Thursday, December 29, 2011

It's a wonderful life...

This year for Christmas, it was time to celebrate with the Durgin side of the family. Chaz and I boarded a plane Wednesday morning, and were in Reno by 1pm! It's so nice getting two extra hours!

We arrived to excited family members, and Chaz was like a kid in a candy store! He loves family time, which is why I love him!

Wednesday was a bit of eating, shopping, relaxing and playing games. And in Durgin tradition, everyone takes a go at cleaning up after dinner...Chaz and Laine tag teamed it the first night. What cute siblings! The mood was greatly heightened by this lovely little number being lit up each evening.
Thursday has us decorating a ginger bread house and putting together a puzzle. It was a great morning of relaxing and doing little projects together. Chaz had way too much fun decorating the ginger bread house. He showed his mad skills by adding icicles and other fancy adornments.
The rest of us just watched! I did however make that great looking wreath! Thank you to the lady at Michael's craft store who I watched while D. Lo shopped one day...your presentation paid off!
Friday Laine, Terri, Chaz, Ginny, Chaz's grandma, and I drove up into the mountains. We stopped in Incline Village, where Chaz's grandparents used to live, and then continued on to the Ritz to get pedicures. Of course Chaz passed on a pedicure so he headed back to Incline to do some shopping and take some great pics!
The Ritz was lovely, and after our amazing pedicures, Chaz joined us again and we had lunch in their main lobby. Great food, great drinks, and lovely views.

That night Laine took Chaz and I downtown Reno. We went to a basketball game and then hit up some bars and Casino's downtown. Way different then going out in Mpls. A different vibe with the Casino's and the night owl atmosphere but we had a good time just walking around, taking pictures, and eating way to much food! (Maybe the eating too much food was just me but boy was I full!)

Christmas Eve day we woke up and I made caramel rolls that my family has made for years on Christmas eve. We finished wrapping and shopping, and Chaz's aunt joined us from LA early afternoon.

That evening we enjoyed the traditional Durgin fondue. It was a lovely meal complete with a chocolate creme brule dessert (so fricken good!)

We also get Santa presents on Christmas Eve, which are usually pajamas to wear that evening and the next morning for present opening. Chaz's family opens gifts Christmas day but I was a good girl this year and didn't tempt them all to open more then the one gift like I did my first Christmas with them.

Fu even got in on the action!
Christmas day we opened presents. It was quite the event. We started with stockings. Each person goes around and opens their stocking in which almost every item is wrapped. It takes a bit of time so after that, we broke for a delicious breakfast of rolls and egg bake. The egg bake was out of this world! It was full of meat, bread, and eff, but the best part was all the vegetables.

After breakfast we opened the rest of the gifts. There was a lot of laughing, smiling faces, and excitement. The perfect Christmas morning.

We lounged around after that, played some games, and then had Christmas Day dinner of ham, scalloped potatoes, green beans, and lobster salad. Yummy!

Monday morning we headed up in to the mountains again, this time to visit a crystal mine. The views were breathtaking. Chaz took some lovely pictures as he usually does.

For the remainder of the day, we packed, lounged around, and played some games. That evening we went ice skating at a rink downtown, and the we out for some late night pizza and beer. A wonderful end to our amazing vacation.

Tuesday afternoon we boarded the plane headed home. It is always sad leaving family, especially after such a great time, but it was also nice to think about coming home to our own bed. That and we get to look forward to Christmas with my family this weekend.

I will leave you with this beautiful picture that Chaz took while we were in the air coming home!

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