#725 3 Christmases.

For 2 people with no divorced parents, we’ve sure had a whole lot of Christmases today! We started off with Christmas #1 gift opening at Ben’s parents. Our niece and nephew, Jared and Ellie, played Santa and passed out the gifts:

We gave Ben’s parents a weekend getaway in Laurel with gift certificates to our favorite restaurants since they’ve never really visited us for more than an hour or two. I hope they’ll cash it in as soon as the new house is ready!

They gave me a beautiful handmade platter. It nearly matches the one I made for us in my college pottery class. It’s just perfect!

Mit got an air compressor! And stretchy blue work gloves!

The Rev got a fruitcake!

Jedge got a model car!

And the Esquire Handbook of Style (cause Ben’s a huge fan, he’s making it his mission to give it to every young man he knows):

Then we made the trip back home to Laurel so Ben and I could exchange our gifts for Christmas #2 of the day.

An iPod since his other one died!

He gave me a flannel nightgown from J.Crew, a pair of wool tights, books about the history of Wakulla Springs and Henry Flagler, and a brand new pair of red wellies! And then… I opened my most favorite gift of all.

He gave me Stockbridge!

Since our roadtrip across Massachusetts back in November, we’ve both been dreaming of Stockbridge, our favorite town of all where we stayed at the Red Lion Inn. We fell completely in love with the little town that was famous for being Norman Rockwell’s hometown in his golden years. It took him 10 years to complete this beautiful painting of the tiny town and now it will hang in our house.

But even better is that I opened the next box and it was a Christmas village of Stockbridge—exactly replicating Rockwell’s painting. How sweet is that?!

I saved Ben’s big gift for last. He was clueless.

The card I wrote him read “Hi love! Happy Christmas! You know how the saying goes, “you ain’t no kind of man if you ain’t got land?” Well as a now home-owning man, I figure you need this. Clint would be proud, Mr. Ben. I love you!”

“What IS this, Bit?”

“I have no idea what this is.”

“Oh… Oh… What… How did you GET this?!”

We hurried and got ready so we could head out to the county for Christmas #3 where he, Daddy, Jim and Clark could shoot their guns. Cause it’s Christmas! Our crazy pup has been staying there for 2 nights and he’s given up the sheltered life of a city dog to stay out in the rain and roll in mud. We could NOT get him to get out of the rain. Suits him, it suits me!

But then, they started firing their guns.

Chevy’s never heard a gun before. He wasn’t a fan. This is as close as he would get to us.

Gotta believe to receive.

Then they let Mal and I give it a go!

Turns out I’m not a bad shot. I hit the target (a coke can 30 yards away) a few times!

And check out Mal’s new ride! Best Christmas present ever since she’s been wanting one REALLY bad for a long while now:

Then we came inside to try and be useful. But just nibbled and waited on the boys instead.

Mammaw’s Whitman’s chocolates. Ben and I give them to her for every special occasion. My grandfather always did, and I couldn’t stand the thought of her losing that special treat when he passed away in 2001. She acts surprised every. Single. Time.

Good food, good meat, good God let’s eat!

Me and Bub:

Family portrait take 1:

The money shot:

We just finished watching Midnight in Paris and now I am really dying to go there. It’s such an amazing movie—especially if you’ve studied any about the expatriates who moved to Paris in the 1920s and/or like Owen Wilson. Perfect way to end Christmas night.

Sleep tight, sweet readers!