Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas extravaganza

By K.J. Cardinal

On Saturday, Tiffany and Pete graciously opened up their awesome home to both the Cardinal and Denton sides of our family in one Christmas extravaganza in Northwood. As you can imagine, we had a blast.

First off, I just want to thank Tiff and Pete for doing this. Having one day where both families got together definitely helped us out the most as we didn't have to make two trips to two different destinations on two separate days like we've done in the past. I know it's a lot of work to host a party like that, but we definitely appreciate it. Thanks a ton.

Anyway, once again it was confirmed that Christmas time is my favorite time of year. Sure, I love the summers and being able to have work slow down and enjoy myself a little more, but there's nothing like spending time with our entire family during the holidays... especially now that there are so many little ones running around.

There were many highlights to the day... watching the kids open their presents, Yankee Swaps, FOOD, a big family photo with the Cardinal side of the family (see below) and many more. Throughout the day I was continually snapping photos and ended up with about 150 from the course of the days events. I am not exaggerating at all when I say that about half of them were of Natalie.

For those of you who have not met Natalie, you're really missing out. She's obviously as cute as a button, but there's this sweet innocence with Natalie that lights up a room and makes everyone around her happy. She just has a carefree attitude that is so infectious. I'm looking forward to Christmas day at Tiff and Pete's house again so I can see her in action.

While the little kids really stole the show at the party, I was also happy to not only see my grandfather, but to also see that he was doing so well. His Parkinsons has really taken its toll on his body, but his mind is still as sharp as a tack and he still laughs at my jokes, so he's clearly got his wits about him.

He's the only living grandparent that I have, but thanks to my Aunt Carol, I was also able to take some time to look back at my Mema and Papa. Aunt Carol very thoughtfully put together a scrap book of sorts for me, which features photos of my great grandparents and their lineage on my dad's side. I know I've stated it here many times, but my Aunt Carol values family and family history more than anyone I've ever met and her gift means so much to me. Definitely the biggest highlight of the day for me personally... thanks Auntie.

Christmas isn't here yet, but it's already been one of the best holiday seasons ever.

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