Sunday, December 25, 2016

Merry Christmas to all

And so dear Blog World, I wish a merry Christmas to anyone who stumbles across my blog.  Today is the big day that people prepare for and look forward to, and then poof – it is done.  Well yes, it is mostly done, except I did not send out any Christmas cards, and I didn’t really finish decorating the house.  But it’s all OK.  Next year, should we be lucky enough to live that long, I will get another chance to do it right.

So, I kicked off six courses for University #2 on December 5th, while at the same time doing finals week at University #1 and wrapping up final grades along with end-of-course statistics and reports for accreditation purposes. It was a busy week, and then I made a quick trip to Washington.  Emily got impatient and put up our Christmas tree, set out our little nativity scene, and decorated the mantle.  It was nice that she did all that for us.  When I had a little time the next week, I put up lights on our rhododendron bushes outside, and we baked and decorated cut-out cookies together.  That is something we did together when my girls were growing up - a tradition. We might make another batch this week before Erin goes back to Louisville.

To remind us...

Sugar cookies made by Emily and me
Erin and Emily celebrated their 21st birthday this month.  It doesn’t seem possible that 21 years have gone by so quickly.  The girls were not home together this year, so we celebrated Emily’s birthday on her birthday, and then celebrated Erin’s a few days later when she came home.  Instead of a cake, Emily requested a pile of donuts – and she wanted 21 candles on them.  It was quite a feat to light 21 candles before the donuts became covered with melted wax.  Erin asked for a red velvet cake with cream cheese icing…with dinosaurs on top.  We had two dinosaurs, but took one off before lighting up the candles – two on one side and one on the other, sort of representative of 21 – she thought 21 candles would be excessive.

Donut birthday cake - we're taking photos while the candles melt
Erin's red velvet cake with dinosaur(s)

Sarah came home Christmas Eve, so that was fun.  To have my three girls together with me is the best present I could ever wish for. I hope this year we are able to plan better and take a vacation together. Emily is hoping to get an internship over the summer and take the GRE, so we will have to wait and see how that does or doesn’t work out.  Sarah may have an opportunity come up as well.  Erin might move to a new apartment or start a new job…so we’ll have to consider that in our plans.  I think we will visit Philadelphia if we can make it work. 

I made a pecan pie for Someone this week. He loves pecan pie, and Someone’s mother always gifts a large bag of pecans to us every Thanksgiving.  We celebrated Christmas last night with Someone’s family.  Everyone was there except for Someone’s daughter (Katie), who drove in today with her boyfriend. It is nice when everyone gets together, but it’s a lot of people and noise in one house.  At least Someone’s parents have a large house, so it’s tolerable.  And now, another generation is on the way.  Katie is pregnant…we will become grandparents this summer if all goes as planned.

Someone's pecan pie - cooling
Someone's parents and all the grandchildren, except for Katie

Tomorrow is supposed to be unusually warm and sunny.  Someone and I are playing golf with Someone’s dad.  I haven’t played since early November, so it will be a treat to get out.  With winter underway, any day that is warm enough to play is a gift.  The Farmer’s Almanac predicts a hard winter is in store for us, and they are usually right. We will see.      


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