I've been doubly blessed this holiday season, blessed with an abundance of time with my son and his family. Five days in Orlando visiting Disneyworld and now for several days after Christmas.
My return home from Orlando was long, yet uneventful and safe, and I was greeted by a very grateful and affectionate kitty. She hates it when I go out of town, often expressing her displeasure by leaving one or two upchucks on the carpet in the living room or master bedroom. Miraculously there were no "gifts" left for me this time. One less thing to do when I got home.
A stock-up run to the grocery store and then I spent the next few days quietly enjoying old movies on TV, a few football bowl games, and getting caught up on my reading. I knew that I would again be seeing my son and his family after Christmas and I still had very recent memories of our vacation time in Florida just a few short days before, so spending the holiday alone was fine.
They arrived Saturday afternoon and I was ready for them! I made a run to the grocery store the day before and had plenty of fresh fruit and vegetables, milk, cereal, snacks. On their outbound leg of the trip, they only stayed over one night and then continued on to San Antonio to stay with some of son's college friends and to attend the Alamo Bowl game - Oregon (daughter-in-law's alma mater) vs. Texas).
A trip to Big Horn BBQ was definitely in the plans! I didn't feel like cooking and I knew they'd really enjoy this place. They had a great little combo band comprised of father doing vocals, 13 year-old son on drums, and girlfriend doing backup vocals. And as expected, the food was great and my grandson in particular really enjoyed listening and watching the little combo band play.
And then they came back to Houston on Wednesday and stayed a couple more nights! I had a crockpot dish - Texas sausage and fingerling potatoes in a southwestern roux - ready for them when they arrived.
The next morning they all went off to visit the Natural History Museum in Houston while I chose to stay back and avoid the Christmas-break crowds at the museum. I had stuffed peppers cooking in the crockpot when they returned home. Trevor and I made chocolate chip cookies for dessert later and there was plenty of relaxing and visiting for the rest of the afternoon.
before continuing on home to Louisiana Saturday morning, my little granddaughter came outside and helped me rake leaves in my backyard - such a good little helper! - while her mom took a quick trip over to Pearland Roasters to pick up some of their awesome freshly roasted coffee beans.
And then, too soon, we were saying our goodbyes in the driveway and they were driving away, the kids waving furiously. Now the house seems so quiet and empty! Their toys are put away, no more cute little shoes lined up at the front door, no more tussles between siblings, no more little bodies to hug!