The rest of the week here in North Carolina has been delightfully quiet. One of the best things about coming to visit last year was being able to do absolutely nothing for such long stretches at a time. Watching a couple truly awful episodes of Mystery Science Theater 3000 together and doodling on the couch brought back such good memories when we would spent every Saturday morning together just like that.
Of course, no Christmas visit would be complete without plenty of sugar-loaded Christmas snacks. My mom made a couple jars of frosting-covered pretzels that were eaten almost right away. I also bought a tub of egg nog fudge for the family to try, but had unfortunately left it in my car when we were hurrying to the airport. Vivian saved the day by sending it via UPS, and we were able to receive it and devour it all on Friday.
On Saturday, Dad took me to the attic and showed me some of the family keepsakes from the vault, including old coins, watches owned by my grandfather and great grandfather, and other such heirlooms to be passed on eventually. We spent some more time playing Apples to Apples in the afternoon and watching the truly painful Castle of Fu Manchu, starring Christopher Lee in a role he’d most likely want to forget.
On Sunday, we were able to go to church together, and it was the first time I’d been able to attend my parent’s church in four years. It was nice to do it again before returning home for a taco lunch and a rousing game of Balderdash.
We dashed off to the airport later in the afternoon, but we first had to get the annual Family Christmas Photo, this time posing in front of Jonathan’s Patrick Swayze Christmas Bar Stool. We had a couple straight shots, but the picture you see above is the one we all seemed to like the best. Family togetherness just doesn’t get much better than this.
Look who came to meet me at the gate when Nathan and I arrived home: it’s my sweet Vivi, with her hair all bright red and carrying a bunch of happy Welcome Back balloons! Thanks so much, sweetie! I missed you while I was gone.