Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Monday, December 29, 2014

God Bless Us, Every One

8:09 AM 0 Comments
Hellooooooo! I'm baaaaack! Whew, what a whirlwind month this has been! I know I have no excuses, as everyone has been bustling with the busy holidays, but I just found myself stretched in so many directions-in a great way! I have some exciting news to announce to you, but will wait for another day, I thought today, before December slips away from us for good, to do a recap on our Merry Christmas!

This was our first Christmas together as an engaged couple, and it was a little strange yet very cool to realize this is what our Christmases are going to look like for the next few years until we start our own family (eek!). Because Mike's family is Jewish, we had a big family Hanukkah celebration on December 20, so we spent Christmas with my family. Mike and I drove over to Castro Valley around noon on Christmas Eve, right as the fam was getting off work. Later that evening, we went up to my Great Aunt's house for a Crazy Christmas Extravaganza. This is when my mom's side of the family (and I mean, the WHOLE family) get together. There were aunts and uncles and cousins and more cousins and dogs running around, complete with a visit from Santa Claus! 

our first official christmas tree picture
cousin ronnie and courtney just got engaged! yay!!
the sears (and soon to be petrelleses!) annual christmas eve photo

i'm so lucky to have this handsome hunk for a brother
After completely stuffing ourselves silly with food and desserts, visiting with family and sitting on Santa's lap (seriously), we headed home to fulfill a Sears Family Tradition. For the past 15 years or so, my family watches Jingle All The Way (yes I know, just go with it) on Christmas Eve, and it is one of the highlights of our Christmas. We snuggle up in our PJ's, grab our hot cocoa and quote every line in the movie laugh our way through it. After we watched Arnold save the day, we headed off to bed to wait for Santa. 

cuddled up for our sears family tradition - with our little bubs

this is nick right towards the end of jingle all the way - the festivities were too much for him

Christmas Morning was so relaxing, we woke up, drank our coffee and opened up our stockings and gifts and laughed more than I can remember. It was so wonderful. It was so nice to share our Christmas traditions with Mike and my family has been so gracious to open up their lives and welcome Mike with open arms, and it was such a great first Christmas as a new family. The rest of the day, we hung out in our PJS (literally, I didn't change out of them all day), had brunch, had dinner, and stayed up late not wanting the day to end. 

yes, i am voluntarily marrying this man...

nick and melyssa worn out from all the love…and prime rib

It is so funny how traditions and holidays start to shift and change as you get older. As kids, I remember being so excited to wake up on Christmas morning to see what Santa left me and to open up all of the fun gifts you wait all year for. And as I've gotten older, I've realized that the things I look forward to aren't underneath the tree, but rather who is around it. My favorite part of the holidays is to just hang around and laugh with family and spend that time with them that is becoming more and more precious as the years go by. And I know that even these times will change in a couple of years when Mike and I start our family (God willing) and we will get to create new traditions as our own new family. 

I hope you had a wonderful holiday spent with your family, friends, and those who matter most to you, and that you were really able to revel in the true meaning of the season; the birth of the baby that would bring salvation to us all. So cheers to a wonderful 2014 holiday and cheers to all that is to come in 2015!! 

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