I like kids a lot, but they usually ignore me. I try to be friendly and fun, and in response, they run in the opposite direction.
So you can imagine my surprise when my grand-nephew Dillon requested that I sit next to him at Christmas Eve dinner.
And what a meal it was. Dillon and I bonded over our borscht, fried shrimp and pierogis. I love a child who eats a beet soup.
After dinner, we had a surprise visit from Santa Claus! Here's a pic of Santa with Dillon and Martina. Audrey is hiding behind the couch. "I don't like Santa," she explained after he left.
(Doesn't Santa look an awful lot like Martin?--weird!)
Jesus was in the house, too. Here's Pete and Audrey.
Kasia and Andrej.
Santa brought a sack filled with presents including these awesome boxing gloves. Dillon got knocked out a few times.
Annette was the most excited about Cookie Bonanza. I was pretty stoked too!
The 2011 Cookie Bonanza Menu included: brown butter toffee blondies, gingerbread men and women, lemony slice + bakes, outrageous chocolate cookies, peanut butter surprise and 1950's sugar shuttles.
Then there was lots of cuddles (and fake burps) on the couch. When Tiffany (Dillon's mom) told him to stop force burping, Dillon said, "I can't handle it."
For dessert, Dillon decided that sitting next to me wasn't close enough.
We tried on Dan's glasses.
This is about the time my mom told us to stop. "It will hurt his eyes!"
When is the last time you heard someone say that?
At the end of the night, Dillon told me in confidence, "I like you a lot."
I like you a lot, too, Dillon.
Merry Christmas, everyone!
Most of these pictures were taken by Pete and Jen! Thanks for capturing the night so well.