big c's version of the holidays

I will start way back before Christmas. Pre-Christmas was kinda hectic. Although we did put up lots of House lights and a tree, it still didn't feel like much of a Christmas season. Claire and I were to busy running around trying to prepare gifts, travel plans, dog arrangements, work, and just keep our day to day lives in one piece. On my end it was mostly work and be discouraged that my computer was on the fritz and about to die. Beyond work, I did a lot of cooking.

But since Claire did most of Christmas I will briefly touch on my week alone in Austin and then update you on Amarillo.

While Claire worked, socialized, and visited family in Tyler. I was stuck in Austin pretty much just working. I did celebrate New Years Eve with our good friends Charlie and Emily. Thanks guys for inviting me! Mostly I just played Civilization IV which Claire got me for Christmas. Deep down I am still a nerd. Oh well, I enjoyed my time alone but was very ready for a vacation. Once Friday the 2nd hit I was off to Tyler with Freddie and Brewster in tow.

We were finally off to Amarillo for Vacation after that! I hadn't really had a chance to visit with family for over a year. So the plan was to make it as laid back and relaxing as possible, and it was. We did Christmas with my parents when we got there.

I got a sweet magnetic picker upper thingy and Claire got a little baggy to hold stuff in her purse among other great gifts.

That night we headed over to visit my great friends John and Lacey. Although their dog Darla stole the show after her bath.

The next day we finally went to Malcom's. Claire had been begging me to take her there and so Mom joined us

and we had lunch and sundays. Ours was butterscotch. It ended up being a little to butterscothy?! Good non-the-less.

We met up again at the Eslers that night to play some board games (munchkin) and catch up.

During the days Claire worked at Roasters and enjoyed some good coffee, while I caught up on my reading. On the 6th Claire and I celebrated our style.

We had a big meal out with my parents, John and Lacey, and Will and Anna. Off course, if you know us, you know we had to have Mexican food. So we went to Leals. It was delicious, of course. It was also a great way to celebrate two years of Marriage. We topped the night off with more board games at the Eslers. You may start to see a pattern here.

The next day we shopped out at the mall, made friends with a stray,

worked crossword puzzles, bummed around and ended up playing more Board Games.

All the days kind of blend together when you are recalling memories. At some point we went and saw Seven Pounds. I thought it was incredibly slow and boring. Claire was intreguied. We made our way over to the Water Still for some great flavored Ice Teas. We also played around with Scott's fancy lens for his Canon. We pretended we were models. Which Claire could be.

And I could not.

Mostly we ate a lot of food. Hung out every night at/with John and Lacey. Played games, had great conversation and even made some new friends! It was great to see Nick, Will, Anna, John, and Lacey all again and even got to hang out with some of their Amarillo friends, Thomas and Colleen.
On Friday we got up and drove back to Tyler to retrieve our dogs from Luci's care. Which of course while we were away Freddie thought it would be a good idea to eat a Tennis Ball, puke all over the room he was sleeping in and be a general nuisance for Luci. Thanks for keeping the pups though! Before leaving on Saturday to come back to Austin we played a little WII with Elbert. I also discovered not to mess with Claire because she was knocking people out in like 10 seconds flat on WII boxing. The pups enjoyed a smooth ride home

and we finally are home for a while. I bought a new computer on Saturday when we got back from Dell. Merry Christmas to me!

As for 2009, I expect a good year. Yes, Yes..the economy is bad, bad news, bad news, bad news. Thats all I hear. But after two years of marriage God hasn't failed us yet. In fact he has only blessed us so I expect good things in the future. Some things I know are coming and some goals I have set for myself and Claire:

Welcome in a bunch of Babies (Esler's, Rajeh's, Gooch's, and the Carroll's).
Get some new CD's from some of our favorite bands
Have a good time at SXSW
Plan the next set of Holidays way in Advance
Read a lot of books
Accomplish more of our summer goals
Blog a lot more
Practice my photography more
Clean out the Garage
Take a vacation (Most likely to San Francisco)
Redo our Back Yard
Possibly start a Garden
Put in Lights for the House
Write a lot more restaurant Reviews

And continue to bless and be blessed by others whether through prayer, conversation, online chats, blogs, phone calls, texts, emails, or just by word of mouth. I hope that everyone has something great to look forward to this year because I know Claire and I do. When I stop to look back on it I can truly see how blessed we are.


Claire said...

You could TOO be a model. Don't you remember what that lady told you?!?!
Maybe you just needed me to edit the shot for you to be able to see that (yeah, I cheated - uploaded my version. Lol.) memories. You forgot about the excellent band at hastings, sushi, pizza, a lot of stuff. Lol. Oh well. It was still fun to reminisce!

Sara said...

Those are beautiful pictures of Claire!

San Francisco is one of my all time favorite places - I'd go there once a year if I could.

Claire said...

@Sara- Chance didn't exactly pick the best photos of oh well. I'm not exactly the most photogenic person. The leaf photo makes me look old. Lol...all my eye wrinkles. Lol. At least he's a good photographer though. (:

I've only been in SanFran to go to the airport. Lol. It should be a fun trip if we get to go!

Cliff and Jessica said...

Hi Claire! It's Jessica, Cliff's wife. Thanks for posting on our blog. Cliff will be excited that you found it. I was so glad to hear that I'm not the only one lugging around "junk" to do something with some day. I'm about halfway done with my I've just got to finish! :)

It has been really easy so far! I got my sewing machine for Christmas, but you can get a good starter one for like $75-100 at Wal-Mart. If you're anything like me you won't need more than that one has to offer. I'm just in it for the basics. :) Good luck!

Elizabeth said...

Hey, James got one (actually 2) of those magnet stick thingies too! Funny....
Happy Anniversary too!!!

Juliee said...

enjoyed reading both of your Christmas blogs - you are gifted writers! Wish I could have seen you over the holidays- hopefully some day soon. I send belated Merry Christmas and Happy Anniversary wishes (can it possibly have been 2 years ago???) and best wishes for a new year filled with all the blessings that you both deserve!
Juliee Denman

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