Sunday, January 3, 2010

Christmas with the grandkids!

As in the past few years, Christmas found me in Grand Ledge with Jennifer, Derek, Dalayna and Wyatt. I go over on Christmas Eve evening and stay the night, so I get to be there first thing in the morning after Santa has visited. What fun! The magic of Christmas is truly channeled through the hearts of children.

Here are a few pics from Christmas day:

Aunt Jan sent the kids a gingerbread house to make for Christmas. Which they did. Carefully check out the gingerbread man - now there's a man!

Christmas morning, as Dalayna quietly plays with the barnyard that Santa brought her while she patiently awaits everyone else getting up:

Dalayna really. really wanted the barnyard - it was clearly her favorite present. She came back to play with the barnyard and animals again and again.

Dalayna finds a Hannah Montana CD in her stocking - oh boy!

The back rubber thing that Mom got in her stocking, when used on Dalayna's back, causes her to break into wild giggling - she says that it tickled her. Here Dad was just giving her the treatment...

Wyatt is such a little gearhead - man, he just loves things with wheels - cars, trucks, tractors, you name it. The boy has an incredible collection of Hot Wheels, a few of which he is never without. Got some more in his stocking, too. And here he's playing with the giant tow truck that Santa brought him. "Very cool," thinks he.

Wyatt puzzles out the puzzle he got. He did pretty well with it, too.

Frank, Stephany, Dalayna, Derek, Wyatt, and I say "Merry Christmas!

While our Christmas in mid-Michigan was white, it was more like a 'wet Christmas', as evidenced by the water droplets on the living room window. Temps were in the mid-30s, and it rained and/or drizzled most of Christmas day.

But wet or not, it was a wonderful Christmas. I spent the day hanging out with kids and grandkids, playing with them with their new toys. What a treasure to have these people in my life.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Fishbecks at the Sweetwater Grill

Well, everybody made it - despite the early blast of nasty, iffy Michigan winter weather. So Thursday evening found us all at the Sweetwater Grill in Okemos for a wonderful meal, courtesy of Jim, and a fun family gathering. No easy task, all in all. Jan and Bill had to drive several hours in challenging winter road conditions, both on the trip down and on the return trip. Jennifer found herself having to drive from Brighton all the way back to Grand Ledge to collect Derek, Dalayna and Wyatt, then return to Okemos. And poor Steph didn't get out of work until 6:30, and found herself battling downtown East Lansing traffic on the way to the restaurant.

But eventually it all came together, and I think everyone found the effort worthwhile. Some pics from the evening:

Wow, Dalyana is, ummm - startled? Amazed? Terrified? Who knows?

Ah, she's on her game now! Dad thinks she's petty funny!

Jan, Bill, Stephany and Frank

Hoo-hah! Lee and Jan think something's pretty funny!

Aunt Jan gets a hug from niece Dalayna...

Wyatt was a pretty good trooper almost all evening, despite all the commotion and being up way past his bedtime. But he finally pooped out, to the understanding (and amusement) of Mom.

All in all, a good mid-Michigan gathering of the Fishbeck clan. I know I enjoyed it, and I think everybody else did too. Thanks to all for making the not insignificant effort to join us, and, of course, big thanks to Jim for picking up the tab.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Family time

Jim and Lee flew out from Massachusetts yesterday so that they could attend the graduation ceremony from the MSU MBA program of the daughter-in-law of lifelong friends Mike and Diane Kelly. Making this trip back home to mid-Michigan provided the opportunity for everyone to get together. Jan and Bill drove down through very nasty, snowy winter weather from Leelanau peninsula yesterday - a normally 3 1/2 hour trip requiring more like 5 hours in the wintry conditions.

So tonight we do a big family get-together/dinner at the Stillwater Grill in Okemos. Daughter Jennifer and granddaughter Dalayna will join us (looks like son-in-law Derek will have to stay home with grandson Wyatt, who's fighting a case of pink eye and sinus), as will sister Stephany and her hubby Frank. Should be fun, and an opportunity for all to catch up.