This year is unlike any of our past Christmases; instead of traveling the world or spending it with family in CT or UT, we are celebrating Christmas, just the two of us, in our cozy home in San Antonio, Texas.
The scrooge (Ben) decided we weren't going to put up a Christmas tree this year, that we will wait until after Christmas to buy one on sale. The same goes for putting up Christmas lights outside of the house. Bah humbug!
A Christmas tree made of Christmas cards will have to suffice.
But somehow Ben discovered the Christmas spirit and decided he wanted to throw the very
1st Annual Snarr Christmas party.
His art skills came in handy to create the perfect invitation...
We played the "name game", Christmas themed Family Feud and of course had a White Elephant gift exchange which was hilarious...
Lisa and her Justin Beiber singing toothbrush.
(Ben gave this gift and would have stole it if he could)
Eryn & Oscar in their lovely, or should I say ugly, Christmas sweaters
Oscar received super cute penguin slippers
Dave ended up with the most sought after gift... a Superman Snuggie!
Ben won a stained and bottomless chopper, which we'll likely re-gift in next years exchange, just for laughs. I chose the ties and bow-tie because I knew Ben was eyeing them and no one would ever take his chopper.
Jackie & Christian with humongous stuffed animals!
And the winners of the Ugliest Christmas Sweater are...
The Shaws, with their homemade turtlenecks.
Their prize: a popcorn tin!
The party was a success and we look forward to throwing the 2nd Annual Snarr Christmas party next year (this time with a Christmas tree and Christmas lights adorning the house, of course!)
Ben and I decided we wouldn't give each other gifts this year and instead threw a party, gave to those in need and will be going on a trip to Cancun in January for our four year anniversary/Christmas/Ben's birthday. The countdown is on... we can't wait to relax on the beach and lose track of time.
But I can't help myself and had to do something for Ben so I gave him the 12 days of Christmas. Each day he has received something sweet, costing little or no money, like massages, a list of reasons why I love him, his favorite candy, movie etc.
I made sure that the fourth day of Christmas fell on our four year anniversary and gave Ben a video of pictures to music recollecting the past four years.
Ben made sure I received the prettiest long stem roses.
I love that he hasn't stopped giving me flowers; from our very first date to our four year anniversary I've received flowers on so many occasions. What looks prettier than fresh flowers on my table?
Can you believe it has been FOUR whole years!?
It is true what they say, I love him more today than I loved him on our wedding day, didn't know it was possible at the time but it is.
After our time in Switzerland we drove our little VW through the night to reach the southern shores of France. Can you believe we drove straight through Italy without stopping!? We did contemplate stopping for a good pizza or view of the Pisa but concluded we would pay Italy a visit within the next few years and spend the rest of our trip exploring France.
We reached Nice, France in time to enjoy a view of the sun rising over the pebble beaches, sparkling on the water.
We stayed at a fantastic little hotel, la Fiancee du Pirate, perched on a hill above the shore; providing us with a nice view from our window of the water.
We spent our days relaxing on the pebble beaches, swimming and sunbathing. We spent our evenings strolling along the boardwalk, admiring the sailboats docked on the shore, window shopping and eating delicious french foods.
We took a little trip to the hillside medieval village of Eze. The view of the Mediterranean from this village is beautiful. We wandered in and out of cave-like shops admiring perfumes, spices and art throughout the little village.
From the coast we headed north and visited a tiny town called Isle-sur-la-Sorgue. That means 'Island on the Sorgue River,' and this town is like a little Venice, with rivers and crystal clear canals everywhere. Once, this was a mill town, with more than 70 water wheels supplying water power to mills grinding flour and making paper, textiles, silk, and wool. Today, you can still see many big water wheels scattered through the town. The running water in the rivers and canals keep them moving. Most of them are covered in moss, and none are used any more.
It was wonderful to visit this little town and we enjoyed the large market, held weekly, where vendors set up their shops along the streets, selling fresh produce, cheeses, meats, olives, linens, lavender, honey, antiques...and just about anything you could think of in a market was there in abundance!
Mmm... sharing a Greek salad for lunch.
We visited the iconic landmark in Avignon, Pont Saint Benezet. This bridge was built in the 12th century and destroyed several times before being rebuilt and finally abandoned, never to be finished in the 17th century.
Palais des Papes
Cathedral Notre-Dame des Doms
Basilique Notre Dame de Fourvier
Cathedral Saint Jean Baptiste
Views of the Basilique Notre Dame de Fourvier from a distance...
After visiting the southern Provence of France and all the beauty, architecture, shopping and art it had to offer us, we traveled back to Paris, France. We chose to stay in a flat by one our favorite sites, the Basilique du Sacre Coeur. We spent our last days shopping and site-seeing in Paris, trying to take it all in before we had to say goodbye. There is still so much to see in France and Switzerland and we are already longing to return. What an amazing trip we'll absolutely never forget!