The kids were up bright and early on Christmas but they had to stay upstairs until Mommy said it was OK to come down. Aunt Kristin helped them pass the time at the top of the stairs.
It's a good thing we took pictures the night before because it took no time at all for the room to descend into chaos.
Santa was good to me and Ted. We got new camping chairs, an I-Home for our I-Touch, Wheel of Fortune, Amazing Race and Bowling Wii games, another set of remotes for the Wii, a cover for my Kindle, Wii Fit and Board and a gift certificate for Amazon. Good thing we have the Expedition to get all of this home.
We had our traditional German breakfast of goetta and toast before we started preparations for dinner. Of course we had to have a "few snacks" for the company coming over.
There was another round of presents and more paper strewn about.
Kristin's friend, Dr. Varde (Sheetal to us) arrived with a huge fruit basket. She said she hoped we didn't mind but she was re-gifting it to us! That tells you how much she feels a part of our family. When it was close to dinner time, Kara noticed her neighbors were home. They are Chinese and usually travel during the holidays. She called them and they and their daughter Angela came to eat dinner with us. Sheetal and Kristin got within a half hour of eating at the adults' table but, alas, once again they ended up at the children's table. This is a running joke within the family too.
We played Catch Phrase and laughed until we cried. Some were rolling around on the floor laughing. Cassie told her mother that if we were playing Survivor she would vote her off the island after losing a point. No present in the world can ever be as good as having your family all around laughing and playing together.
Sunday we girls went shopping at Great Lakes Crossing. It has been 15 years since we moved from this area and I was amazed at the amount of Middle Easterners present. I thought I was north of Dubai instead of Detroit. I can really see a change in the demographics of this area.
We shopped Lord & Taylor where we found $108 cashmere sweaters for $20, Jones of New York where Kara tried on every pair of slacks in the store. She is very disproportionate top to bottom and is having a hard time getting clothes right now. Since she doesn't stay in a size for long, she doesn't want to invest great amounts in these transitional clothes. We found great bargains and she came home with two pairs of slacks, two skirts, a pair of jeans and several tops. We stopped at Strasburg Children and I bought gifts for Katie and Collin who we will see today. Shannon's parents have been so good to Morgan and Sam through the years that I wanted to reciprocate now that they have two grandbabies. Shannon has been part of our family almost as long as Sheetal.
We all met at St. Andrews for Mass at 5:00 (though some of us shoppers were a tad bit late!) and then went to Big Boy for dinner. It was the only restaurant that could put 11 of us all together right away. We had eaten at Olga's at the mall and weren't too hungry but the guys had all skipped lunch and were more than ready to eat.
Today is a "let's get our act together" sort of day. We are taking Kristin to the airport tomorrow for a noon flight and heading to Celina, OH. Kara is expecting more company passing through from Chicago to New York. We are having dinner at Kelly's later today so we need to have things ready for Tuesday morning before we leave for there this afternoon.
I'm glad we aren't any further east than we are. Those folks are having bad travel days!