I know, I know, I'm an evil, evil bad person. I know! I feel beyond bad that it's been so long. I've just been so hung up with other things, and, now, it's the end of the school year, so I have projects to do and finals to take. It's been madness these last few months. And honestly, I've been having some terrible writer's black. Still none of this isn't a good excuse as to why I haven't been around at all in these last few months, but please know that I am VERY, VERY sorry. I want to update more of my stories, but, now, I have to hurry and go study for another final. I probably won't get anything else in until next week because this weekend is going to be super crazy too. If I can get away from it for a few minutes, though, I'll try to get another one in.

If I still have readers, I love you all! Thank you so much for sticking with me.


She jolted from her sleep. Springing into the upright position, she looked over at her husband who had also jumped up. They laughing children stopped jumping up and down. Every year on Christmas they had woken up this way.

"It's Christmas!" They all yelled.

"I never would have guessed." Mark groaned as he lied back down. "Can't you guys wait until after eleven?"

"Come on Daddy." Katie giggled.

"Yeah, Dad, it's Christmas." Danny said.

"Alright, alright." He groaned.

"We'll be right there." Meredith told her children as she roughly rubbed her eyes. Katie nodded, picked Gavin up, and ushered her brothers and sisters out of the room.

"What time is it?"

"Seven." Meredith answered as she rolled onto him. He opened his eyes and smiled at her. She smiled back as she bowed her head and kissed him. His hands moved around her waist and slipped into the back of her pants. Giggling, she pulled back. "They're waiting."

He sighed and kissed her once again. "I know."

She rolled off of him and stood up. He reluctantly slipped out of bed too and pulled on a pair of sweatpants and a white t-shirt. She pulled on her robe and tied it tightly around her waist. She moved towards the door, but he grabbed her waist and pulled her into a passionate kiss. After a few moments, she pulled back and smiled. "Good Morning."

He intertwined their fingers and led her into the hall. The kids were impatiently waiting on the steps for their parents.

"Ready?" Meredith asked as she passed them to go down the stairs. The presents under the tree were piled high wrapped in brightly colored wrapping paper. They really did spoil their kids.

"Yes!" They all cheered.

Giggling, she looked at her husband who nodded. "Go!"

With that they came barreling down the stairs. Katie carried Gavin in her arms to prevent him from being trampled by the twins or Danny. They all squealed and cheered as they ran to the tree. Meredith and Mark took a seat and waited for their kids to make their individual pile of treasures after they ripped the paper off of them.


"Smells great, Babe." Mark said as he wrapped his arms around her waist.

"Thanks." She giggled when his lips found her neck. Turning around, she wrapped her arms around his neck.

"Ugh, can you guys have the common decency to get a room?" Christina rolled her eyes as she walked in. Meredith giggled as she turned her head to look at her friend.

"It's my house, Yang." Mark mumbled as he dropped kisses along the exposed skin of Meredith's shoulder.

"You do realize that you have like twenty other people in your house, right?" Christina asked as she went to the fridge to find herself a drink. Groaning, Mark kissed her one more time on the lips before pulling away.

"Are people getting restless yet?" Meredith asked as she turned back to the food she was preparing.

"Nah, they're fine." Christina replied as she took a seat at the bar.

"Mom?" Katie said entering the kitchen as her father left. "When are we going to eat?"

"In about ten minutes."

"Okay." She replied and returned to the living room.

"Guess who is in town." Meredith said after a few moments.

"Who?" Christina replied.

"The Shepherds."

"Oh god, is this going to be a repeat of 2007?"

"No." She quickly shook her head as a look of horror crossed her face.

"Thank god. Why are they in Seattle?"

"Shepherd is hosting their party this year."

"Ugh, he deserves that."

Meredith giggled rolling her eyes at her friend's obvious hatred for Derek Shepherd. She hated him too, but after all her experiences with the Shepherd family she felt bad for him. But there was still an unsettling amount of guilt in her gut about the whole situation. Sure, it was great not having to deal the dreaded visits of the in-laws. But they were still Mark's family, and part of her felt like she had run them away or contributed to Mark's current relationship with his family.


Dinner went by smoothly as it always did when the Sloans, Kerevs, Kendricks, O'Malleys, and Hamptons got together. They were family regardless of DNA and such things that draw other families together. After dinner, Meredith and Izzie rinsed the dishes and put them dishwasher then headed into the family room. Meredith sunk into the seat right beside Mark and snuggled close against his body. It was getting late, and Gavin was already half asleep on his lap. The other kids still played with their new toys. Katie was just coming back in the room after talking to her boyfriend, that Mark did not like one bit. She sat down on the floor next to Danny who was playing on his new PSP.

Meredith looked around and sighed contentedly. Her family was all she could wish for, and they had, once again, had the perfect Christmas. Her thoughts were interrupted by the shrill of someone's phone looking. Everyone looked at their phones mumbling 'not mine' until Mark announced it was his. Placing a kiss of Meredith's head, he headed into the kitchen to take the call.

"Merry Christmas." He answered knowing that it was Mama Shepherd.

"Merry Christmas, Mark." She said in a motherly tone. "I was just calling to see if you worked anything out?"


"Are you coming over tonight or not, Mark? The family wants to see you and the kids. It's been so long since we've seen you. And we haven't even met little Gavin yet." Ah, the guilt trip. Mark had expected it, but he still found himself getting angry over it anyway.

"Whose fault is that?" He said a little harsher than intended.

She sight mournfully. "You know this is hard on all of us, Mark. We really want to see you."

He sighed and looked towards that family room. "Fine, but we can't stay long. It's getting to be past Gavin's bedtime, and we have guest."

"Thank you, Mark. We're at Derek's now. See you when we get here."

"Yeah, see you." He sighed and hung up. He hesitantly went back to the living room. "Mer?"

She looked over at him. "Yeah."

"Can I talk to you for a second?" She nodded, got up, and followed him into the kitchen.

"What's wrong?" She asked concernedly.

"Nothing. That was Mama Shepherd. She wants us and the kids to come over. I told her that we could but only for a little bit since we have guest and Gavin has to go to bed. But I can call her back, if you want. We don't have to go." He said really quickly as to not upset his wife.

She smiled reassuringly. "It's fine. Let's round up the kids, and we'll go."

"Thank you, Mer. You're amazing." He wrapped his arms around her and kissed her lovingly on the lips.

"I love you, Mark." She whispered kissing him again.

"I love you too." He kissed her one last time before pulling away to grab his keys and coat.

"Kids." Meredith called as she walked back in the living room. "We have to go out for a few."

"But mom…" They started to whine all at once.

"We'll only be gone for a little bit then we'll come back and continue with the party, okay?" They all begrudgingly agreed as Christina shot her person confused looks. Meredith moved over to Christina as she instructed her children to get ready to go. "We're going to see the Shepherds."

Christina snorted. "Have fun with that."

"They're Mark's family." She defended glaring at her friends.

"Yeah, and they're also the in-laws from hell. Hell, meeting John's parents wasn't half as bad as what happened with you."

"So not helping." Meredith snapped in a low tone before heading to the door to get her coat and shoes. Everyone returned in a minute as Mark joined her at the door. "We'll be right back, guys. Please don't wreck my house." She told their guest before leading her family out.

"Where are we going?" Danny asked.

"To see my family… sort of." Mark said. "You guys haven't see them since you were little."

"I remember some of them." Katie said.

"Come on. Let's get this over with." Mark sighed as he climbed into the SUV.