and green balls and gold balls (you can kind of see a little bit of a gold one there near the bottom of the photo).
But I'm getting ahead of myself. Today was filled with Christmas activities. Last night, the Wild Child drove west from Tahoe and spent the night with us so she could attend the extended family Christmas get together today.
It's always fun to see her! Around noon, Hubby's family gathered at his parents' house for a Christmas lunch and gift exchange. Someone (my niece, I believe) thought grandma needed a roach clip. Apparently they sold these at the Santa shop at the kids' school. (Okay, yes, it's actually intended to hold a photo, but being a child of the 60s/70s, whenever I see an alligator clip, I think "roach clip." I sure got grandma worried when I mentioned it to her too! And you should have seen the looks on my sister-in-law's and brother-in-law's faces when I congratulated them on the inspired gift selection! Oh what fun!)
Today's gift exchange was yet another of the "steal the gift" variety--here's one of the baskets I put together--I called this a "Night of Celebration" and it contained a bottle of the red Christmas glog, some nuts, chocolate truffles, "diamond" confetti, Irish cheese ('cause the family's Irish, you know!), and a couple of drink glasses.
I think grandma and grandpa ended up with this basket. Grandma and grandpa rock! Hey, it's no mystery why they had SIX kids!
Grandpa likes a little cake with his whipped cream.
After Christmas with the family ended, we headed home to recharge a little bit, and then I went back out to meet up with my friend Lisa and her family to look at Christmas lights and decorations. I really LOVE looking at lights, but I've missed it the last several years because I had other things going on. Hubby doesn't really enjoy it, so I asked Lisa if I could tag along tonight and she very graciously agreed.
Our first stop was a well-known Sacramento area location called Dovewood Court in Orangevale. We parked a few blocks away and walked. Each and every house in the court is decorated--I took a photo of this "over the top" garage.
After Dovewood, we headed toward the downtown Sacramento area, and visited another section of streets that are highly decorated for the holiday. Somehow photos just don't do these decorations justice--for one thing, they can't catch the magic of the lights. This house, though, looked awfully cute with cut out reindeer and Santa's sleigh, a moon on top of the house, and those HUGE jingle bell balls strung from the trees.
The sidewalks in this area are lined with these lighted arches and it's quite pretty!
The last area we visited is an area known as the Fabulous Forties, where many of Sacramento's nicest older homes can be found. In fact, the homes themselves are so marvelous that even blow-up decorations look terrific! This time we stayed in the car, so I didn't get photos.
At the end of the evening, we went to Rick's Dessert Diner for coffee and treats--the small restaurant was packed with patrons of the Nutcracker ballet and other local entertainments. I'm quite certain that any calories depleted by walking and shivering in the chilly Sacramento night air were replaced at Rick's! Yum!
Tomorrow? Sleeping in! Then house cleaning--I want to make sure Santa has a nice, clean house to visit when he arrives in just a few more days! Thanks for visiting!