It’s two days after Christmas, and the family is all in Georgia visiting my mother in law. We’re in Northwest Georgia, basically we are about 10 miles south of the Tennessee border. We arrived via an 18-hour drive from New England. I believe that this is the single longest drive I’ve ever taken in a single, non-stop trip. Certainly, I have driven further over a multiple-day drive, but 18 hours in one day is very draining. The worse part was that I slept for only a few hours the night before leaving, then almost none in the car. I don’t sleep well (or at all) in cars or on planes. You’d think that I could find a way to get comfortable, but it doesn’t happen. So, we arrived exhausted, ready to collapse. We did, and after a solid night’s sleep, were refreshed and ready to start visiting.

It’s been cold here, as should be expected in late December in the mountains of Georgia — no snow, just a heavy frost on the car windows each morning. Sue got to see all three of her brothers this weekend, including David who lives in Florida and whom she hasn’t seen in many years. Late yesterday, my nephew showed up with his kids – peers of my own kids. They were instantly having fun. Today, after most got a good night’s sleep, they should have the opportunity to burn off some much needed energy. They haven’t see this family in several years, although the eldest (Alex) and my daughter have started chatting quite a bit via Facebook. It was an instant bond when they saw each other – and the hug was quite genuine!

We had quite a meal last night – 9 adults (ranging from 45 to 87) and 6 children, ranging from (3) 17-year olds to 12. I was glad to neither be the eldest nor the youngest! I had never eaten beef wellington before – it was very well prepared, but didn’t end up sitting with me well. I think the combination of very heavy foods and lack of salad-like substances, that my body is rejecting my holiday-eating patterns. We have eaten very well over the past year, so changing that pattern for more than a few meals in a row evoke havoc!

So far, the vacation has been a good bit of work, but all worth while getting in some visiting that has been long overdue, and never knowing when it will be the last time, is being embraced. At least my dog is getting spoiled with all of the attention!

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