Saturday, December 5, 2009

Christmas Caravan 2009

by Meghann on December 5, 2009

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I am so lucky to have such a large close knit family within driving distance and one that is so very rich in tradition.

Today was my family’s Annual Christmas Caravan. Each year we create a caravan and travel to each family member’s house where we eat their food and “ewww & awww” at their Christmas decorations.

Usually this festive activity occurs the weekend before Christmas, but due to conflicting schedules it just happened this weekend worked out best for everyone. Keep in mind we didn’t visit every house in the area, but we did get a good amount in and I feel I have officially reached my sweets limit for the month. ๐Ÿ˜‰

Lots of good food and lots of good photos to share!

This year’s caravan began at my cousin Mindy, her husband Woody and their son Travis’ house.

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I had been up since 6:30 for god knows what reason, but was planning on waiting until the caravan started to eat. Needless to say when I walked into my cousin’s house at 9:30 my stomach was growling pretty loudly.

Luckily Mindy had put out a lovely display of great eats.

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I made a small plate with a little bit of everything: fresh berries, a sausage ball, a sliver of Spinach quiche, and blueberry cake.

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Mindy and Woody have a pool table in their back room that all my baby cousin’s found fascinating.

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No need to waste gas – the next stop is only a hay ride away. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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Can you seriously get any cuter than this?

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And around and around they go!

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My Aunt Carol and Uncle Bob were next!

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Their kitchen was FULL of traditional goodies.

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Wheat Thins with Salsa/ Cream Cheese Dip

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Pepperoni Bread (I had 1/2 a slice)

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Split Pea Soup

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It was a little thin for my taste (I like split pea soup extra thick) so I only had 1/2 of my 1/2 filled mug.

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And OF COURSE there were Congo Bars! ๐Ÿ™‚

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I had one.

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It was beginning to rain as we walked to the cars and I couldn’t resist snapping a photo of my two baby cousins sharing an umbrella.

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Riley and Genieve are about the same distance in age as my sister and I. Having spent the majority of the day with them I can already see the same relationship I have with my sister blossoming between the two of them. I hope they realize how lucky they are to have each other. ๐Ÿ™‚

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Yes, they are biting their toe nails. Apparently its a hidden talent? ๐Ÿ˜‰

After a 45 minute drive we arrived at the next stop: My cousin Bobby, his wife Candice and their daughter Abbygail’s house.

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I grabbed a cup of fruit filled punch

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And filled my napkin was a samosa, pig in a blanket, and a cream puff.

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I could have spent all day taking pictures of these girls.

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Abbygail

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Riley

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Don’t worry – we’re halfway through!

Riley and Genieve’s House was up next!

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They had plenty of Chili to share with everyone.

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My cousin’s husband fries up his own tortilla strips to crumble on top.

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My bowl

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I’m not going to lie, I was getting pretty full by this point.

Luckily my cousin Jay and his wife Katrine’s house was short and sweet. ๐Ÿ™‚

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I was happy to see fruit on the table. I had a big help with 1/2 a cookie and a mini ice cream bar.

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My Uncle Bill’s house rounded out the caravan.

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(somehow I missed a shot of him in front of the tree ๐Ÿ™ )

Per tradition the final stop is where we celebrate December birthdays.

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I had one of the mini cupcakes up front. My Uncle made all the cupcakes and icing from scratch, but I was just too full of sweets at this point to enjoy anything else.

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Happy Birthday Abbygail, Bobby, Angel, and Riley!

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Nom Nom Nom

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Present time!!!

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Sorry Maddie, but I think I may have found my new favorite photo subjects. My cousin’s little girls rock. Angel – I am willing to baby sit anytime! ๐Ÿ˜‰

Can you believe I took over 400 photos today?!?! I didn’t even post all of the ones I really liked, that post would have been far too long. Thanks for hanging with me on this one.

We wrapped up the caravan around 4:00 and around 7:00 I put together a fairly light dinner of Roasted Veggies and Marinara Sauce topped with Raisins and Almonds.

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I wasn’t terribly hungry, but knew I had to eat something if I was planning on running 18 miles tomorrow morning!

Check out my morning schedule:

  • 5:00 am – Wake Up
  • 5:50 am – Meet Orlando Running Group and run 18 miles
  • 9:45 am (ish) – Come home, eat, shower and load car
  • 10:30 am – head to Caitlin’s
  • 11:00 am – head to airport
  • 12:50 pm – Flight takes off for St. Louis

Can I do it?!?!?! We shall see!!!!

Good Night!!!

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Baking Cookies

December 5, 2009

Tonight Caitlin and I had these great festive plans to watch It’s a Wonderful Life at the free outdoor theater. We were going to pack a picnic and sit under the stars. Unfortunately the torrential downpour and below average temps quickly destroyed those plans. Bummer. ๐Ÿ™ After much deliberation we decided to stay in and more ยป

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