December 1st - Fiery sunrises and a trip to the Santa Claus House
I prefer winter and fall, when you feel the bone structure
of the landscape - the loneliness of it,
the dead feeling of winter. Something waits beneath it, the
whole story doesn't show.
morning, as I was chatting with Steve online, I glanced out
the window and watched another day dawn. These late sunrises
are absolutely breathtaking, and I'm glad that they come later
in the morning. That way I don't miss them.
The sky was painted with fire this morning - a
deep orange-red that gradually grew from the horizon upward
as the minutes passed. I took my camera and ran outside into
my side yard to capture the display more completely. I also
turned the webcam toward the window so that Steve could enjoy
the view. While the image wasn't as breathtaking via the webcam,
he could see that day was finally dawning, even though it was
At noon, I picked up my friend Nik and her daughter,
Neena, and we went to lunch. We spent a little time chatting
over our meals, as Neena found a million ways to interrupt the
conversation or distract her mother. She is a precocious little
girl, with an abundance of energy. I think she was just a bit
antsy and wanted us to hurry up with our meal so we could drive
to our next destination - the Santa Claus House in North Pole.
I made a pit stop at the North Pole post office
to send off some more packages and cards. I like having my cards
cancelled there - with the telltale North Pole stamp. Especially
I love the Santa Claus House during the holiday
season. I enjoy it at other times of the year too, but during
the holidays it really lifts my spirits. I made a decision not
to decorate my house this year, since I'm flying out to Madison
before Christmas and won't be home until after the new year.
I'm just not in the mood to pull the boxes in from the garage
and put up the tree, etc. without Steve here. It's OK though.
I'm not depressed about it. I'm sad that Steve isn't here for
Christmas, but I'm not sad about not having decorations up.
I can drive around town or go to my friends' houses if I want
to see decorations. It's just too much work this year. However,
I fully intend to enjoy the decorations at the boys' place.
I hope they have a tree. If they don't, I'm getting them one.
:) Even if we have to go to a tree farm and pick out a Charlie
So - getting back to my day - I went to the Santa
Claus house to browse the ornaments and look at the vintage
Santas that stand guard around the store. I love these Santas!
They are tall (more than 70") and high priced (near $1000)
- and totally impractical - but they are really lovely. I also
love the angels, and the Native Alaskan dolls. And there is
a beautiful carousel horse there too.
The Santa Claus House has changed the way children
get to see Santa. At least it's different from the last time
I was there at Christmas. Now, you get a number, and you can
continue to shop. One of "Santa's helpers" calls out
the number over the PA system. This is much more efficient.
The last time I was there, there was a long line of hot, cranky,
youngsters waiting for their turn. Neena had to wait for 4 others
before her turn came up.
Neena wasn't so sure about this man in the red
suit and his wife wearing a matching red suit. Especially when
they started pulling her jacket off of her before they pulled
her up on their lap. Nik and I walked around the perimeter of
the setup, taking photos as they tried to coax Neena to talk
about what she wanted for Christmas. At one point, we disappeared
from sight and poor Neena must have thought her mama had abandoned
her. Her sweet little face went from apprehensive to terrified
in a split second. Even a candy cane didn't help. Why is it
that so many kids are traumatized by Santa? Here are some photos
of Neena that I took:
We drove back to Fairbanks in time to catch the
sun going down. I stopped at the golf course to take a few photos
before driving to the school to pick up Nik's son, Devon. After
dropping them all off, I came home - admiring the subtle colors
of the sunset, and the frosted white colors of the trees. It's
amazing how often I can look around me and think to myself,
"Wow... Alaska is so beautiful!"
I can't believe that Christmas is so near. Once
I get home from visiting the boys in January, I will only have
to wait about 2 months or so before I get the chance to see
Steve for an R&R visit. I can't wait to see his face right
in front of mine. It will be heavenly to hold him again. It's
been 3 months already. I have to admit that the time has passed
quickly. I hope the remaining 9 months do too.
December 3rd - 100 days
December 4th - Brrrrr!
Yesterday, I went downtown
for the Winter Solstice Festival. It was -30F. Needless to say,
there weren't too many people out and about. I took a few photos,
but mostly concentrated on staying warm. I never turned the truck
off - even when I got out of it. I wasn't the only one. This is
the time of year that you will see idling vehicles in parking
lots all over town. It's not the best thing for the environment,
and can cause ice fog when conditions are right. But the alternative
is quite uncomfortable. It's hard to explain just how cold -30F
and below is. It's so cold that the nylon outer part of parkas
and gloves makes the cracking sound of plastic when you move.
There were sleigh rides, but no takers. I don't blame them. I
could barely stand out in the elements long enough to take a few
photos, let alone climb into a wooden sleigh and do a lap around
the park. The few photos I did take weren't the best quality.
I don't know if the cold affected the camera or not, but it certainly
affected the photographer. *grin*
photo of the team of horses was a little too blurry for me in
its original form. So I took it into my photo editing program
(Photoshop) and turned it into a black and white photo. Then I
went one step further and used one of the filters to give it a
watercolor texture. While it's not a traditional photograph, I
do like it. I can envision it on a holiday card or on notecards.
On another note - and before I end this entry - I'd like to send
out a huge THANK YOU to my friend Karen for having me to her house
for lunch on Friday. Not only did I enjoy a delicious salad and
warm soup, but awesome conversation as well. Karen is a loving,
giving, woman who is always a pleasure to spend time with. I'm
so glad we met!
December 8th - HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY DARLING HUSBAND!
"A soulmate is someone who has the locks to fit our keys,
and the keys to fit our locks. When we feel safe enough to
open the locks, our truest selves step out and we can be
completely and honestly who we are; we can be loved for
who we are and for who we're pretending to be.
Each of us unveils the best part of one another.
No matter what else goes wrong around us,
with that one person we're safe in our paradise.
Our soulmate is someone who shares our deepest longings,
our sense of direction. When we're two balloons,
and together our direction is up, chances are
we've found the right person. Our soulmate is the one
who makes life come to life"
~ Richard Bach ~
Happy Birthday, Steve!
I love you MORE!
December 9th - Horses and Dogs: A visit to Jan DeNapoli's
Yesterday, I took a drive out
to Two Rivers to visit with my friend, Jan. I really enjoy visiting
Jan's place and seeing her dogs. Yesterday's trip was an added
treat, as I got to meet the two newest members of her "animal"
family - Tucker and Chief - two geldings who now share Jan's life.
I left the house before noon, as the sun was just beginning to
brighten the day. We've had such warm weather lately (while the
rest of the country freezes), and while I've enjoyed getting out
and enjoying it, I also get nervous when I drive on the hilly
roads around Fairbanks. The snow is melting, and the roads are
icing, but fortunately my drive to Jan's was relatively uneventful.
I would have liked to have visited for longer, but with the sun
going down before 3pm - and my aversion to driving on unfamiliar
roads after dark - I could only stay for a couple of hours. Regardless,
I had a wonderful visit and took a lot of photos.
picture to the left, you can see Tucker (on the left) and
Chief. Tucker is 7 years old and Chief is about 12.
|Jan took the photo
at right of me and Chief. I haven't spent much time around
horses, but Chief seemed to like me. It was nice to get so
close to such a beautiful creature.
||You don't see too
many photos of me on the other side of the camera lens. Jan
snapped this photo of me while I was preparing to take photos
of the dogs.
December 13th - Sudden Fever, Dog Bones, and Birthdays
I got hit with a 24-hour flu
bug again. The odd thing about this illness is that my only symptom
was a fever (102.4) and the muscle aches and weakness that come
with a fever. It hit me suddenly, and I still don't know what
caused it or brought it on. I took a long walk with Rachael on
Sunday. We leashed up the fur kids and headed off on the bike
path. It's been months since we've been able to walk, and having
temperatures hovering at 13F (above zero!) made us both antsy
to get out and get some exercise. We dressed in layers and were
both relatively warm. We walked about 3 miles, but on the return
trip I started feeling extremely fatigued. I attributed it to
walking too far after months of being relatively sedentary.
Later Sunday evening, Rachael and I went to Susan's to watch
Extreme Home Makeover (a regular 'date' for us). Susan made the
most delicious beef stew and cheesy puffy appetizers (I don't
know what they are called!), and a dessert that looked marvelous.
I had a bowl of stew and one cheese puff and I knew I was burning
up. I couldn't wait to get home and crawl into bed.
Steve called about an hour later and I at least got an opportunity
to whine about how lousy I was feeling. Even from thousands of
miles away, his voice soothed me and made me feel loved and cared
for. I'm really glad he called. Although we have the opportunity
to chat and webcam via computer, talking by telephone is a rare
I was asleep by 11pm. With the exception of getting out of bed
to make myself two cups of cocoa and a microwave dinner, I slept
on and off for the next 18 hours. When I got up this morning,
I was fine. I had my energy back, no fever... nothing. It's the
oddest thing I've ever had happen to me. Obviously my body was
fighting something off.
I stayed in today anyway -just to be on the safe side. I got
some much needed cleaning done around the house, took care of
some chores I let slide while I was sick, and worked on a final
batch of Christmas cards. Tomorrow I have a few errands to run,
and I look forward to getting out of the house and getting some
Also, tomorrow is my birthday! I wish Steve was here to celebrate
with me. With our birthdays being so close together, we've always
chosen the weekend that falls between the two dates as our "Birthday
Date Weekend", and go out for a nice, romantic dinner and
maybe a movie on one of the nights. On the other day, we take
advantage of the few hours of daylight to enjoy each other's company
on a drive, music playing, holding hands, enjoying the passing
scenery. I really miss having Steve here to celebrate growing
another year older...together.
I have plans to go out with the girls tomorrow night. There's
a comedy show playing at the Arctic Oasis here on post. We're
planning to have dinner beforehand, since the last time we went
to a comedy show at the Oasis, the kitchen was closed and we had
planned on eating there. I'm looking forward to going out. If
I can't have my husband home with me, having my friends around
me is the next best thing.
other day, I went out running errands with Rachael and Susan (it's
more fun to run errands in a group!) and picked up a huge rawhide
bone for Sedona. I figured I'd take it to the kennel with her
when I drop her off next week. It will give her something to chew
on and get her frustrations out. It's huge, so I'm sure there
will still be plenty left next week. She was so happy to have
this new chew toy and spent hours gnawing on it. The funniest
thing was when she'd carry the bone through the house and bang
it into walls and furniture. At one point, the cat walked nearby
and Sedona grabbed up the bone indignantly and carried it off
into the other room. I can just imagine Airborne wrapping her
little cat jaws around this monstrosity and carrying it off. Then,
last night, in my sick stupor, I heard a huge clanging and banging
down the stairs. I thought that Sedona had fallen down the stairs,
but didn't hear her yelp. I got out of bed and looked and there
was the bone at the bottom of the stairs. I don't have any clue
how she even got it up to the top of the stairs, but it was apparent
that she wanted it on the lower level. Maybe the cat got too close...
Only about a week until I leave for Madison. I'm really excited.
I can't wait to see my kids. I miss them.
December 16th - Birthday Love and Weird Weather
night, in celebration of my birthday, we had plans to go out to
dinner at Boston's, and then meet at the Arctic Oasis for a comedy
show. When we got there, the doors were locked up tight, and there
wasn't a sign posted anywhere that the show was canceled. There
were several other cars in the parking lot who were also there
for the show - people obviously dressed up for a night out - and
they were just as aggravated as we were. I've already called and
left a message of complaint on their answering machine and I'm
going to email the MWR office about the issue.
With our plans turned upside down, we headed back to Boston's
to have a couple of drinks. We had a few laughs, fun conversation
and a good time even though things didn't turn out the way we
planned. A gentleman at the bar bought us two rounds of drinks
when he found out we were military wives of deployed husbands.
He wished us a Merry Christmas on the way out. That was an unexpected
and very nice gesture!
before I headed out with the girls, I got a delivery from the
local florist. Steve sent me a long stem rose, a teddy bear, and
two balloons for my birthday. It wasn't the surprise it could
have been because the florist called ahead of time to make sure
I was home. With the weather here, you can't just drop flowers
between the two doors and call it a delivery. They'd be dead in
a matter of minutes. Likewise, the balloons would be a limp mess
as the volume of the helium inside decreases with the cold. Despite
the fact that the gift wasn't a true surprise, it was exciting
to receive a delivery that was ordered from halfway around the
world. And then yesterday, I got the most beautiful birthday card
from him. The sentiment he penned inside was very special and
brought a tear to my eye. Knowing that he had chosen the card,
and sealed the envelope, and placed it in the mail himself, made
me feel as if we had touched across the miles.
I ran a few errands with Rachael yesterday. We have discovered
just how much fun it is to run mundane errands when someone else
is along. The upside is that we get everything done that we need
to, while having some laughs and conversation. The downside is
that we usually stop and grab something to eat - which isn't real
easy on the wallet or the waistline! On the way home from running
around, huge fat flakes of snow fell from the sky. It was absolutely
gorgeous. It made me feel festive and Christmas-y for the first
time in a long while. I even took a little bit of video and emailed
it to Steve to share the white stuff with him.
And then, this morning, I opened my front door to a blast of
warm air. It was 41 degrees! I watched the drip, drip, drip of
melting snow as it came off the roof. I took advantage of the
warmth - shoveling the driveways and busting up the thin layer
of ice beneath the snow. It's still *nice* out. In fact, right
now it's colder in Philadelphia (and many places in the Lower
48) than it is here.
I had last minute things to take care of today in preparation
for my trip. While I didn't accomplish as much as I'd have liked,
I did get a few things done. Only a few days now!
December 19th - Pastel Sunrises and Lunch with Friends
got to get up every morning
with a smile on your face,
and show the world
all the love in your heart.
~ Carole King ~
As I get closer to leaving for Madison, I've been writing tasks
lists and taking care of last minutes details. Today I had to
run a few errands and I wanted to get an early start. Steve got
online at his 'usual' 9am hour (9pm where he is), which was wonderful.
I love being the last person he talks to before he closes his
eyes at the end of a long, hard day. And he loves being the first
person I talk to before I start a new day.
Despite the late sunrise (and the laziness the morning darkness
causes), I was dressed and out the door as the sky began brightening.
There was fog hanging low over parts of the landscape. The birch
trees were coated in frost. The snow was pure and bright - untouched
in so many places, but for the tiny footprints of snowshoe hares
or ravens. It was a stunning morning.
Instead of heading to my first stop, I drove down to the golf
course here on post. I parked along the side of the road and watched
the sky turn from pale pink to hot pink as the sun appeared over
the horizon. The moon was bright in the morning sky - adding a
magical touch to the pastel palette of colors. I stayed for about
30 minutes, enjoying the morning peacefulness, before heading
off to my first stop.
Later this afternoon, I met Gip and Carmen for lunch at Sam's
Sourdough Cafe. It's been a while since I ate at Sam's, and I'm
going to have to remember to go back again soon. It's near the
university, and I don't drive to that side of town very often
now that I'm not working. But after having lunch there this afternoon,
I'm going to have to make it a point to go back more often. The
food is good and filling. And it's a favorite of the locals. Always
trust the locals!
The three of us shared a lot of laughs and fun conversation.
We talked about everything from growing up in an era when kids
could take off on their bikes, and pedal for miles and miles without
worrying about being abducted, to driving tractor trailers and
pulling down Christmas decorations strung in small towns. I really
enjoyed myself, and having a few hours of respite in the middle
of an errand-filled day was exactly what I needed. To make it
even more perfect, the drive home was under brilliant orange skies
as the sun started heading down. I took the longer way home -
through the downtown area - and thought about stopping to get
photos of the Christmas lights, but wasn't dressed warm enough
to stand outside for any length of time. Maybe I'll do that tomorrow.
Tomorrow, I'm having lunch with another friend. I've also got
to finish getting the house tidied up. On Wednesday, I'm taking
Sedona to the kennel (I'm going to miss my girl!), and then having
dinner with Dianne at Gambardellas. It's been a long time since
I've had dinner there. I'm really looking forward to it. Dianne
is going to be stopping in to check on Airborne while I'm gone.
She works at the hospital here on post, so in the event we have
any really bad weather, she can spend the night here instead of
making the long drive home. I am so thankful that she's going
to stop in and talk to Airborne. We've left Airborne unattended
for almost a week before, but boy does she harbor some resentment
when we get home! At least hearing Dianne moving around in the
house will let her know that she hasn't been abandoned.
I don't know if I'll have a chance to update this journal again
before I leave for Madison, but I fully intend to update while
I'm there visiting. The photos won't have anything to do with
Alaska, but they will have everything to do with two of the people
I love the most in the world - my sons.
December 20th - Alaska Sunsets
After lunch with my friend,
I drove past Birch Hill and continued on the gravel road which
leads to the A-frame homes just off of post. The ice fog was hanging
low over the horizon and the sun was already on its way down.
With the thick fog, the sun looked like a huge orange ball in
the sky, instead of a bright glow. I just had to get photos.
Birch Hill Rd
Birch Hill Rd.
Sunset and Ice Fog
Sun in Ice Fog
Please send good thoughts for a comfortable and uneventful plane
trip tomorrow night. I'll be flying overnight, so I hope to catch
a few hours of sleep (if possible). That way I'll be much more
rested when I get into Madison on Thursday morning. You won't
hear from me again until I get settled with the boys.
December 24th - Happy to see my KIDS!
My flight from Fairbanks to
Madison was relatively uneventful. The flights were only delayed
a little bit, but there were no other problems. I did get a little
stressed out when I got to Minneapolis and saw that my flight
to Madison was canceled! I later discovered that they had to use
a bigger plane and just changed the flight number. I got into
Madison only 15 minutes later than scheduled.
Chris and Becky were waiting for me. It was so nice to see their
faces! Brandon had to work, so we decided to run by Home Depot
(where he works) to see him on the way to the apartment. He was
sitting out in the parking lot taking his lunch break when we
pulled up. I saw a smile stretch from ear to ear when he saw me
in the back seat. I think my smile was bigger than his. It had
been 3 years since I had seen him. The last time I saw him, he
was preparing to go to Iraq with the Marines. He hasn't changed
too much - except for lots of facial hair. I'll never understand
why he wants to cover up such a handsome face with fuzz, but what
do I know? I'm only the mom. *grin*
We waited for Brandon to get home from work and headed out to
have dinner at the Olive Garden. There is no Olive Garden in Alaska,
and I have missed the unlimited salad and breadsticks. What surprised
me most of all was the total bill. After several years in Fairbanks,
I've become accustomed to higher prices when dining out. The tally
for four people was about the same as it would be for two in AK.
I like that my spending money is stretching so much further here.
I'm glad I brought an extra suitcase with me to take home some
Yesterday, I woke up totally refreshed after sleeping for almost
10 hours. Thanks to jet lag and the lack of sleep on the plane,
I had a good rest. Chris had to work, so Brandon, Becky and I
went Christmas shopping. I was continually amazed by how less
expensive things are here as compared to Fairbanks, but I was
also dismayed by the level of chaos that surrounded me. Madison
is congested. There is an obscene amount of traffic - particularly
around the mall - this time of year. People are downright rude
to each other. We almost got hit by an SUV as we were walking
across a parking lot because the driver was speeding. While I
am drawn to certain aspects of being in a big city, at the same
time I long for the more laid back lifestyle in Fairbanks. I do
have to admit, that I'm having fun with all the shopping though!
Today, Brandon had to work. He'll be home shortly and I'll make
dinner for everyone. I've been enjoying the role of 'mom' to my
kids. Tomorrow I am making a Christmas ham and the fixings for
dinner. Gifts will be opened and I'll probably take a lot of photos.
We're going to go exploring downtown after Christmas. I want to
check out the shops and the Capitol Building.
I've taken a few photos to share:
||Here are a few photos
I've taken of the boys, Becky, me and the pets. Pandora is
their boxer, and JiJi is the cat. I'll be taking more photos
I'm sure. I especially love the black & white photo I
took of Becky. I think she looks a bit like Angelina Jolie
in it. :)
December 25th - Christmas Fun
We all slept in this morning.
I got up first and started the coffee brewing. The others followed
within the hour. There was lots of paper flying and huge smiles
all the way around. We had a light breakfast of toasted bagels.
I'm cooking Christmas dinner for us this afternoon. We're having
a ham, mashed 'taters, veggies, rolls, and pie for dessert. Other
than that, we have no plans to do anything but hang out, watch
a movie or two, and relax. Tomorrow, Chris has to work, but Brandon
and Becky are both off. I don't know what the plan is. Not really
much else to add, except to say once again how happy I am to be
with my kids on Christmas.
I took some photos this morning.
Chris, Me, Becky, Pandora,
A little creative editing
JiJi lazing in front of the
Brandon and Chris being attacked
December 27th - Exploring Downtown Madison
Brandon, Becky and I ran some errands and picked up a few last
minute (and Christmas sale) items for some of Becky's family members.
Later, when Chris got home from work, we drove down to State Street.
On the way, we stopped to drive through the Holiday Fantasy in
Lights at Olin-Turville Park. It was very reminiscent of Callaway
Gardens in GA, although not as large. Oversized light sculptures
lined the road that looped through the park.
When we got near State Street, we found a place to park and decided
to walk to Capitol Square and then down the street. State Street
features block after block of specialty shops, art galleries,
gift stores, women's boutiques, ethnic shops, theaters, museums,
restaurants and outdoor sidewalk cafes. It links the Capitol Square
with the University of Wisconsin campus. There are quite a few
bars and restaurants on State Street too. Since we went down after
dark (and after 6pm), the shops and galleries were closed, but
the bars and restaurants were open. We weren't in the mood to
eat or drink - merely to get some night photos - so we walked
a short way. The wind was really picking up by then and we were
all freezing. (I'll say it again - this weather is so much colder
than AK with these strong winds!)
After getting a few photos, we headed home so I could cook up
some spaghetti and meatballs and hot meatball subs with mozzarella
cheese melted on top. The kids were famished and everyone wolfed
down the food. I think they like having me here preparing meals
for them. And I do enjoy doing it too.
I got up with Chris this morning as he was getting ready for
work. Soon after Becky got up and Brandon followed. We're trying
to convince Brandon to let us take the car and go shopping, but
he's worried about us driving in all this traffic because we're
both unfamiliar with the area (Becky hasn't done much exploring
on her own), and Chris called and said the roads are slick in
areas. Since Brandon is playing with his new XBox, the odds of
us getting out of here anytime soon are pretty low. Tomorrow,
everyone has to go back to work. I'm either going to be stuck
here at the apartment, or I'll be driving someone to work so I
can have use of the car. We'll see how agreeable the boys are
|Photos from State Street
(click to enlarge)
Wisconsin State Capitol
100 State Street
Overture Center for the Arts
State Street view toward Capitol
State Street coffee shop
Here is some additional information about the photos above:
- The Wisconsin State Capitol is 284.4 feet high from the ground
floor to the top of the statue on the dome - just three feet
and one-half inch shorter than our Nation's Capitol in Washington
- The exterior of the Capitol is constructed entirely of White
Bethel Vermont granite. The Capitol dome is the largest dome
by volume in the United States and one of the largest in the
world. It is also the only granite dome in the United States.
- The Overture Center for the Arts originally opened in 1928
as the Capitol Theatre. In 1980, after several years of decline,
it reopened as the Madison Civic Center. The 2,251-seat performance
hall is designed and constructed for exceptional acoustics and
an intimate theater experience.
- Opening in March, 1927, the Orpheum Theatre remains the most
intact example in Madison of the early twentieth century movie-vaudeville
Tomorrow night, we're going to see Trans Siberian Orchestra perform
at the Alliant Energy Center. This weekend, I think we're going
to try to go to the free Henry Villas Zoo. Other than that, everyone's
just been enjoying some much needed relaxation.
December 29th - Concerts, Cemeteries, and Cats
Yesterday, I drove Chris to
work, and then took Becky in. This way I'd have Chris' car at
my disposal to do some shopping. I wandered through the mall,
and stopped in JC Penney to look at ball gowns. I really enjoyed
myself going over rack after rack of clothing. There were a lot
of after Christmas sales going on and I parted with some spending
money on some sweaters and shirts that were deeply discounted.
It's been so long since I shopped in places outside of AK and
the prices stun me, because they are so much less than Fairbanks!
No luck in the ball gown department. Everything on the racks was
heavily picked over for holiday affairs. I'm going to try again
tomorrow or next week - perhaps trying out one of the bridal shops
to see if they have any discounted racks.
The concert last night was very good, although our seats were
definitely the 'nosebleed' section and off to the side, as opposed
to a straight on view. I was also disappointed that I couldn't
take my camera. The photos would have been awesome, as the light
show was quite incredible with lasers, snow (fake), spotlights,
fire, etc. It was a long concert (nearly 3 hours); the first half
was re-enactment of their latest CD - "Christmas Eve and
Other Stories" - and the second half was a long jam session.
We enjoyed the second half more than the first, but the light
show was amazing throughout and the musicians were very talented.
Today, Chris was off from work, so we spent the day together
running errands. I mailed off a care package to Steve. Hopefully
it will get there as quickly as the others have been getting there.
It's full of Hickory Farms summer sausage and cheese, etc. He
loves to snack on stuff like that when he's got some time off
and can watch a movie or two.
Chris took me to one of the local cemeteries today. I saw it
from the road when I was driving him into work yesterday and wanted
to visit. I love old cemeteries, with their old marble statues
and large headstones. I wanted to take a few photographs and Chris
asked me if I'd take a few photos of him with his guitar in the
cemetery (it's a 'rock star' thing).
When we got home, I got started on noodles and dumplings for
dinner. I've been promising I'd make it for the kids while I was
in town, and tonight was their lucky night. It was delicious,
and they enjoyed it too. We have so many leftovers in the fridge.
I really hope they eat it before it goes bad. I don't think they
cook at home very much with their work schedules. I was happy
to have dinner waiting for them when they got home from work.
It's good to be with my kids.
We don't have any plans for New Years Eve, which is fine with
all of us. Our only plan is to have a relaxing night at home,
sipping champagne and perhaps watching movies. My kind of night.
I just hope I can stay up until midnight!
Photos taken today:
JiJi enjoying the fire
HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!!
Go to January, 2006
©2005 Susan L Stevenson