Silas turned 3! We celebrated with a family party and a trip to the zoo. He was a happy boy.
My Mom and brother Steven visited for Thanksgiving. We braved Washington D.C. and Annapolis in verrrrry coooold walking weather, and cooked a lot of comfort food. This was one of my favorite Thanksgivings so far: the boys were up early rolling out pie dough with Ricky and me, and that set the stage for a peaceful day of cooking. We even had time to walk by the lake while the turkey roasted.
My brother Luke came home from Italy and stopped by our place for a few days. He was all traveled out, so we enjoyed a lot of cozy at-home time. He brought really good wine, and we made good food to go with it. We did venture out to see The Hobbit 2 in Imax 3-D, which very much exceeded my expectations visually. Luke, being one of those people who actually read the book, of course had some qualms about the adaptation.
Ricky's family came for Christmas (we started a new tradition a few years ago of alternating cities, and this was our turn) and we rented a big house in Annapolis so we could all stay together. It had an enormous kitchen, a fireplace, huge windows, and many other fun details--the boys' favorite being the electric fireplace in their room.
The grandparents stayed a few extra days, and we ventured out to see the big tree in D.C., and took Nicky ice skating at the National Sculpture Garden. It's one of my favorite spots in the city: Nicky used to take naps there when he was a toddler and we lived here for a summer, and it has an enormous fountain that doubles as a skating rink in the winter.
Ricky and I even got to take a little getaway to Philadelphia, which was truly special. We saw the Pennsylvania Ballet Company perform The Nutcracker on its final night, and visited the touristy things like Independence Hall, the "Rocky steps" at the Philadelphia Art Museum, and the Eastern State Penitentiary. And of course we sampled some cheesesteaks.
We made it back home for a quiet New Year's Eve with good food and drink, and one last night with Abuela and Yoko (there's a story behind the name; let's just say Nicky couldn't quite say Abuelo when he was little) and a farewell to them on New Year's Day.
Whoosh! We're tired but happy, and right now enjoying a big-for-us snowfall from last night. I may wrap my head around a routine again sometime soon. I hope your holidays were lovely; I don't think ours have ever been this jam-packed before! We were rich in visitors, which is really quite special when you've moved thousands of miles and don't see family too often.
On to 2014!