Every three years, for at least the last nine, my siblings (and our families) and I have all met up in North Carolina, at our parents' house, to celebrate the Christmas holiday. We decided to do this three-year rotation because it allowed us (theoretically) to do one Christmas just with our nuclear families, one with our spouses' families, and then one all together. We go to North Carolina so that our parents can host. And because my dad has trouble getting time off around the holidays (he's a pilot). This will probably be the last year we do it. As our families have grown, the travel has become more complicated. But having done it for 2009, I feel so fortunately that we've all made this committment to spend time together for a week or so at least every three years. And we're especially lucky because, while we pay our air fare, my parents live in a house large enough to hold all eighteen of us. Not without a lot of work on their part. But it's so much fun, and I feel so grateful we can do it.
Before we headed off to North Carolina this year, though, we celebrated the Christmas holiday with the part of Jason's family living here in San Diego. Here are a couple photos of the night before our departure:
As you can see, there was no shortage of gifts -- or smiles-- hanging out with the S family.