TC and I have been back in Canada for several days now and I'm still recovering from all the fun we had in Atlanta.
As usual, my parents put on a fabulous Christmas.
Shortly after landing on Christmas Eve we got dressed up and headed to church. We then came home and my dad got to work on our traditional pomegranate martinis.
For dinner my mom ordered steaks from my grandpa's favorite butcher in Iowa. Grandpa's not with us anymore but when he was alive he never missed a Christmas at our house. He would have loved it.
The next morning we slept in since my sister, TC and I stayed out late having drinks and catching up. When we woke up it was presents galore. Thanks to my parent's recent trip to Paris we all were gifted fabulous French treasures.
This year I got creative and had a special gift made for TC. I searched high and low before finding a wonderful woodworker on Etsy who was willing to create a custom toy version of TC's Land Rover. I was beside myself with excitement about it and I think it is safe to say that TC loves it.
For Christmas dinner we headed over to my parent's best friend's house. Dotty set a beautiful table, complete with mercury glass ornaments for each of us.
Jim carved the turkey to perfection while entertaining all of us with his outrageous stories. The running joke is that the advent of the iPhone has ruined Jim's stories because now we can catch him in his exaggerations. Lucky for Jim, we all put our phones away for the evening and let him tell his stories in all their exaggerated glory.
For the second year we all popped our poppers and donned colorful crowns for dinner. It's a new tradition for us, but I think it sets a really fun atmosphere for dinner. Which, by the way, is perfect for this crew.
The next night my parents shipped us kids off to see Cirque du Soleil's Totem. It was my first Cirque experience and it was amazing. We must have asked TC to pronounce Cirque du Soleil with the proper French accent a million times. It sounds so much more elegant when he says it.
The next evening we all headed back downtown for a trip to see the lights at the Botanical Gardens.
My family has lived in Atlanta for 20 years and somehow this was the first time we visited. I sense another new tradition in the making...
To keep ourselves entertained in the afternoons we did some light shopping. For cowboy boots. Obviously.
I'm not sure what prompted the trip to Horsetown, but don't you think TC looks pretty fancy in these boots? We probably should have bought him a pair in every color.
There's a great beer brewery in Atlanta called Sweetwater that is a personal favorite of mine. For one of our last nights in town we went down for a tour with my best friend Sally and her husband. I use the term "tour" very lightly, because it was 15 minutes of tour and two hours of taste testing all the delicious brews.
Afterward, the four of us headed to a cute downtown area for dinner. It's a part of town that has recently blown up with great bars and restaurants but hasn't lost any of it's old Southern charm.
The wait wasn't too long so we huddled up with sangria to keep us warm while we hung out and waited for our table.
Let me tell you, the shrimp tacos were worth the wait.
I can't tell you how much fun I had hanging out with my friends and seeing all of those faces that I miss so much.
My parents are the absolute best. Once again, they gave us a magical Christmas and I can't wait to see them again in May. I'm already counting down the days.