This December I decided to stay here in the DR and not come back to California and instead welcome my whole family here for Christmas in the Caribbean. It was such a blessed time having everyone (mom, dad, leah, jared, lyla mae, and jacob) here in my home and sharing with them my love for this country and it's people. It was also wonderful to have them here to get to know my boyfriend of 8 months, Cristian. Despite the small language barrier he and my family were able to get to know each other wonderfully using "spanglish" with minimal confusion.
We had Christmas Eve dinner (the big celebration here in the DR) with Cristian's family complete with roasted pork, the traditional dish for "Noche Buena". We then had Christmas morning at my house, complete with ebelskivers (danish pancakes, a Lombard family tradition) for breakfast. The next few days were spent relaxing at my house, hiking to waterfalls, visiting Mata Gorda, and the guys going crazy on motorcycles. From there we travelled to a beach resort on the south side of the island in a town called Boca Chica. We spent 2 beautiful days relaxing by the pool and swimming in the warm caribbean sea. On our last day we toured the capital city of Santo Domingo, stopping first at "Los Tres Ojos" which are 3 underground lakes, and then walking around the Colonial District where there are many old historic buildings from the days of Columbus.
Overall it was a wonderful trip and I am so happy and thankful that they were all able to make the trip down here. It is always so wonderful to me to have all my family together, especially after not seeing them for more than 6 months.
If you would like to see pictures of their time here you can click on this link which will take you to my facebook album (you will be able to look at the pics even if you are not on Facebook.)