A Tale of Three Thanksgivings

Happy Thanksgiving!

Holidays are complicated. It’s that simple. You want to see everyone, to spend time with all of the people that are important in your life, but the reality is that there’s only so many hours in a (holi)day. Add a new grandchild to the picture, and the desire for everyone to “see the baaa-by” gets more intense. With FOUR sets of grandparents in E.V.’s life (including her Lisa’s parents, Grandmargo and Grandpa Les) and in town this Thanksgiving, we figured today was going to be a long one.

And it was. However, it really was a lot less eventful and stressful than expected. Usually we do an early “dinner” at my parents’ house, then head to Ryan’s mom’s for a later Thanksgiving dinner. This year, Ryan’s dad and Lisa’s dad’s birthdays both fell on Thanksgiving and both were going to be in town. Needless to say, our day got filled and our normal schedule shifted quite a bit in order to see everyone, but all went surprisingly smoothly and pleasantly. I wish we had been able to spend more time with each household, but today was a bit like watching an hourglass run out.

We started with a casual afternoon visit to Nanny’s house. I thought we were going to be Santa’s little helpers in putting up Christmas decor, but we were *spared* (ha!) and instead hung out, imagining television mount placement (oh, when boys get talking…), looking through Black Friday flyers, and visiting with Ryan’s uncle, Guy, and his cousin, Troy. The traditional Tompkins family sausage patties and Island Mike’s made-from-scratch apple pie started off the feast-ivities…mmm.

Checkin’ out the fliers…

Homemade apple pie!

After our lunchtime visit, we took Emma Vance home for a quick nap (in an effort to keep her on schedule) and to prepare for our evening events. While the baby dozed, the dogs played in the backyard (clearly it’s what they are thankful this year), and when E.V. awoke, she joined us for some family playtime. The weather was so wonderfully mild today; I had a sweater on Emma Vance in the morning, but she really didn’t need it after all. We couldn’t have asked for a prettier Thanksgiving!

Super Olive!

(Here’s one look at why I LOVE this girl–she’s so stinkin’ happy!)

Next it was off to my parents’ house. It was an unusually quiet Thanksgiving at the Aquilios’ this year–mostly due to the absence of their rambunctious dog, Bonkers, who passed away two weeks ago. It was a bittersweet passing for my family. He was such a…well, to be honest, he was a pain in the ass his whole life, barking and snapping and being crabby ALL the time, but he lived soooo long (18 years?) that it was weird not to hear him instigating the other three dogs during dinner. It was also a little bit of a nerve-wracking meal because my mom got a new oven last week, so this was its inaugural holiday event. Thankfully it did its job well, leaving the only one glitch in the whole meal–a solicitor from the police department called during dinner on Thanksgiving Day. Sheesh. Who thought that was a good idea? Maybe they thought they’d catch people in a charitable mood? Well, clearly they didn’t know who they were dealing with because my mother made it EXTREMELY clear that it was NOT okay to be calling her. In fact, there were a few f-bombs dropped in there. And something about Obama. Which led to the semi-annual Aquilio family political rant that always accompanies each holiday meal. (You know that whole “it’s impolite to speak about religion and politics at the dinner table” notion? Well, the Aquilios never got that memo. Actually, they probably got it, laughed at it, threw it in the trash and declared, “Opposite!”) It never quite seems like the holiday season has begun until The Donald begins his un-politically correct soapboxing–especially on election years. :) Let the record show that I wanted to talk about “The Walking Dead,” but no one was biting. (Pun intended.)

Papa Don enjoying hors d’oeuvres. E.V. enjoying my necklace.

*Not* breaking Grandma’s china

E.V.’s Thanksgiving meal

Then, for our third meal of the day, we headed to Shane and Lisa’s condo in Sandy Springs. Ryan’s dad, Brian, his wife, Rebecca, and her boys, as well as Lisa’s parents were all already there, full on hors d’oeuvres but eager for Popeye’s fried turkey and corn casserole. The food was delicious, partly because I didn’t make anything. :) (We brought Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups for Lisa as our “item.” Classic.) Emma Vance was passed around, happy to be held even though she was a bit tired from so much activity. Margo and Les were meeting E.V. for the first time, and, man, did Emma Vance LOVE Margo! She had bought a pink Taggies elephant for E.V., and when she gave it to her, Emma Vance started giggling. It was hilarious! So Margo started to entertain the baby, and every time she made a funny sound, E.V. laughed and laughed. I wouldn’t be surprised if E.V. snuck out of her crib tonight and packed herself in Grandmargo’s suitcase, she adored her so much. It was Les and Brian’s birthdays (70 and 56 respectively), so we were glad to be able to be with them both for their big days, celebrating with birthday cakes in addition to the traditional pumpkin pie. Emma Vance was so tired that we eventually got her to pass out on Lisa’s bed, and when I went to check on her, Lisa’s dog Jake was passed out as well…in the exact same position as the baby. (Best way possible to end a long day!)

To begin the visual recap :), here’s a video of Emma Vance cracking up at Margo…

The Jake, wondering why everyone wanted to hold the baby and not the dog.

(So of course Mr. Shane paid attention to him!)

Happy birthday!
Babushka baby
Ryan singing E.V. to sleep. (Sigh.) Love them.

Scratching Dad’s beard as he sings.

The baby and The Jake, passed out from too much fun.

Do all my posts end with a picture of E.V. sleeping? Yes? Oh. Well, I suppose that’s pretty accurate to real life at least!

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