This year we decided to spend Christmas with my parents and brother in New Mexico where I grew up. It had been two years since I had been back and I can honestly say that I missed it so much I had thoughts of moving back there on a regular basis. But after staying there for a few days I remembered why I didn't live there... it was and still is the lack of convenience and options that keeps me from calling where I grew up home. Let me just give an example... There is only one Starbucks within driving distance of my parents home and it was only added recently and it isn't even a stand alone Starbucks... It is in a Safeway... that is right a grocery store Starbucks is all they have. So I will leave it to your imagination as to what else they don't have!!
So anyway. Before sharing more of our NM trip with you I want to share with you some pre-Christmas photos. See Maggie received gifts from well us, her god parents, her Aunts and her Nana and Grampa as well. We decided that since we weren't going to lug these across the country for Christmas day and since she doesn't hold focus for very long we would let her open a present or two a day leading up to our departure!
This is a photo of her with her gifts (some already opened) and yes she is pantsless but she is nice and dry in that fresh new diaper!!
So we started our trip with the possibility of delayed flights... our carrier contacted us to notify us that they expected delays do to winter storms... of course we were flying through Denver which is known to come to a stop because of blizzard type conditions... so we attempted and failed to change our connection to somewhere further south like Dallas or Atlanta... But Denver was all there was to choose from by this time in the game. And delayed we were but only by an hour or so, we had no issue catching our connection (it helped that the plane we arrived in Denver on ended up being the same plane were taking to Albuquerque).
All was well we got to Albuquerque... it was cold but no snow... so we swung into whole foods to get Maggie's soy milk and yobaby yogurt before driving into the middle of no where. That is when the clouds became a bit more ominous... we hurried in and out of the Whole Foods then ran into a Lotaburger for lunch (Lotaburger is a must for this NM girl had to get my green chili burger on before we jumped into the car for 2 hours). And we hit the road... by the time we had reached the top of 9 mile the snow was upon us... and the ice had set in and our decent off of 9 mile hill became treacherous. Luckily my Dad was driving and there is no one I trust more behind the wheel in a blizzard than my Dad! And a blizzard it was... cars were sliding off the road all over and the 75 mile/hr freeway had become a 20 mile/hr ice rink. This is when I have to plug *SNOW TIRES* They make a difference and my parents car had just been adorned with studded snow tires!
The last leg of our trip which is typically a 2 hr drive turned into 6hrs and counting and a white flag being raised when we reached the 1st exit to Grants. My parents openly admitted that if Maggie wasn't with them they would have pushed on into the white night... but as Grandparents they didn't want to chance being stranded on the side of the road with their prized granddaughter. A relief to Seana who was ready to be done with riding in white out blizzard conditions where the only action to see were the flashing hazards of the not so lucky cars, trucks and semis in the median or on the side of the road. I will admit this momma was ready to get out as well... So the hotel hunt was on.
We struck out at our first stop but Seana being the problem solver she was had jumped on line and saw the hotel next door still had 11 rooms we jumped on it... By the time we arrived we got the 2nd to the last room and thank god it was non smoking!! We got parked which was an adventure in itself... some cars were abandoned in the middle of the lanes of the parking lot... which explains why later we witnessed someone backing right into a properly parked car when trying to pull out one of the cars taking up the lane! (We also soon learned the freeway had been closed so pulling off was the best plan)
My parents walked to get us food while Maggie ran off some energy... She was quite the trooper having been hauled around since 6 am est!!!
So our night in the hotel though unplanned was nice. The next morning we got back on the roads as soon as they opened and we had breakfast! Longest trip from Albuquerque ever!!
Getting to my parents cabin was such a blessing... we could finally relax and start our vacation... Why not start with a gift for Maggie!
Friday we shopped for last minute items, and I got to see a couple of my parents friends Rick & Kathy!! It was quite the treat for me they are some of my favorites!
Then Saturday we went over to my friend Sara's house to go sledding!! YAY! So we suited up in my parents coveralls... umm they in fact make me look so gay. But isn't Maggie adorable!!
Then the long awaited Christmas Day!! This is mid getting dressed!! My mom put safe to touch, grab, drop and throw ornaments on the tree which Maggie took full advantage of.
We enjoyed our gifts had a wonderful dinner and then Maggie and I got pulled around in a sled outside my parents house!!! (one of the perks of being Mommy to the only grandchild!)
The trip was too short. We really didn't get to visit with very many people but we did enjoy our family time.. and all the snow!