This was my first Christmas with the West family, and it was indisputably a wonderful time. So many things happened and I had such a good time that I can't possibly write every detail of it here. So, I'm going to steal a technique I learned from my father-in-law and give you the top tens of the vacation.
My Top Ten Favorite Things About This Christmas Vacation:
1. Playing with Gigi.
2. Talking books with my sisters- and mother-in-law.
3. Playing Mario Galaxy with Little James- seriously, that was a blast.
4. Christmas shopping with the whole family and conversation with Dad West over lunch at McDonald's.
5. The food: homemade ice cream, tons of chocolate, and delicious meals. Mmmm.
6. Our awesome Lord of the Rings Marathon!
7. Being exposed to new tv shows and movies--including Firefly, Serenity, Twelve Angry Men, and yes--even Night at the Museum.
8. Meeting Tim and getting to know everyone better.
9. James getting his face cast done by Tim, and then scaring Anthony with the plastic mold of my husband's head.
10. Christmas pajamas.
My Top Ten Favorite Things about the Road Trip:
1. Not dying when we ran off the road in Nebraska, and getting rescued by some nice Air Force boys to boot.
2. Stopping to meet Heidi and her family.
3. Free breakfast at Penny's Diner in North Platte, Nebraska. Really nice people, great food and fun, classic atmosphere. We haven't shut up about it since.
4. Listening to musicals--Newsies, Les Mis, Phantom, Into the Woods, Wicked, and Trail of Dreams. Can't get better than that.
5. (And this one's really the best) Stopping in Ohio to see Chauncey and Melanie, Little Chauncey, Jackson, and Kate.
6. Their hot chocolate maker--we're obsessed! We want one now.
7. A side trip to Kirtland where I learned the meaning of the phrases "The whole nine yards" and "Let's get down to brass tacks."
8. Playing DDR with Melanie.
9. Allison's delighted exclamations of "Snow!" as the fierce winds blew gusts of snow across the road and I hid my face in my pillow.
10. Getting home, safe and sound, eating some pizza and sleeping in my own bed.
And now, for your enjoyment, some pictures:
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