This year our family had not one, but TWO Thanksgiving Dinners, the first was November 8, when Alan was home. It was fun, but kind of strange mixing two families and their holiday traditions together. (Aunt Khris' side of the family came to Grandma and Papa's for the first time to enjoy a sit-down dinner at one long table with us.) It was held so early in the month because Alan wont be with us for the actual Thanksgiving dinner, and the family agreed that we would celebrate early with him, as it's his favorite holiday!
Then a few short weeks later, it was time for Thanksgiving....AGAIN! This has always been my favorite holiday because of our family traditions. There are certain things I have come to count on at Thanksgiving. First, there will always be a long table that the whole family, along with any friends sit at together to enjoy the meal. Second, grandma's Thanksgiving table decorations had better find their way down the center of that table, or all is lost! And third, the year that BLACK OLIVES are forgotten will be a tragedy as my sisters, cousin and I will forever need them to take our yearly "Olive Finger" pictures! This year things were a little different. Usually, the whole family (meaning anywhere between 35 -50 people) go to my grandparents home, we set up one very long table that stretches diagonally across the room. When everything is all set up, there is hardly room to walk around. But this year, because my grandmother has had a few health issues, we decided to move Thanksgiving dinner to the church instead. And you better believe we had one long table, grandma's decorations and black olives! In the end, this worked out better as there was a place for the kids to play, people weren't sitting on top of one another and there was enough room in the kitchen to clean up (plus, there were two sinks, so clean up took half the time!) After dinner, my sisters and I had a little too much fun with my camera, but the pictures we got we AMAZING! We also good a good one of our family.
Now it is December and Christmas is in full swing here. There are Christmas lights on the house, but for one reason or another, they have decided they WILL NOT light for anything this year. They worked when we put them up in November (taking advantage of warm weather!), but when we plugged them in in November, much to our dismay, NOTHING! :( Oh well, at least there are also lights in the windows! Not to mention the three, yes THREE Christmas trees in our house. The one in the family room has all the ornaments my sisters and I get every year from our parents that represent something we did that year. So for example, I got my 21st ornament this year, she is a little angel called "The Angel of Talents" representing that I have decided on my major and as I continue in the program, my "talent" will be shaped and developed. In the front room there is the "White Christmas Tree", also lovingly known as the "Winter Tree." This special tree is done all in white, white lights, white snowflake and icicle ornaments with snow people surrounding it. I think it might be my favorite tree, it's just so beautiful when it's all lit up at night! The last tree has only been a part of our family for a year, so it is making its second debut in our formal dining room this Christmas! Thus, it is formally known as "The Cookie Cutter Tree!" To outsiders, our house may seem like Christmas exploded, but to me, it's perfect!