What a wonderful Christmas it was for us this year!! To describe it in one simple phrase — sweet, sweet time with family. We drove up to Merrill, Wisconsin (Caleb’s hometown) on Christmas Eve Eve (yes, I typed that right!!), + spent two days at Caleb’s Grandma Shirley’s house : ) I cherish time in this home SO much because it is slow-paced + full of good conversation, competitive board games, + pot after pot of freshly-made coffee (always half regular, half decaf). I also cannot ever seem to get over the way Caleb’s Grandma loves her grandchildren … it is truly palpable + so, so beautiful. There are always lots of hugs at Grandma Shirley’s house … and definitely tears when it comes time for goodbyes.
On Christmas Eve night we drove to Waupaca (my hometown), which is just about an hour + fifteen minutes east of Merrill. The second “big” snowfall of the year had just come down + we were one of the few cars on the quiet Wisconsin highway amongst a true winter wonderland : ) Christmas Day was spent with my family + my godparents + cousins. It was a wonderful time together as we reminisced on past family memories, shared a delicious meal together, + took turns trying to plunk away at old Christmas carols on the piano. My grandma on my dad’s side has Stage 4 Alzheimers + our trip to visit her was very special + also emotional. We sat in a circle at the nursing home together as my grandpa held Grandma’s hand so gently + my uncle shared stories from Christmases growing up as kids in my grandpa + grandma’s home. Although on the outside it seemed like she was barely even there, I just know she felt our presence that afternoon, for the way she held grandpa’s hand back was, to me, a small indicator that she felt us + she felt safe <3
We made our way back to Madison Christmas night + I couldn’t help but feel so thankful for the time we had with each of our families to do nothing but just be. Presence, not presents, they say. I’ll take the former ANY day.
Welcome to Grandma Shirley’s … coffee, board games (this year we got Ticket To Ride!! SO FUN!) + dogs. Dogs take precedence, always.
It FINALLY snowed on Christmas Eve!! SO perfect!! And so pretty : )
At my parent’s house, dogs take precedence too ; ) Must run in the family!!