Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Christmas Time Already!

Hi, Mommy! Finally - a new blog post!
At last. Something to write about:  Christmas with the Ward Family. My mother was starting to wonder if I would ever post again! The whole family was able to meet in Kearney this past weekend (December 16/18.) We packed alot of fun into our brief time together!

"Welcome home, Kids! When are you leaving?" 
Mom and Dad have grown accustomed to having a quiet empty nest. With kids, grandkids and four great grandkids, it does tend to get a bit noisy when we're all together.
Great Uncle Scott got a squeeze from Allie - the oldest of the "greats." Allie is now 5-and-a-half and killing it in kindergarten.
Our baby nephew, Clark, is now 18 and a freshman at UNL. He's very sophisticated and can't quite bring himself to enjoy his family. Luckily, Miracle the Cat offered some relief. We love you, anyway, Clark!
Meanwhile, Clark's big sister (Karli) and beautiful mother (Teresa) couldn't have been sweeter!
Warning: watch out for these three. Cousins can get a little crazy! (Kitra and Maggie are already 3 but Allie does her best to keep them in line.) Brooke outfitted the squad in adorable pink leggings and cute Scotty t-shirts. Of course, being a Scotty Dog expert, I heartily approved!
Sweet 8-month-old Bailee is the apple of everyone's eye - including Great Gramma! Bailee rarely fusses and loves being held by whoever wants to hold her. Isn't that the best? I hope she never outgrows this stage.
Our niece Chelsie took control of the food and set-up - and ran it all the way to the finish line of our successful event! Since our family of 24 (22? 26? I can't keep track) has outgrown Mom & Dad's house, we moved the celebration to Dad and Nick's business, utilizing the conference room. Chelsie had everything in place, from elegantly dressed tables to a beautiful tree. Best of all, we let Hy-Vee do the cooking so clean-up was a snap. Thank you, Chelsie Lyn! We all appreciate your hard work! (Note how Chelsie's mom and dad and brother all pitched in to get the buffet line ready.)
Again this year, all of us were spoiled rotten with the quantity of gifts!
Chelsie and her mommy, my much older sister Karolyn. 
Now this pic is a keeper: the four original kids. 
From left, Tim, Mark, Kristin & Karolyn. 
Kitra took time away from her duties of passing out presents to give her baby cousin Bailee a little pat. So sweet!
Speaking of Kitra...who gives little kids recorders? Each of the girls got one and created quite the calcophony.
General chaos ensued as presents were opened. (Note Allie with her own recorder.)
These three nieces have reached the stage in their young lives when they have earned their own copies of the Ward Family Cookbook. It was my honor to design custom covers for the notebooks that hold family recipes typed by Mom back in 1984. Lots of good stuff in there!  
Dad and our nephew Joe show off their new winter hats from Santa.
Lauren and her boyfriend Jeff - ugh, too cute! 
We took the time to get everyone seated for a family portrait, using the camera's timer. Despite the noise and having to travel through icy conditions and nearly freezing in the cold north wind (in the time it took to run from the car to the house), I declare this Christmas gathering a huge success!
Merry Christmas!
Stay Tuned for More Christmas Adventures!

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