It had been 3 years since Jamie and I had been home for Christmas and the first time since we moved overseas. We had spent the last 2 winter breaks in Thailand (Christmas day on Koh Chang island in 2008) and Southwest China and Laos (Christmas day in Dali, China in 2009).
Back in September, I found a pretty good flight home, so we jumped on the opportunity and decided to go home instead of going on another trip somewhere in Europe or the Middle East.
We had a wonderful time and really enjoyed spending the time with our families. We apologize to any of our friends for not being able to see you. With limited time over the break, we spent the vast majority of it with our families.
We landed safely in Atlanta and had brought back plenty of bags so we could bring some items back with us. One of the bags was lost by the airline; and unfortunately, it was Jamie's bag with clothing in it. I had also placed my hard drive in that bag, so I was very anxious to get it back. After a couple of nail biting days, it arrived at Jamie's parent's house intact with everything in it.
The day after landing, I went to oral surgeon to have my wisdom teeth removed. Lucky me. The next day, we drove to down south Georgia to visit Jamie's father and had a wonderful fried fish dinner with his family. We spent a couple of full days down there, but then drove back to north Georgia and Cartersville for the next couple of days.
On Christmas day, we spent the morning with Jamie's family in Cartersville, then drove to Tennessee to spend the week with my family.
It was during that week that we readied Griffey to be sent to Saudi Arabia (please see that blog post HERE).
Part of going home was for Jamie and I to retrieve our Settlers of Catan game. We have been playing it on the compound with several people and have really enjoyed learning how to play. We taught my family how to play and my dad ordered a wooden box so all of the Settlers game and expansion packs would fit in nicely. My grandmother even wood burned the top of the box with the image of the original Settlers box cover. Looks great!
On December 30, me and my parents and Jamie and her parents drove to Nashville, TN so dad and I could go to Music City Bowl (Tennessee vs. North Carolina). The game was a blast and the 1st game I had been able to see in 3 seasons. We then drove to Memphis so Jamie and her parents could go watch the Liberty Bowl between Georgia and Central Florida. They had a good time there, and my parents and I stayed on Beale Street to watch the game and listen to some good old blues music at a great little Irish pub.
New Year's Day unfortunately was spent driving back to Georgia after swinging by Calhoun to pick up Griffey. The next couple of days were a blur as we were busy packing and shopping for some needed supplies.
Overall, a great trip home for the holidays. Our original goal was to go home every other year, but the cost of a 2 plane tickets home is quite pricey. Not sure what will happen next year (perhaps Germany), but we certainly did enjoy our trip home for the holidays in 2010. I'll get some pictures posted later...