Tuesday, December 24, 2013

The Whole Fam Damily

Originally,  my mom was going to be the only one that was coming to visit us when the baby came. Then when the baby came early it look like my mom would be here over Christmas. That left the rest of my family at home alone to celebrate without my mom or I. They decided that wasn't much of a christmas and that they couldn't wait till February to meet little Eden. So after a little thought my dad decided that it was best if the whole family came out to visit for Christmas. And by whole family, I mean whole family, My grandparents, both brothers and both sisters hopped in the van on Saturday the 21st and started driving towards Connecticut.
We were fortunate enough to have a friend/family of ours out of town for the Christmas holiday. They kindly offered us their home so that my family would have a place to stay while they were visiting. It was the perfect situation as our small little apartment would not accommodated my eight family members comfortably for meals and activities.They arrived around 5 o'clock in the evening and my sisters were the first to come bounding through the front door. Katie whisked the baby out of my arms and what the first to hold her. There were tears shed on her part as she was so excited to finally meet her little niece Eden. After that my family played pass the baby around and everyone looked at her with aw and amazement.
Shortly after their arrival we headed to the home in Darien where they would be staying. I don't think the baby ever spent a minute in her bassinet or on a pillow as everyone in the family was anxious to take their turn holding her. We play games, ping-pong, watched movies, played piano and sang. It was a fantastic time for everyone sitting around making memories.

My family had been planning to head to the city on Monday. Originally Mike was planning to drive them down and play tour guide. I would stay home with my grandparents and the baby. After putting a little thought into the activities of the day my mom decided I would be the best tour guide for my family. She generously offered to stay home with Eden as I took the family into the city. I was sad to leave my little one but knew this time with my family was to be treasured and we would be making memories. I also knew that my baby was in good hands, if there was anyone I trusted Eden with it with my mom. We drove down to the city on Monday morning. Unfortunately the forecast called for rain all day long and it was right. We spent the day trudging through the streets and rain. Usually I'm a little more prepared for trips like these. I do research on different things to do and find out the best times to do them. After having a baby, the sleepless nights, and spending time with my family I didn't have a lot of time to research. I thought that we could head to the city and see some of the most popular attractions without too much interference from the crowds, especially because of the rain. I was wrong, dead wrong. Our first stop was Macy's. While the window displays outside were everything I had dreamed of I was not anticipating the long lines to go to Santa land. I had heard of Santa land and just assumed it was something that you could walk through and see for a little bit. I figured you had to wait in line to actually meet Santa but didn't think it would take very much time just to walk through the Santa land area I was again wrong as the line was 3 1/2 hours. Not to mention getting up-and-down Macy's in the elevator as crowded as the store was. It was a nightmare. I was happy and relieved when we finally exited the store. We walked up the street and looked at the lights and the Christmas decorations.
We stopped at Shake shack for lunch, that was a good choice. Everyone loved it! We even got lucky enough to scope out two tables right next to each other for us to sit and eat. Quite an accomplishment I believe. After Lunch we walked through time square. We stopped at Toys R Us, the time square visitor center where we wrote our wishes for 2014 on the confetti they would drop at midnight, and the M&M store.

Prior to going down to the city we had purchased vouchers for skating in Central Park. We knew it might rain but we figured even with a little bit of rain we would still be able to ice skate.  We headed down to Central Park to look for the ice skating rink. We got to the place where we were supposed to transfer out voucher for the actual ice-skating tickets. They told us that the voucher place was closed but that the ice-skating rink was open. We trudge through the park for a LONG time looking for the ice-skating rink... In the pouring rain. This was probably the low point of our trip. I was 12 days postpartum and walking around the city trying to play tourist and the activity we'd been most looking forward to was turning out to be a nightmare. Of course because it was raining so hard the ice skating rink was closed. Mike got on the phone for about 30 minutes and finally was able to get a refund for our activity and we headed out to the Plaza hotel to see the Christmas decorations. Then we went to FAO Schwartz to see the toys. We walked down fifth Avenue admiring the lights and Christmas Decor on our way to Rockefeller Plaza. We saw the tree and all the Christmas decorations in the plaza. It wasn't as crowded as I had expected it to be. Elizabeth was in desperate need of a cup of spiced apple something or other from Starbucks. We found one and enjoy the warmth of the building and the rested a bit. After we were done we headed over to the Gershwin theater where Wicked runs. We entered the lottery and waited for the names to be called. Now, if you don't know I have somewhat of good luck when it comes to the wicked lottery. I've already won several times so I was confident that my luck would continue for my sisters to be able to see the show. My family was a little doubtful though and weren't planning on winning the lottery. To their surprise I won the lottery for the fourth time and gave the tickets to my sisters, the only ones who hadn't seen the show. I needed to get back to the baby so my dad, Mike and I drove home. While my siblings stayed in the city. My brothers walked around  and enjoyed the sights while my sisters saw the show. When they show was over they all took the train back to town.

The next day was Christmas eve and a little different than our traditional day. Traditionally we spend Christmas Eve caroling to several people and delivering my moms homemade bread. This year that was not the case. Instead, I took them to the tree on Gods Acre in New Canaan and we joined with hundreds of other in singing Christmas carols by candlelight. After that we went caroling to the family i babysit for. We took Eden with us and showed of our favorite Christmas gift. We came home and my siblings got into their Christmas Eve pajamas. We watch the movie elf and enjoy each others company. Not a bad way to spend Christmas Eve.

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