However, it was a great Thanksgiving.
John's father generously organized a family vacation down to Disney that took place through an extended Thanksgiving Day weekend. In total, 10 of us spent 6 days together in a combination of Fort Lauderdale and Orlando.
However, before we packed ourselves away on the airplane, I was able to make a quick stop at my Mom's house beforehand. Since she thought we were already Florida-bound, she was SUPER surprised to see Vincent come barging through the door.
That was probably my favorite part of the entire day. I love surprises like that!
We spent about 45 minutes there before having to leave. I hated having to go so soon. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday of the entire year, and I missed not spending it with my family.
But I did spend it with family, so I can't really complain. Vincent and I went back to Jersey to pick up John and then meet up with his sisters and their husbands for the trip to the airport. Surprisingly, everything went really smoothly. The kids were great on the plane and baggage was efficiently shuttled onto the conveyor for retrieval. John's father was already outside waiting to pick us up, and when we unloaded at the Ft. Lauderdale house, John's mom had already set out Thanksgiving dinner for everyone.
It was a lot of fun, and I really enjoyed the interpersonal communication shared as opposed to contending with iPads and television screens. A family game played around a family table is a great way to share laughs and love (and terrible, terrible jokes).
We spent another day in Ft. Lauderdale before making the 2.5 hour trek to Orlando. That wasn't so bad as the kids were content to watch two Charlie Brown videos while I caught up on some reading. John and his father talked sports in the front seat while the other half of our party followed our SUV in a rental.
Vincent surprised me by going on several of the "big kid" rides that I thought would be too scary for him. Tower of Terror, Space Mountain and Jurassic Park were among them!
He and my niece, Alliya, also had a great time playing in the swimming pools at both houses. Vincent is getting much more comfortable jumping into deeper water so long as Daddy is there to catch him. He began following Alliya's lead doing trick jumps into the water.
Alliya, for her part, is becoming quite the little fish. She no longer fears the deep water like she used to. I snapped so many photos of them swimming around together.
I hope your Thanksgivings were just as wonderful as mine. Maybe even moreso!