Monday, December 19, 2016

Willman Fest

How Amazing it was to have the Willman Clan over to our home this weekend!   It had been two years since this many of us had gotten together. It has been a family tradition to have Extended Willman Family Christmas on the Saturday before Christmas, all of Eric's young life.  All the cousins would get together and have fun, catch up, play, visit.  I remember the first time I went to Willman Family Christmas, Grandma had made sweaters for all the grandkids (there's like 14 of them!). I had one cousin growing up, and he was 10 years younger, a significant difference.  Unfortunately, the weather was Extremely Icy, so there were a number of cousins that couldn't make it for the ice.  But we still had 35 people.

As it turns out my home can get pretty noisy with that many people.   Noisy, but Fun.

Chris got tired of the noise very quickly.  He was smart to go for his headphones. 
We brought up kid tables from the basement, and set them up for the kids.  They had a lot of fun sitting at their own tables. 

 A Super Silly Aunt indeed.  My nieces and nephew crack me up.  
We had everyone spread all over the house.  And there was lots of chatting, as everyone got all caught up.  It felt like it had been Years since we did this.  It had only been two years.  Still, it felt like a long time.  It was so nice to get caught up.  

What a great haul of food!  
We had ham, turkey, and brisket, with sides of salad, mashed potatoes, macaroni, corn casserole, baked beans, bread, deviled eggs and a relish tray.  Grandma always had pickles and olives out for snacking. I glanced down at one point, and saw sweet little Vera, one of our newest family members with black olives on her fingers.  She fits right in!  Willmans love Black Olives.   
Don't even get me started on Desserts! 

After our luncheon, we had a mini-recital. 
Back in the day, when Christmas was at Grandma and Grandpa Willman's, the kids (cousins) would all give a recital on their chosen instruments.  I remember seeing my mother in law do a flute duet with a cousin.  I remember seeing Uncles and Sons all playing trumpet together.   There are a lot of Willman trumpet players.  
This year, the next generation of musicians gave us a demo.  
Kaylee broke out her bells, and played Jingle Bells and Star Wars, the music of our people. ;) 

Alexis broke out her cello and played a duet with cousin Kyle who is accompanying her on her solo/ensemble piece.  I think it's a concerto by Saint-Senz.  There were a few hiccups, our piano needed desperately to be tuned.  And Alexis was apparently playing on a loaner cello, not hers.   Still, in spite of that, I got chills listening to her play.  

The whole fam was listening. 
And it was a Beautiful thing. 
It reminded me of old times at Grandma Willman's.  
How honored I am that our home gets to be the place to pass this on to the next generation.

Even little Jeremiah got in on the action. 
He became Alexis and Kyle's director.  
He's ready to conduct!

After almost everyone headed out, somehow my children were hungry. 
They needed a snack. 
Exhausted but cute.  

Jacob did a great job in underwear. 
He only had two accidents all day, which in the grand scheme of the level of insanity at our house, that's pretty miraculous.  It's also just an adorable picture of Grandma helping him wash his hands. 
I had made the mistake of sitting down.  

I couldn't get up.  

In fact, Jacob came over shortly after Mom and Dad left, and asked to snuggle.  
Eric told us we looked cute.  I said Take a Pic if you want.  I don't remember anything after that.  We were out cold for at least a half an hour.  I have no idea how it happened.  We were exhausted. 
It's taken me a couple days just to recover.