First stop was RI where we spent Christmas Day with grandson Bobby, 13, and granddaughter Ellie, 8, and their mom, Shannon.
As the grandkids have gotten older, their holiday gifts no longer consist of toys. Bobby enjoyed a new metronome and Ellie received a new iPad.
Bobby recently had a December birthday and one of his birthday/Christmas gifts from Grandpa Grenville was an electric keyboard. He showed Ellie how to play it for an impromptu performance.
We've been taking Christmas photos with long-time friends Sara and David whenever we've gotten together during the holidays. They live in our native NJ and this was first time in several years that we were able to continue this "tradition." (Sara and Dorothy are former high school classmates and remain close friends.)
We even managed to get a "selfie" with all four of us thanks to Grenville's long reach.
One of the most wonderful visits during our NJ stop was having breakfast with these ladies: Virginia (L) and Margaret (R). These 90+ year old women were both friends of my late mother's and met after her passing 5 years ago. They live within 5 miles of one another and talk on the phone nightly. I also talk with them weekly. They are amazing and graceful ladies and we never miss a chance to spend time with them when in NJ.
In NJ, we spent time with family, including newest family members, great nieces, Autumn Rose (L) and Savannah Marie (R). These two cousins were born in Oct 2019, 2 weeks apart. We met Autumn at Thanksgiving, but this was our first time meeting Savannah who's relocating to FL with her parents later this year.
In a baby switch, our two nieces are each holding their niece. Julie is holding her niece, Savannah while her sister, Jamie is holding niece, Autumn.
Happy grandparents shown above are my brother Tony and his wife, Anita, who became first-time grandparents twice within 2 weeks in 2019. Looks like they have their hands full.
It looked like Autumn and Ernie were quite taken with one another. We learned that she enjoys Sesame Street and figured this would be a great gift. Her mom, Julie, has since told us that Ernie travels everywhere with her.
After the NJ family and friends visit, we continued to PA for a visit with granddaughter Lilliana, 3, shown above with mom, Coleen. Lilliana happily showed her art skills.
As per our usual habit, we took selfies in places stayed overnight during our 2019 Christmas to New Year's Eve road trip with stops in RI, CT, NJ, PA and NY covering over 1,000 miles. It was great to see everyone (and we did) during the holiday, but in Christmas 2020 we're planning a quiet NH holiday at home. (It will be our gift to ourselves.)