With all that said, I wanted to step back and talk about December a bit. We had a wonderful, but busy month. Allie was sick a bit with a lot of congestion, but she tolerated it much better than most adults would. While she wasn't as social when we were out and about as she normally was, she was still fun and a joy to be with. Early in the month we celebrated Christmas with our very good friends the Mize family. I've spoken of them many times before and they really fall into the "family" category more than the friend category. Tim and Randy's friendship goes back to when Tim was about 12 years old and that seems to put them more into the category as "brothers" than "friends". Without giving away ages, you can figure that was quite a while ago. They have seen each other through many stages of life and been there for each other in many ways more than official family members. It is such a wonderful thing to have a friend that knows you and accepts you as you are for so many years. Tim was there at Randy and Sharon's wedding and even took pictures for them - which is fun to look at so many years later. When Tim and I got together many moons ago (it has been 15 years ago this week), he often spoke of them and meeting them was very important. Since that meeting, I've been able to grow in the relationship and consider them family as well. In fact, all of them played a big role in our wedding. Randy and Sharon's oldest daughter, Carrie is only a few months younger than Tim's oldest daughter, Candace (who celebrates her 26th birthday today - Happy Birthday, Candace). Their youngest, Kristin, is several years younger than Tim's son, Cruz. Therefore, raising children has been something we've done together for years. Now, they are here for us as we enjoy Allie. Carrie and her husband, Nick, couldn't come for Christmas, but Kristin, Sharon and Randy came bearing gifts and fun. We had a wonderful day hanging out together and they spoiled us in the traditional Mize fashion. Allie enjoyed sharing her videos and toys with them and we all just pretended it was Christmas morning and had a lot of fun. We actually celebrated a couple weeks before Christmas given we wouldn't be able to see them on Christmas day. It is such a comfort to have friends that go back so many years and are always with you through thick and thin.
Thanks to all of the Mize family for giving us so many wonderful memories of fun times together!