The Thanksgiving review is going to happen in picture format this year - too many fun pictures, too many fun things. This year's Thanksgiving included LOTS of family time for the Bruces, just as it should be! We had 5 out of 8 Bruce siblings together the week before Thanksgiving and got to hang out with them all week. (Somehow I have no pictures of our time together; I think I must have been hugging on or playing with a kid the whole time!) We started our travels by heading up to the lake Wednesday night to spend the night at Chris & Jen's where we had breakfast Thursday morning to kick off the official holiday. Then we headed to Winston for lunch at my mom's house.

My mom decided not to have turkey this year because (a) no one at my house really eats it anyway (b) she's nice and didn't want all of us who were traveling to have to eat the same meal 5 times in two days (thanks mom!) So instead we had another delicious meal and then walked it off around the neighborhood.

Here we are, the Bruces before the walk - I realize there aren't many pictures of us together on here and thought you all might need to see our faces together! [sidenote: see that 'wear & tear' on my jeans - my mom still can't believe they came that way - which made me think...I guess it is kind of silly that I bought them like that...and like them...]

Ah, and here is the monkey/bean/Caleb while on the walk. LOOK at those little cheeks and sweet face. He was great and so sweet the whole weekend - barely made a peep the whole weekend. Which gave way to finding my sister's secret talent which is that she can imitate a baby's cooing better than an actual baby!
This is an annual picture, somewhat of a tradition that Laura & I take at Thanksgiving - how cute that we match. Except aren't you jealous of her blue eyes like I am? She's beautiful. And great. Laura, Terry & I went to see Four Christmases on Thursday night, which I was excited about...and was again let down! Are my standards too high for movies these days or something? It was short and not great, and call me old and whatever, but I couldn't believe it was only rated PG-13. Ugh.

Be still my heart. Friday morning we headed up to Emory to do Thanksgiving with my dad. We bundled up and walked up to the cemetery (I know...unless you know Emory, just don't ask - who hangs out in cemeteries anyway you ask? - Us, we do. We even took a picture of Caleb by the Hillman headstone but I realize maybe that is just too weird for the average person!) So I put this one up instead because it's precious, and it makes me feel like I am still snuggling his sweetness.

We took Christmas card pictures for Adam and Ashley which of course Adam thinks is hokie, but Ashley says that now that they have a 'real' family, she wins and they get to send one out - who doesn't love a good picture Christmas card? Now. I do not lie. Caleb smiled like this in every single picture. Every single one. My dad stood behind me and would say "1..2..3..blast off" and would jump up in the air - Caleb LOVED it and we all could not stop laughing!

He also makes these funny faces - actually he was trying to sneak in some sucking on his hands; but mom & dad fight him hard to make himkeep his hands out of his mouth - but it's so cute, doesn't he look so sneaky and realizes he has just been caught?

After dinner we sat out on the patio in the freezing cold, made a fire and sipped on yummy hot apple cider that I brought to make for the App football game the next day. This was great and cozy and very festive.

Don't you wish that you were sitting here by this fire?

Saturday morning, we got up early and tip-toed out of the house while everyone else slept to head to the first playoff game for App. The high was 42 in Boone that day and we came prepared. Natalie & Dave were coming to the game with us - which was big, in fact, HUGE. Huge because Natalie grew up in New Zealand, has been living in Hawaii & now LA, and has never been to a football game. When we told her we would tailgate before the game, she said ''what's that?" Oh America. I love you. She was great, took it all in 100%, tailgating, first game of corn hole, hot dog at the football game, sitting through the rain/snow and all!

18 layers, spiked apple cider and a blanket are bound to help anyone stay warm and enjoy wherever they are!
We had such a great Thanksgiving this year and are so thankful for all of our family and friends...no matter how crazy we all might be! And now our Christmas tree is up, our house feels so crazy, and we will be watching at least one Christmas movie a week - one of our favorite traditions we are creating for ourselves! (We did this last year, our first Christmas together - does that count as a tradition already?) Oh well, so fun for us all the same!