For the first time in my 62 years, I didn’t spend Christmas in Georgia. With Jason, Blair and Blake having Christmas plans already set (that didn’t include a trip to the lake), Ted and I and the pups loaded up the truck and headed for Arkansas to spend Christmas with Julie, Matt, and the grandchildren. We’ve spent the last several New Year’s Eves with them (arriving a couple of days after Christmas), and last year we were lucky enough to get lots of snow while we were there also. Not a lot of snow this year, but being there to watch Jordan and Matthew come downstairs to see what Santa had left was so special – it’s ridiculous that this was the first time we’ve been with them for that!
We arrived the evening of Jordan's birthday, and a couple of nights later celebrated at her favorite restaurant . . .
Shogun's! Oh my gosh, every course was wonderful and cooked to order right in front of us by a very talented chef.
We tried to get in a walk around the neighborhood every day we were there - even when it was really cold. The kids loved that the dogs got to go too!
- Jordan and Matthew have been without a dog for almost two years after losing their precious Dalmation Hewie. I see another wagging tail in their future real soon, but two rescued kitties, Peaches and Abby, are enjoying being the center of attention right now.
A couple of days before christmas we rode about 15 miles into the Ozark Hills to hike the Tanyard Creek Trail.
The trail sprawls through the Bella Vista, Arkansas recreational area and includes trails, hills, bridges and . . .
. . . waterfalls.
At the top of the trail is the beautiful, recreational Lake Windsor . . .
. . . the perfect spot for a boy to throw rocks . . .
. . . and for a granddad to have a chat with his grandson.
A little visual proof about the temperature.
- The 2.5 mile trail was built by thousands of volunteers and financed by thousands of donated dollars. Trees and plants are labeled, and Jordan told me she has been here on field trips. It incorporates a very old county road and the meanderings of Tanyard Creek . . .
. . . and it was a great place to take pics of the grandkids!
Christmas Eve afternoon found Jordan in the kitchen decorating cookies for Santa Claus . . .
. . . and Matthew came up with some great designs of his own.
That night we all went to church for a candle light service, then on to a neighborhood party.
- Just before bedtime, Jordan and Matthew put out Santa’s cookies and milk.
Christmas morning Matthew was beside of our bed at 5:15 whispering, "Get up, get up! I just heard Santa leave!" And he was right!
We got a dusting of snow during Christmas day, but nothing that prevented us leaving the next day for Atlanta.
We had a wonderful time during our week in Arkansas with our children and grandchildren, and spending Christmas with them was so much fun. Hmmm . . . maybe we’ll go back next year!
Kids and dogs - perfect friends. (Don't know what "look" Bear was going for here, but it was pretty funny!)
Our beautiful Arkansas family.
Tune in later this week for the rest of our holiday – in Atlanta with Jason, Blair and Blake. We visited the unbelievable Georgia Aquarium while we were there, and I’ve got lots of photos. Amazing place!