Thanks for the "wait times" website. Looks like you chose the precise wrong time to cross last year!We're not making the rally but are planning on crossing December 8 in Laredo.
We crossed at Bridge II in Laredo Dec 18 last year and it took 8 hours to get through. Lots of paisanos were heading south for Christmas. Might not be as bad ten days earlier, but you might plan accordingly. There's a Holiday Inn across the border in Nuevo Laredo with good security and right off the highway if its too late in the day to travel south.
We'll probably try the Columbia Bridge crossing this time.
EDIT: From reading this, looks like December 18 was during the peak of paisano travel: