the sweet pleasure of being a guest!
Then on to Louisville Christmas Eve night, where we opened up gifts early (love that NEW tradition!) with us, Justin, Dad and Nancye in front of a toasty fire. We spent the next day with the McClains at Aunt Lisa and Uncle Brad's. Grandmom and Grandad never fail to impress with a family game (always, cash is involved somehow!). And the cousins entertained each other. Later that night, Scott, Jackson, Justin and I had the chance to visit with Nancye's family (kids and dad). Probably one of my favorite days overall was the 26th. We got to celebrate Mom's birthday with one of her favorite traditions - breakfast pizza - in the morning with the immediate family plus the GGs. They stayed a little longer for foot rubs (ha!) and good conversation. Then, off to bowling, one of my Dad's famous holiday traditions (who bowls at Christmas? The JOHNSON'S do!). Then, the evening meal was neat for me, because I could celebrate my Dad and brother's birthdays, which are both in December and which I am never able to be apart of, with their dinner favorite and dessert favorite.

And - to top it all off - we added a little sugar on top with a visit on our way home to the Chicago condo of cousin Steve and his girlfriend Jenn's. (so sorry I didn't contact yall, Rachel and Sarah - my other Chicago girlfriends - we just had NO POSSIBLE moments to squeeze in!). Sweet home. Sweet people. Sweet Chicago pizza that night. Thanks, guys.

We're home. It's snowing. And things are JUST about back to normal. Now, it's time to take down the Christmas decorations this weekend. Woohoo.

Happy New Year!


Tiffany McCallen said...

David's parents live in Logan so I am more than familiar with Pizza Crossing. That IS tasty pie.

bb mcclain said...

It was so nice to see everyone together Christmas Day. That Jackson is something special and I can't wait until his sibling arrives. Take care and all of you have a Happy New Year.