Our Family Photos & Hosting Christmas

WARNING: Long personal post! Oh sweet Christmas! By far, it's my favorite time of year, and this year...I feel like we actually got to celebrate for an entire month! Had the Christmas shopping done early, tree up, house decorated...even had lights on the house this year(favorite!!)! Then we jetted off to VA for Christmas with Joel's family for a week on the 10th (I'm telling you, we really started early!). We had lots of time to relax while there, spent a day in DC getting in the festive spirit, ate lots of cookies, and watched my niece and nephew tear through tons of presents. It was fabulous. Once we got home from our trip, Joel went back to work and I became the Christmas elf getting the house ready for my grandmother to come to town! Wrapping the gifts, multiple trips to the post office, you know the drill. But before that, my dad's side of the family came to town, so we went over and celebrated with them a few nights in there too! Come Sunday, Emmy rolled into town setting a record travel time; not sure how she does it, but she claims she's not speeding.

So, this was a big year for Joel and I...something I feel like I've been slowly preparring for my whole life. Emmy always told me I'd be doing this one day...HOSTING CHRISTMAS. We hosted Christmas at our house this year! And by 'we' I don't just mean Joel and I. It took us all to do what Emmy usually does all by herself. Again, how she does it I'll never know. We'd do one meal at our place, then go over to my mom's, then my brother's, then the next day we ate at my dad's....but for Christmas dinner, we did it here. My dad cooked the meal though. Hosting the meal was something I hadn't given any thought to until an hour before it was time to sit down...

My mom asked for glasses to set the table...um, we don't have any that match! And chairs?! We don't have any real dining furniture yet, so we pulled pairs of chairs throughout the house. Apparently I like to buy chairs in pairs! A table? Well, hope all 6 of us can squeeze around a table for 4! Needless to say we will be investing in matching glasses and possibly a dining set this year in hopes of hosting again next year!

One other thing that was of the utmost importance while Emmy was in town was taking family photos! As a photographer, it embarrasses me to say the last time we took family photos was when I was in high school. HIGH SCHOOL PEOPLE. No one was thrilled to be out there at 8:00am, but hey, I'm so glad we did it! I already cherish these new photos so much! My dear friend, Kellie, was a trooper and snapped all these...so thankful for her!

We had such a great time celebrating this year and spending quality time with the family. I feel so blessed to have gotten so much time with everyone, near and far! Now that Christmas is over, I'm excited to get into 2013! We've got a few new plans ahead, so be on the lookout for updates!

Well there goes Emmy!

I think mom and I should have worn more sequins between the two of us. GLIIIIITTERRRR!!

Pretty typical.

This is my mom's dog, BJ...her and Betty are two peas in a pod.

I really wish I had taken more photos of Butters while I was wrapping presents this year. Talk about 'BEST DAY EVERRRR' for her. But a cat in a box will have to suffice.

My dad is SUCH an awesome cook.

One of my favorites Christmas traditions is fried shrimp! Emmy's too.

Hope you had a very merry Christmas too!