Tom Turkey is in the oven; the casseroles are waiting in the refrigerator; pies, cakes, and cookies are baked; candles are glowing in the windows while the Christmas tree lights reflect the presents under the trees. And Mimi is scurrying around the kitchen like a mouse in anticipation of cars pulling up the drive.
Finally . . .
Giggles, kisses and hugs . . .
They're all home for Christmas!!
With dinner in the warming drawer, the family leaves for the Christmas Eve Candlelight Service at church, glad to pause and acknowledge the real reason we're celebrating. After only one small incident with candle wax (which was, of course, caused by Mimi and just happened to involve Granddaddy), we dashed home to have our Christmas Eve dinner with the entire family.
Poor Beth started feeling sick during church and retreated to the bedroom downstairs during dinner.
The cousins all sing "Happy Birthday" to Jesus
David and Jess again get the award for furtherest travel since they traveled from Athens by way of Kentucky with a pitstop in Atlanta before arriving on the Acre. We're just glad they always can fit us in!
Just look how grown Mimi's boys are getting!!
We had our usual entertainment by the cousins . . .
(and, yes, there's always a game on!)
before opening gifts
Not sure why Cybie looks so sad . . .
could she have gotten in trouble?
for some strange reason the floor looks alot cleaner than usual with that many people opening gifts . . . maybe Granddaddy pulled a Pop and grabbed it before it hit the floor or Mimi was just late in getting a few pictures this year.
At the sound of Santa's sleigh bells and a glimpse of red in the sky, the extended family made their way through the woods and over the dell while the monkeys got on their Christmas jammies, sprinkled reindeer food, and left cookies for dear ole St. Nick before snuggling under snowflakes in the Nest to drift off while visions of sugarplums danced in their heads . . .