Family Christmas 2018

Happy Friday friends!  I’m still dragging around here in an after Christmas coma. Lauren and her family were here for the whole week and just left today, so we’ve been celebrating and hanging out as a family for days now.  We also had some wonderful family time with Mark’s family for two days as well and so I have a lot of sharing to do today! You’ve always loved seeing my family and now you get to see our celebrations with both families as we celebrate Christmas together. It’s been so nice being part of Mark’s bigger family, I love how close they are too and it was fun hosting a gathering at our house this year.

Mark was off for over 2 weeks for Christmas and that was so nice. It was so fun to have Mark’s family over to our house on Christmas Eve afternoon. There were about 20 of us and we gathered round the dining table and hung out in the family room. I made a ham and everyone brought some sides and it was delicious. His 4 girls and their spouses/significant others were with us too, along with all 4 grandchildren. Mark’s sister, Kim and her husband and 3 adult children came too and we sure enjoyed the day of just being together, eating and celebrating.

This is cute little Rose who turned 1 in October. She sure is fun to dress, we got her this outfit for her birthday. Pretty in pink!

These little ones sure make Christmas more fun. Baby Henry, our red headed cutie pie is such a doll.

Mark’s mom has red hair, so maybe that’s where he gets it. He’s such a doll with his red hair, fair skin and blue eyes.

He’s such a happy guy too and smiles constantly.

Mark’s other grand boys, JJ and Jaxton always have fun and he got them some remote controlled cars for outside, which they played with that afternoon. They are all boy and are always on the go.

Little Rose got a new doll!

Mark’s sister, Kim, and part of her family around the kitchen table. I didn’t get pics of everyone who was there, but we had such a nice day. It’s nice to actually use our dining room during these get togethers.

Eating, visiting, and relaxing was the mode of the day.

Mark’s mom and day got family pictures for Christmas, taken at Thanksgiving.

Mark and cutie pie Rose. She’s such a doll and growing so fast.

On Christmas Day, Mark and his daughters have had a tradition of going out to Chinese late Christmas day, so we did that again this year. That tradition started after watching A Christmas Story for so long, they decided to do that too. My family is talking about doing the same next year. This is the whole crew after eating Chinese. There are surprisingly a lot of people who do Chinese on Christmas day!

We came back to the house and opened a few presents and played with the babies afterwards. Look at those sweet dimples!

Christmas morning we went to my sister’s house for breakfast and opening presents with my family. It’s a relaxing time too and takes what seems like hours to open them all. Those girls are pretty spoiled with all the presents they get.

Mark and I on Christmas morning. I love celebrating with both our families.

What a blessing to have both our parents with us still. We know that each year could bring changes and it’s hard to think about that, but that’s reality and I’m so thankful for each and every Christmas we have with all of them. Dad decided to dress up a little for Christmas and I was immediately taken back to his Pastor days and how he looked when he dressed up then.

Mark and Parker have bonded since she first met him and she loves it when he’s there. Bailey, my sister’s dog has to tolerate Parker wanting to hold him all the time.

Lauren’s cute family in their PJ’s again.

Parker got a new bike and Iris got a tricycle.

Santa Bruce got his Santa pants on and commenced to handing out presents as he always does.

He had a little helper this year too.

As you can imagine, those girls get excited over Christmas. I got Parker this Aquabeads set. I’m not sure what it does, but I’m sure she will love it.

Bailey taking it all in.

Mom and dad in the big chair. Mom got a cross stitched Iris ornament that Lauren made for her. Lauren gets her stitching abilities and interest from mom.

Iris and her mouse bank.

Lauren made both girls button boxes. She had seen this somewhere and decided to give them a handmade one. They loved them! Renee and I cleaned out our buttons and gave them all to the girls to take home.

Both girls got headlamps. I think they do some camping out these days.

They both had to try those on.

Mom got a personalized tin from Lauren of the girls. So cute!

Those presents took awhile, but we made it through!

Iris and her new gloves and hat.

Bruce’s mom, Doris, is a very talented artist and she painted this beautiful painting of Lauren and Philip’s engagement picture on canvas. Lauren was so surprised and touched that she got all teary eyed. It’s gorgeous and looks just like the photograph!

Mark and Iris playing with the button box.

Santa Bruce taking a well deserved break.

We had planned on doing a taco bar for Christmas afternoon, but Mark and I were leaving to eat Chinese and no one else was hungry either after a huge breakfast, so we waited until the next night to eat them. They really tasted good then!

I made the chicken and peppers and onions and guacamole and Renee made the beef and fixings. It was delicious! We have almost decided that next year we’re not going to try for a big meal after Christmas breakfast, but going out for Chinese sounds pretty good to us too!

It was a wonderful week of celebrating, family time and just being together. There was plenty of movie watching, eating, and just hanging out which really a big part of what Christmas is all about. Of course, Jesus is the reason we celebrate, but having a close family is the icing on the cake. I’m so blessed to have two families to celebrate with now, so I hope you enjoyed this peek at how we celebrate and love!

I haven’t taken down my Christmas yet, but will wait until after New Year’s. I’ll be ready then and am determined that January/February will be my months to organize. I’ve been wanting to get our basement whipped into organizing shape and this is the year to do it! We’re also planning a pretty significant kitchen renovation in January too, so there will be plenty going on around here to share with you. I hope you all enjoyed your Christmas holiday as well and are ready for a New Year!

I’ll be back on Monday to share all the projects we completed around here this year. It was pretty amazing to look back and see what all we’ve done in a year! It’s a huge motivation to keep going and get more checked off the list!  I’m also making it a link party which I have been doing for a few years for other bloggers to join up too, so stay tuned for that and I’ll get back on my normal schedule again before too long. But January is traditionally a slow month for me, so I may not be posting quite as much.

- Rhoda


  1. Linda Hickey says

    Much beautiful memories to store forever.

  2. Lynda McDuff says

    Beautiful family and photos.

  3. Cathysherman says

    Im interested in following your kitchen reno. They rip mine out 1/16. Mine is moving plumbing and everything. Ill have a sink under a window to look out and see nature s miracle. Bless your family so many little ones. My folks have gone so my pleasure comes from little grand nieces. You are blessed.

  4. Thank you for sharing. It is always fun to see your family. Our Christmas was just has busy although we started earlier. Our huge extended family on the 22nd. My daughter in laws family has lots of celebrating on Christmas Eve and Christmas. So, I do Christmas Adam (our church started that for the Dec 23rd services) but we still went over to see what all Santa gave the grands at my son and daughter in laws house and Christmas morning breakfast at my daughter and son in laws.

  5. Rhoda,

    I love the pictures that you post of your families. I have always loved your family. Its wonderful to see that you are now part of a bigger family. So happy for you and Mark. Well deserved my friend. What a blessings.
    Happy New Year to you and Mark!

  6. Rhoda,

    I have always loved your family. Its wonderful to see that you are now part of a bigger family. So happy for you and Mark. Well deserved my friend. What a blessings.
    Happy New Year to you and Mark!

  7. You are truly blessed with love and family. May the Lord richly bless you and your families in the New Year !

  8. Theresa Swint says

    I enjoyed all your Christmas Family pictures, it is a busy time of the year for everyone. It looks like both families had a good time together. Love getting pictures of everyone so I can look back of the good time making memories. Parents look great, also like pictures of kiddos. I agree that children make Christmas more fun. I would like to hear more about button box and tin with picture of children. Did Lauren make both of these or where did she purchase these gifts? Tell your parents Hello and Happy New Year from one of your middle Georgia fans. Rhonda, you look so happy in all these picture, so great to see your pretty smile.

    • Thank you, Theresa, it’s been such a sweet time with both families. Loved it all! I’ll find out where Lauren got the tin, I’m sure she ordered it online. The button box she made herself using a wood box from the craft store, she stained it lightly and then added those little cute pieces to the top. She found some of those on Etsy and the button with their name on it came from England. She said it ended up costing a lot to make this, but it sure turned out great.

  9. I loved the Tin Lauren gave your mother with the picture on it. Can you find out where she got that made? Good idea.
    My sister & I went to Franklin in Nov. Love that cute town. We ate at Gray’s On Main & loved every bite.
    Thanks & Happy New Year

  10. Always love seeing your family together. Those children are precious and I’m glad you and Mark had a wonderful Christmas together!!

  11. Thank you again for sharing both of your families. Wonderful memories made! And I know this is a rather odd thing to say but…..I’m always pleased to see you and your family using disposable plates and cups at your family gatherings😬😂 I’ve always looked at other bloggers and think…how do you function using non disposable tableware…it’s just not normal🤣😂🤣 There, I said it, especially after noticing this for awhile. Love it! Happy New Year to you and your loved ones!

    • HI, Mary, that made me laugh out loud! I couldn’t agree more. My family has always used disposable. We just don’t like that extra work when so many people are there.So I get it, the bar is high online and I think we have to do what we want to do in our own families!

    • I was thinking the same thing, Rhoda. I like to see the pretty table settings on other blogs, but I identify more with your families style. Don’t ever change Rhoda.

    • HI, Anise, it’s way too late to change now. We are not fancy formal people, so our entertaining reflects that too.

  12. I always enjoy seeing your family posts! Happy New Year!

  13. What wonderful memories you are blessed to make and enjoy with both sides of your and Mark’s family…those little children are so precious…

  14. Rhoda thank you for sharing your beautiful family. Glad you guys had a good Christmas. You need to do a house tour of Renee’s house. Collecting ideas for the new year😍

    • HI, Lucy, I need to do an update at my sister’s house, she’s done lots of changes since the last time I shared.

  15. Such fun and precious times! Loved seeing your celebrations with family and your Dad is looking well. Headlamps! I had to borrow my grandson’s for legit reasons lol

  16. This is what Christmas is all about: special times with family and creating memories. Have a wonderful New Year!

  17. Thanks for sharing your family celebrations with all of us. Happy New Year!!

  18. I had to laugh too at the comment regarding disposable plates. Holidays are about being with family and friends. I’ve done both fancy dishes and disposable and don’t think people even noticed what the food was served on- just how the food tasted.

    • Yes, Shanna, that’s exactly how we are. We could care less about a fancy set table. We’re all about keeping it as easy as possible.

  19. I loved seeing your dad dressed up….I would love to have heard some of his sermons…I feel like he would have been a “fire and brimstone” preacher. And the absolute delight in your mom’s eyes and her smile is showing off her iris needlepoint….just beautiful. It’s fun to celebrate with even more people each year as my family grows thru weddings and new babies! We are both very blessed to be able to celebrate the birth of Jesus with so many friends and family members.

    • Hey, my dad was a very beloved pastor and he has a big heart. Not really fire and brimstone, but he was a good preacher. So many still love him and he always shared from the heart too. So much to be thankful for absolutely!

  20. I had a great Christmas this year too. I think it was because we all decided not to exchange gifts. We don’t have any little ones anymore. We have all had some unexpected expenses this year and there isn’t a thing that any of us needed. We all brought a gift and did the left, right ,swap game and had a ball. We also did a low country boil which made the meal easy. It really was a non stress Christmas. Just fun, lots of laughter and games.

    • HI, Cindy, I love that, sounds like my kind of Christmas. We don’t need a thing either and I would love to stop with the gift giving except to the kids, but my sister doesn’t want to stop it. So we’ll see if I can talk her out of it eventually. I like more low key and less stress too. Low country boil sounds great!

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