While we were in Costa Rica, Bobby and I decided that we were going to surprise his mom for Christmas. His mom lives in Bemidji, Minnesota, a small, college town about 5 hours north of Minneapolis.
I found out that my office was closed from December 22-January 2, and Bobby has a lot of flexibility in his job, so we planned to leave the morning of December 22 for Bemidji. We told his mom that we would stay in Virginia for Christmas morning and then hit the road, so she wasn’t expecting us until December 26.
We drove 22 HOURS STRAIGHT to Minnesota. I know what you’re thinking…but it wasn’t that bad. We left at noon on the 22nd and arrived at 9am on the 23rd (mind the 1 hour time difference). I drove the first half and then Bobby drove overnight. I slept fairly well while Bobby was driving, so the drive felt shorter than what it was.
Bobby’s grandparents knew our itinerary, so when we arrived in Bemidji we stopped at their house to freshen up. We found out that Bobby’s mom hadn’t gotten her Christmas tree yet, so we headed to the local hardware store to grab a tree. Bobby’s mom was at a Christmas luncheon, so we parked on a side street and waited for her to pull up to her house. When she pulled in, we jumped out of the car, grabbed the tree and ran to the back door.
It was magical! She was speechless.
Bobby’s brother and sister had some last minute Christmas shopping to do, so we jumped back in the car and drove around town. After a few hours of shopping, we grabbed some Thai food from the new (and only) Thai restaurant in Bemidji. It was a loooong day, but we were happy to be with family.
On Christmas Eve, there is a tradition to light luminaries on Lake Boulevard. Bobby’s mom, Bobby’s sister, her boyfriend, Bobby’s brother and I lent a helping hand to fill the bags with snow and place along the boulevard.
When Bobby’s grandparents lived in Virginia, they would host dinner on Christmas Eve. The traditions included lasagna for dinner and a game of White Elephant. Bobby’s grandparents moved to Minnesota full time about 5 years ago, so I can’t tell you how excited I was to relive our former Christmas Eve traditions. Plus, just look at how cute their cottage is!
On Christmas, we just hung out at Bobby’s mom’s house. We hung lights on the tree and made gingerbread houses.
Over the next few days we visited Bemidji Brewing, helped hang items at the house, visited with Bobby’s great aunt (who turned 97 in XXXX), watched home videos, and spent some time playing in the snow with Mowgli.
It was a great Christmas. Certainly one we will never forget!