Ok, so I didn't quite make my goal of finishing the Christmas posts before our weekend in Little Cayman, but I'm not too far off! We've been super busy since returning to island on January 3rd. I've started volunteering as the nursery director at our church which involves scheduling our once-a-month volunteers and organizing the curriculum. Brent and I have continued volunteering with the "adopt-a-school" outreach at George Town Primary. We both really enjoy spending time with those kiddos one night a week, and I'm always amazed that they remember our names and rush to hug us each visit. In addition, business has been booming for KruBooks - I received 11 album orders in the first 11 days of the year! All of this made me very excited for a relaxing long weekend in Little Cayman. And it really was everything I hoped for and more. But I'll save that post for another time...first, our Christmas in Greenville, SC!
We arrived in Greenville late on December 23rd, so our first full day was Christmas Eve. We spent most of the day at Lorren and Cole's house. Cole made an amazing fried turkey for dinner. I'm glad we got to spend some time with the Varner four before they become the Varner FIVE!
Trying out Christmas presents after the kids go to bed :)
We woke up early on Christmas morning so we could be at the Varners before the girls woke up. I love being with kids on Christmas morning...it brings back such great memories. The thrill of coming downstairs and seeing all the presents around the tree, the tradition of reading the Christmas story together, the anticipation as you pass out presents to your siblings. I can't believe I'm now one of the adults sitting back with my mug and smiling serenely at the whole scene. When did I get so grown up?
We headed back to Brent's parents' house in the afternoon and met up with the Turners there. More presents, of course!
After opening presents, we took a little walk around the neighborhood. We stayed in our pajamas and pulled coats on top. I've never done a "Christmas walk" before, but it was a really nice to get out of the house a bit and enjoy some fresh air. A perfect segue between presents and dinner.
Note the guys all wearing their new Bojangles camouflage hats. If that's not southern, I don't know what is.
Another favorite from this trip was the night we stayed in, made popcorn and snuggled up for some family movie time.
The kids weren't the only ones captivated by Rio...
We enjoyed very mild winter weather in both Cincinnati and Greenville. No snow this year! One afternoon we took a walk in the park downtown. The scene was so perfect, we couldn't pass up the chance for some impromptu family pictures.
The Bengals were trying to claim their spot in the playoffs the Sunday before we left. Brent's family was so nice to join us as we cheered on our team. They even wore orange and black! Now that's love :)
Loosing the game was a little less sad when surrounded by family. And thanks to some other teams loosing, we still made it to the playoffs (but only the first round...oh well, there's always next year!).
All and all, it was a wonderful visit to the States. It was our longest trip yet, which allowed me to fully enjoy our time there, but also made me more ready to return to Grand Cayman and get back to "regular life." Really, how can you be sad flying back to a view like this?