Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Christmas in North Carolina

[Here begins a long-overdue series of back-dated posts... Seems a little silly to be posting Christmas photos in May, but the historian in me wants to get this all up on the blog, and these posts will eventually all go in our annual blog books, so here goes nothing!]

This year, we spent Christmas with my parents down in North Carolina.  It was a bit of a whirlwind trip, since we had the wedding of a very dear friend to attend at the end of December -- in Phoenix.  So we ended up only having a few days in Raleigh, but it was so good to spend some quality time with family and catch up with some old friends!

We had also just found out about baby #2 a couple weeks before, so we decided to tell my side of the family in person while we were there.  Or, to be more precise, we decided to let Joshua make the announcement:

You can't exactly tell from this photo, but his shirt says "BIG BROTHER."  :)  And yes, he has his beloved fire truck and yellow truck in his hands -- we wouldn't dream of going anywhere for any length of time without his two favorite trucks!

Joshua better understood the whole concept of gift-giving this year.  He had a lot of fun toddling around and handing presents to people, and he really loved tearing into the wrapping paper on his own gifts! 

Oh, and my parents loved the finger painting Joshua created for them!  (First mentioned here.)

And Joshua really enjoyed playing with his grandparents and uncles.  It was so much fun watching him roughhouse with the guys, and then exploring my parents' rambling backyard and working up the courage to say hi to the dogs...

Funny story about the dogs -- they love hanging out on the back deck when people are in the kitchen, hoping that someone will come out and bring them some of whatever it is we're eating.  Joshua noticed the dogs just outside the window, and ran over to stare back at them.  He first pointed to Pretty, the slightly smaller girl dog (in the last image above), and yelled "Puppy!!"  And then he saw Puggy, Pretty's full-grown brother, and with wide eyes, shouted "BEAR!!!!"

Later in the weekend, we went up to North Raleigh to meet up with two of my old high school friends!  Sara invited us over to her lovely home for dinner, and Vinney, who's been traveling the world lately doing all manner of interesting work, was in town and finally got to meet Joshua!  And Joshua got to play with another puppy.  :)

In that last shot, Vinney is reading Joshua one of his favorites, "Goodnight Moon," and they just made it to the "quiet old lady whispering hush" page.  :)

We really had a wonderful Christmas, and we're looking forward to the next time we can make it back to Raleigh for a visit!