Yesterday afternoon was my family Christmas party! It was hosted by my brother, Tom and sister in law, Jen. The oldest (Granny. Age - none of your business) to the youngest (Isabella. Age - two going on ten!) enjoyed the day at my brother's new home.
Unfortunately, there were three people missing.
Poor Brian came down with some sort of stomach bug yesterday - his first EVER! He was feeling miserable...
...but was more upset that he would miss seeing all of his cousins. He was SO excited that he'd be seeing them at the party. And I may have hyped up the amount of snacks and cookies that were going to be there. That really hit him where it hurt.
So Brian was missing... Ed was missing... and, for the second year, we were all missing Pop.
Gavin and I wore coordinating blue outfits to bring some Pop with us - blue was his favorite color.
Gavin had a great time at the party - and loved all of the attention! His first stop was to investigate their tree and give it his version of a thumbs up - a big giggle.
Then he made the rounds - stopping to stand up in front of Granny and then Uncle Tom and Uncle Greg.
He was very social!
He loved spending time with his cousin, Isabella! They had a snack together...
...and watched a movie together. She even sang Christmas songs to him and he sat there and clapped along, causing everyone to shout, "Awwww!!!!"
I loved spending time with all of my beautiful nieces...
...and adorable nephews.
And after the cousins exchanged their polyannas, everyone stopped to send their love to Brian.
I also videotaped several of his aunts, uncles and cousins talking to him. He was over the moon this morning when I showed him these videos - laughing hysterically and asking me to play them over and over.
Gavin was really an angel. He showed off his walking skills several times and blew people away! And lots of people, including his Uncle Mike, took the time to talk to him which made him so happy.
He sat with me in the formal dining room at the adult table - and I think he knew that he got REALLY lucky. He smiled all the way through dinner.
Gavin and I really missed Brian and Ed, but we had such a wonderful time together. I just adore my family and I would have been so bummed if I had missed this party.
When I got home, Ed reported that Brian was fine after I left. He gave him small sips of gatorade throughout the day - and some pretzels - and he didn't have any incidents. I thought, "Hooray! We're in the clear!" This morning when he woke up, he was very clingy to me and asked me to hold "the bucket" close by. I kinda thought he was faking to get my attention. Until he threw up. Whoops! It was only once this morning - but we canceled our plans this evening to attend a Christmas party at our neighbors... just to be safe.
But - nothing could keep us away from our date with Santa at the top of our driveway. Every year our neighborhood lines the streets with paper lanters - or, luminaries - and we all wait for the arrival of Santa Claus on a firetruck!
The boys were so excited!!
The truck turned in on our street and we were the very first stop. Santa hopped out of the truck and exclaimed, "Brian!! Gavin!!" Ed and I wanted to cry, it was so sweet. Take a look...
Santa really made a wonderful impression and got all of us excited for Christmas eve tomorrow!
When we got inside - the boys were giddy and happy!
Brian was amazed that Santa called him by name!! Tonight, when I was getting him ready for bed, he said "I love Santa. And Santa loves me because I'm a good boy. And he loves Gavin because Gavin is a good boy. And Gavin loves Santa because he can walk now. Do you love Santa, Mommy?"
"More than ever," I replied. "He's given me everything I ever wanted."