Daily Archives: November 27, 2010

Christmas Gathering of the Clan

Tonight, Christmas social season opened!

The first of our Christmas gatherings was a family dinner outing. For the second year in a row, we enjoyed a family get-together with B’s extended family “pre-Christmas.” This year, we all met at The Huether where we had a private room, all to ourselves. Going out to a restaurant works for so many reasons: no one has to cook/host, so everyone can visit and mix; the vast menu allows everyone to choose a dinner of their liking; the private setting this year meant that we could socialize and change up seats freely – no need to be quiet or mindful of nearby diners!

This is a true family celebration: in addition to ourselves and Brad’s parents, we meet up with B’s mom’s side of the family as well as B’s dad’s. One occasion, multiple visits! B’s parents will soon depart for Florida for the winter (lucky, lucky!) so tonight really was our Christmas with the family.

this room at the huether is so cool! like being in a cosy cave!

Meet the family!…

mom and dad k!

b and me!

One side of the extended fam:

aunt kathy and uncle bob!

isabelle and cousin jen!

milla and cousin sara!

….And the other side!…

uncle roger and debbie!

cousin andrew and alison!

cousin daniel and ashley; cousin matthew

We mingled during “cocktail hour,” then sat down for food. One long table accomodated all of us!

la grande table!

I liked this seating arrangement more than the two shorter tables we had at our get-together last year. Even though we were spread out down the table, it seemed like a more cohesive unit than being at smaller, separate tables.

We exchanged gifts with mom and dad K; B received his favourite annual treat:

if this year is like other years, these turtles will be gonzo in <24 hours!

Below, a few tips for organizing large family gatherings:

  • pick a date early in order to ensure 100% attendance (our gathering tonight was booked at least two months ago)
  • designate one person to reserve the location (thanks, cousin sara, for getting us our private spot at The Huether!)
  • choose a central location that is easiest for the majority of family members to get to (mom and dad K and Andrew and Alison were the only attendees who needed to travel  – and many thanks to them for driving in for our celebration)
  • pick a date far enough away from Christmas so that people will not have conflicting engagements (our last-weekend-in-November date beats the Christmas social rush)

Tonight was a lovely lead-in to four more weeks of festivities! So nice to catch up with everyone, again. Even the weather was on the Christmas-y side: it’s been snowing off and on today and again, tonight, the white stuff was lightly falling.

All in all, this was a lovely evening. The best part is the visiting and conversation – lots to catch up on from everyone! Good times!