The second part of our Christmas journey

Here’s my much delayed post about the second part of our Christmas journey. I realize it’s really late, but I wanted to get something posted and on the record. Here we go:

We spent the days following Christmas in Springfield, Mo., at my parents’ house. We were joined by both of my sisters and their men and my Grandma Carol. We stayed for a few days, and we had a lot of fun.

Oliver immediately bonded with his “super-grandma.” It was really sweet to see him dig through his pile of books, pick one out and tear over to my Grandma Carol so she could read to him. Usually short on patience for long books, Oliver would sit through some long ones like the unabridged version of “The Cat and the Hat” as long as super-grandma was reading to him.

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Oliver also had a blast opening presents. We opened gifts the second night we were there and the following morning, and we went through stocking gifts that afternoon. Each time, Oliver would start with lots of enthusiasm and then eventually wear out, get crabby and require some sleep.

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Also joining us for the weekend were my sisters’ dogs. They were pretty fun together, and generally well-behaved. However, I now have a new appreciation for our goldendoodle Molly (we didn’t bring her; thanks to some free housing offered by my in-laws!). Scary as it sounds, Molly would have likely been the least “in-your-face” dog, and she definitely would have been the only dog to go potty after being asked just once!

Here’s Parker during one of the few moments where she was pooped out:

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And here’s Smith, also during a rare down moment:

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We really had a great time. My parents are awesome hosts and really made the visit special. We had a blast hanging out with Jennifer and her husband and Carrie and her boyfriend, playing dice, cards and Wii. And it’s always special when we get to see my Grandma Carol.

The last day we were there, my mom brought out a cake to celebrate my birthday a day early. It was great, too, and Oliver loved eating off my plate.

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Overall, this was one of my favorite Christmases of all time. We have lots of awesome memories to stay with us forever.

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