My dad has a huge family, and their tradition is to get together on Christmas eve (this dates back to prehistoric days, I believe, when the Guffs still ruled over Horseshoe Bend). Of course, not everyone in such a large family can all come every year, but whoever can, does, and this year we had quite a crowd all snug together in my Grandma and Grandpa's house. I think it's amazing that my dad's parents still live in the house in which he and his 8 brothers and sisters grew up.
Here's a shot of some of the girl cousins: Emily, Abby, Me, Sarah and Caroline (others playing in the background, I guess they are less "cheesy").
I pose with my Aunt Pat (we discovered at this visit that she and Josh share a favorite author) who is always a trusty attendant at the Christmas Eve festivities, and my Aunt Deb (who drove with my Uncle Matt and 4 kids all the way from New York to Cincinnati!).
This precious child brightened up the evening for everyone! "Little Abby" hopped, skipped and jumped around all night showing her presents, playing like she was a variety of animals and munching on tomatoes. I hope I have a little one this good someday!
I am so blessed to still have all of my grandparents. Here I am with my Grandma: Anna Mae Benzing. She is quite a classy lady, ready to shine in her Christmas Eve attire. I appreciate the heritage of godliness in the Benzing family. There is an affectionate bond when you gather with family members who share a common history, but an even stronger bond when those members also share a common future.