Christmas Happened

Christmas is done and I’m exhausted.  This year, we had three Christmases, so it was extra exhausting.  Here’s the breakdown:

Christmas #1

Christmas eve, we planned to spend the day low-key at the apartment and then go to my parents house around 5 to do dinner and gifts, but our plan changed because Chris’ mom got really sick.  We were at the dog park when she called saying she needed help, so we were off to Chantilly to see how we could contribute.  Once we got there, we realized just how bad a shape his mom was in, so we ended up making the entire Christmas dinner (except the turkey which dad cooked on Christmas day) that morning/afternoon.  I was really proud of Chris and myself for rolling up our sleeves and working so well as a team – we weren’t prepared to make a full on meal, and neither of us had done it, but we were successful and I’m just really proud of all that we accomplished. 

After we left Chantilly, we went back home to get ready, picked up Ledo’s pizza and got to my parents right at 5 o’clock.  While we were eating dinner, I was telling Chris how every year we get new pajamas to sleep in on Christmas Eve, but he understood that as we put them on prior to opening gifts.  I looked at him like a crazy person and asked why we would do that, and we all laughed at the idea because it’s not what we do.  However, the more we laughed about it, the more it made sense, so after dinner, we jumped into our pj’s and tore into the presents.

Dad and Chris in their new pajamas.
Mom and me in pjs.
Dad and me doing stockings.
The stockings threw up.
Chris opening his Diesel watch.
New Kindle!!
Dad opening his handmade bowl created and signed by Chris Cooley.
Chris modeling his new peacoat.
Ready for the Winter Classic.

After we opened gifts, we did our annual tradition of playing board games.  We started with Scattegories, but some people (dad) got too competitive, so we switched to Pictionary instead which was a huge hit and we played for 2 hours.   Here are just a few of our hilarious drawings:

“Spinning, “Cremated,” “Hungry” and “Harbor.”
Chris’ interpretation of “Divorce.” Flat out hysterical.
We won round 1 and we were really excited about it.
Christmas at the Browns is done!

Christmas #2

On Christmas morning, we were up early and were at Chris’ parents house by 9am.  Chris’ mom was feeling worse, so we did gifts quickly so she could rest up a little before the guests arrived. 

Goodman tree and gifts.
Chris’ dad opening his first gift.
Keurig coffee maker!!!!!!!!!!
Chris behind a very large gift.
Signed and framed Ovechkin jersey.
Natalie & Chris at the Goodman Christmas.

After presents, we were back in the kitchen cooking for 2 hours before the guests arrived.  Luckily we had done the prep work on Christmas eve, so we mostly had to re-warm dishes while Chris’ dad worked on the turkey.  But setting up the tables, setting out the actual dishware, cooking and making sure everything was done was exhausting!  I never realized how much work went into putting on a big dinner. 

Chris’ dad focused on the turkey.
Me, proud of the spread we created.

We stayed at the Goodman’s until about 2 o’clock and then we had to run home real quick, let the dog out, drop off gifts, and then finish the night with Christmas number three. 

Christmas #3

My parents picked us up at the apartment after we dropped our stuff off and let Hunter out and we headed to Leesburg to my aunts house for my moms side of the families Christmas.  They drove because we wanted to drink.  Ha, we were exhausted, what can I say?

My aunt always puts on a nice spread and has every little detail covered, and this year was no exception.  It was great to have everyone (except my uncle mike who is in Afgahnistan) together for the first time in a long time.  One of Uncle Mike’s soldiers from Afghanistan also spent Christmas with us, so that was super awesome as well.  We’ve been facebook friends for quite a while now, and it was great to finally meet in person.  All in all, it was a great night, but I was wiped out by 8pm.

Chris started off the night with a mango/peach margarita. Who knew that was Christmas appropriate? Hehe.
The bar…
Pretty dinner setup.
I love small details like placecards.
Tracy, the wine expert.
Playing Balderdash.
Prime Rib dinner.

We got home from all of the festivities at about 10pm and I literally fell into bed and don’t even remember my head hitting the pillow.  Our Christmas was exhausting but wonderful and I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

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