Thursday, January 17, 2013

Christmas Vacation (Part 2)

The second week of our vacation began with all the Reimers girls going out for breakfast together. My mom, Grandma, and aunts celebrate each others birthdays with breakfasts throughout the year. My aunts both have birthdays in December, and since my sister and cousins are out of school and work at that point, we all get to join them. I left Avery at home with my dad so she could get a good morning nap. We had the best time together!

Our Christmas Eve service at church was actually on the Sunday night before Christmas. This special time with our church family includes members singing or playing Christmas selections or giving a reading. As far back as I can remember, the Reimers cousins have always sung a song during this service. Last year, we convinced my parents and Aunt Laura & Uncle Jay to join us. And this year we decided to continue the same tradition. We had even more people this year with Halle and Avery. They both did very well, although Avery thought it would be fun to touch my lips while I tried to sing.

Christmas morning began as usual with my grandparents coming over for breakfast. I love this picture of my Dad teaching Avery about the Pyramidenkerzen he bought in Germany.

Avery slept through breakfast and gift-opening, but we saved her gifts for when she woke up. I'm sure she didn't understand what she was doing, but she loved ripping the paper off the boxes and playing with all her new toys. She certainly was spoiled by her sweet family. Come to think of it, I don't think Ryan and I even bought her anything!

We loved our first Christmas with Avery! After we cleaned up from our family gift exchange, we started preparing for all the family to arrive in just a couple hours. The cousins all exchange names, and the adults exchange names among themselves, and we have the best time discovering who had who's name and opening gifts together.

A couple days after Christmas, Ryan, Rebekah, Avery, and I headed up to the outlets near our house for a little shopping. On the way home, Ryan started to feel a little sick. As the day progressed, he realized he was coming down with the flu. It was not a fun couple days for him, but fortunately it was just a stomach bug and didn't last as long as the influenza virus that is going around. He rested for a few days, and our family enjoyed a Lord of the Rings marathon for a few nights.

Although it turned out to be a quieter vacation than we had planned, we are so thankful for so much time with family and friends. And it was a blessing that Ryan's injury and illness occurred during his break and not during rotations.

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