This post will probably have to be a little longer than normal, as I am going to briefly relate our wonderful holiday California reunion (try saying that 10 times fast!).
We left our apt. on December 24th at 4am. Katie and Noel were super gracious and took us to the airport. They were pretty bright and chipper, seeing as this is their normal wakeup due to Christiana’s 5am rowing practices 5 days/week!
We arrived at 10am in LAX, and waited a few hours for Ben Rhodes to pick us up. From there, we took our time, stopping for lunch at Rubios. We said goodbye to Ben when he dropped us off in Yorba Linda at Mitch and Trenna’s, our godparents. Two of our godsisters, Valesca and Lori came over, and we had a good time talking and catching up with everyone, even little Lola!
At 6pm, we went to the Christmas Eve Vespers at Saint Barnabas where we were reunited with our wonderful and dear friends, Michael and Courtney. Jesse and I were on the verge of tears the entire service- there is nothing like being with your godfamily and taking the Eucharist all together:) My brother showed up about halfway through (apparently he was late since he was trying to find my ever-elusive Christmas present!).
After we broke the fast with all of our Saint Barnabas family at the church potluck (I had 5 huge helpings of Mac and Cheese…:) we went to Inn-n-Out with Mike and Courtney, Drew, Buhler, Krause, Michael G., Keith, and Jason. We were having so much fun, we forgot that we still needed to make the 4 hr. trek home to Atascadero that night! We left Inn-N-Out with Keith and made it to Atascadero at 4am where we stayed up at least another hour to wrap all of our family’s presents (hey, airline restrictions say NOT to wrap anything!).
Sleeping in was not an option, as Janelle, Keith and Joe woke us up with a huge pillow/plastic bats fight the next morning. After nearly breaking a few lamps, m y mom fed all of us a huge a yummy breakfast filled with MEAT. Next we opened our Christmas presents, the highlights of which were Janelle’s American Girl Doll and Jesse’s Brand New outfitted LAPTOP!! I had been secretly orchestrating both Cone and Honeycutt family funds together to buy Jesse this much needed item, as my laptop is a little small for all of his various studying needs. This took many nights of waiting until Jesse fell asleep before calling my dad quietly out in the living room to research online with him. Jesse is super stoked, and I am just happy to finally have my laptop back! We do have a nice desktop, but since we have been borrowing internet from our neighbors or the apt. lobby for the last 4 months, our desktop is not connected. It has put a definite cramp on my blogging style, that’s for sure;)
Wow, at this rate I’ll never finish! Better speed it up a bit. We left my house at around 5 and headed over the Cone’s where I met my new niece RACHEL for the first time! We ate a wonderfully yummy dinner and opened our Cone presents. The next 4 days with the Cone family saw me getting a haircut with my sisters-in-laws, getting my nails done with Esther, watching all of David’s excellent basketball games, watching Hairspray and Bourne Ultimatum, and hanging out with Tim and Hope:)
On Saturday, Jesse and I borrowed one of my parent’s cars and drove down to LA again to have dinner with our wonderful friends, Kevin and Colleen. Our godparents Mitch and Trenna were there, along with Mike and Courtney. The night was so much fun, filled with great, much needed and missed conversation. We also watched an excellent movie called, “Ostrov” which won the Russian equivalent of the Oscars.
After the party we drove to Mitch and Trenna’s and spent the night. The morning saw us back again at wonderful Saint Barnabas. Afterwards, we went out to lunch at Red Robin with as many of our godfamily as we could track down, including the soon to be married Andrew and Mary:) The minute we got done with our CRAZY waittress (Mitch doesn’t call it “Dead Robin” for nothing!) Shannon Berry and I went shopping at JCPenney to burn a little hole in our Christmas money.
That evening, we all got together for a fun joint Michael and Jesse birthday party at the boys’ apartment. We had yummy fajitas and talked until 1 in the morning. It was good to simply “exhale” verbally with friends. The next day, Monday, was our last day in LA so we had to make sure to pack it full of visits! We met Andrew and Mary at a pancake house, packed up and said goodbye to Mitch and Trenna and finally proceeded to go hang out at the boys’ house one last time. From there we drove out to El Segundo to have one last dinner with Mike and Courtney. We will be counting down the months, guys! Hang in there!
From El Segundo we drove up again to Atascadero to make it in time to my parent’s annual New Years Eve party. It was great seeing all of our Covenant Family and giving Janelle her first sip of Champagne! She hated it, thank God!
The rest of the week we spent with my family, just hanging out. I shopped with my mom and Janelle, went on a date with my mom to see “Atonement”, saw MORE of David’s games (can’t get enough!), took my brother Joe out to lunch, hung out with my Dad in SLO, and ran around in the rain with Tess at San Simeon and San Luis (IT WAS WET!!). Jesse hung out with his grandfather, went to a pub with his Dad, had breakfast with his mom, coffee with Brooke, tried to hang rain gutters with my dad but ended up at Starbucks, and helped Janelle to torture Joe (complete with planting an amp at Joe’s bedside and serenading him with a guitar and microphone until he woke up..:).
LAST but not least, we had a wonderful joint birthday dinner for both Tess and Jesse at the Trinidade manor, since both of their birthdays are on the 5th. The Black, Cone, Honeycutt and of course, Trinidade families were all there, making it a ton of fun for all. I gave Tess a fun picture frame filled with fun photos of our time in San Simeon.
That’s all for now! Our trip home was quite eventful, so I will save it for tomorrow. If you want to see some photos, go here. It’s not complete yet, since Tess hasn’t sent me some from the party.