Merry Christmas!

I'm having a hard time believing Christmas has already come and gone this year. Also, where did ALL of December go? I feel like we were just celebrating Taylor's birthday last week. I'm not sure why, but getting into the Christmas spirit was hard in Del Rio. The temperatures only dropped below 60 during the last week of school and we were all so busy that we didn't have time to do anything holiday related. Of course Taylor and Conor's year-round Christmas tree in their living room helped a little.

I flew home to my parents house on the 17th and jumped right into shopping. It's so much more fun when your options go beyond Wal-mart! Kirsten and I also started the week off right with massages and pedicures. Definitely what I needed after a stressful semester of teaching! I once again went with sparkles on my toes. I chose the big sparkles this time though and may have overestimated my commitment to the sparkle. They were so big that I actually had to peel a couple of them off of my pinky toenails after they had turned into razor blades.

The week leading up to Christmas flew by faster than ever before because of all the running around we did. We packed in grandparents visits, more shopping, lots of sleeping in (LOTS), and even some baking.

I made some oreo-peppermint truffles for the first time. Actually, it was my first truffle ever to make. I wasn't a huge fan of the result, but they were a big hit at our family Christmas so I'll go with success. I thought they were a little heavy on the peppermint and lacking in other areas that I couldn't pinpoint. Also, I am not good at eyeballing 1-inch sized truffles so they ended up rather large and more difficult to eat. I almost destroyed a mixer and a food processor during the process. It turns out that you can't crush an entire package of oreos at once. Or add cream cheese to them afterwards. My bad. Aiding in the almost disaster was my little brother. I specifically bought a package of oreos for my truffles and set them aside with all the other ingredients I was going to use. They were on the counter for maybe 12 hours, max. Somehow Jesse managed to eat all but 3 oreos in that time period. How can someone eat that many cookies in such a short amount of time? Luckily we had a spare package in the pantry that he had not managed to track down. He has a problem.

We had a really good Christmas at our house this year. Especially my parents. I'm no longer a poor college student and can afford to do things like bring them into the latest century of electronics. I bought them an Apple TV which will allow Dad to play his Angry Birds from the iPad so everyone can watch him dominate those birds. (his words, not mine) We'll see how often it's used, but I think they will enjoy it once they figure it out. They also got a blu-ray player. Not because they wanted better quality movies from their new tv, but because Dad was tired of switching cables out to watch a movie on their old DVD player. I wish I was joking.

Jesse and I also had fantastic Christmases. He got some sort of gun and then stopped opening presents so I guess he likes it. I don't know what 18 year old little brothers want so I gifted him with an IOU "one of anything you want". He picked a knife of some sort. Awesome. I was hoping for a new pair of jeans or something. His second favorite gift was a lighter shaped like a gun. As if he wasn't enough of a pyromaniac already, he now has the ability to shoot fire at candles. Thanks mom!

I think Mom and Dad are having a hard time with me getting married next year so they went a little overboard on the gifts. I'm going to roll out of here with a new suitcase filled with presents instead of clothes. I've been drooling over my new camera as well. I love it more than I love candy. Dad told me that it counts for Christmas/Birthday/Wedding, and I'm perfectly ok with that!

I'm off today to spend New Year's in Lubbock with Taylor and his family and I can't wait! I'm just so sad that the break is flying by so fast. It will be time to head back to work before I know it. I'm hoping to keep relaxing and enjoy these last few days with my family-to-be!

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