Even though I neglected the last few months, I couldn't let 2016 come to an end without the annual Christmas blog update. Our celebrations were back on track this year by spending Christmas Eve with Mark's family.
It all started innocently, with my sweet nephew Jacob watching Uncle Mark's potato chip ride the Polar Express.
But then...tragedy struck!
Thankfully, through the divine power of Tom Brady, my brother-in-law was miraculously saved from the speeding train.
Which was great because otherwise he wouldn't been able to give us these fabulous gifts.
Rowdy Roddy Piper Bubblegum soda and Judge Wapner Root Beer.
The gift opening continued. Here's Grandma Pinky's pillow.
Grandpa Ross got the gift that keeps on giving - a giant bag of bird seed.
Our nephew Noah got over his shyness just in time for presents.
And after the horrific incident with the train and the potato chip, Jacob vowed to stick to goldfish crackers.
Christmas morning started peaceful with presents piled high under the tree.
Unfortunately, I couldn't hang my vintage glass ornaments on the white tree this year, for fear that Jinx would destroy them. This fear was not unfounded, as we've had to pull her out of the tree several times. Thankfully, Mark had a brilliant idea to use the stuffed Rudolph and the Misfit toys ornaments that I collected back in 1997 and that have been in storage since. I also added some toy themed ornaments that I found at Target. I really love how it turned out, and might just forego the glass ornaments next year as well.
Lauren was unwilling to participate in photos on Christmas Eve and Christmas morning, so all I have to offer are these sweet kitties laying peacefully together under the tree. That is until...
CHRISTMAS CAT FIGHT! CHRISTMAS CAT FIGHT!
Moving on to Christmas evening with my family. Thanks to Pappy, Lauren decides to make an appearance in Christmas 2016.
Aunt Phyllis and Uncle Craig gave us a generous gift of a helicopter tour around the city of Pittsburgh. Right after, I opened an umbrella in the house. I'll follow up on how that turned out.
This year, we gave Craig a practical gift - his own personalized Emergency Nap Kit.
He really did wake up that way.
Pappy and Grandma got a brand new Christmas tree this year, and since they enjoy bird watching, I gave them matching blue jay and cardinal ornaments for their tree.
Grandma was surprised by her puffer (or pupper as she was calling it) vest and her Amazon Dot. She said it was the best Christmas ever, but mainly because the Steelers beat the Ravens as we were opening presents.
Last, but not least, Aunt Phyllis received the best gift of Christmas - the Donald Trump Talking Pen!
You can see the pen in action here:
All in all, Christmas 2016 was as rich in blessings as President Elect Trump is...rich.