Some quick bullets
1. Spent Christmas with Lisa's family. Our present was digging out her brother's room for her parents. He will be moving back home with his parents at the end of January and the task looked so overwhelming that Lisa and I offered to make it livable. It was grueling. Going through your own stuff is hard enough, but an entire room stuffed with Other People's Things is really tough, both physically and psychologically. I told Lisa that I was her "dumb muscle." I could carry and lift and clean and stack...but I didn't know what was sentimental and what was crap.
I'm glad we did that leg of the trip first...because we got it over with and could enjoy the rest.
2. Spent a day with my cousin and her family in Chino. SO great to hang out with Debie and her kids and see my cousin Dean and Marilee as well. It's funny...growing up they were the "scary and mean cousins." Time really mellows people (and perceptions) out.
3. Driving to Utah was tough. In past years we have a pit stop in St. George and stay with my high school friend Alison but as she was going to be out of town we decided we'd do the trip from So Cal to SLC in one go. Unfortunately I awoke ill at Debie's..which necessitated a few emergency pullovers. Did some things on the side of the road I hope to never repeat.
4. Arrived in SLC and spent a night at Combs' townhouse. Thank you Combs!
5. The next day went on to my parents where Mark had already arrived. Nice to see him. He's been growing his hair out and it's juuuust long enough to pull MOST of it back in a pony tail. Not sure how long he's wanting it to go.
Parent's anniversary. Happy Anniversary folks!
Suzanne came out for a little bit with her kids and her photographer friend to scout the place out and check the lighting levels for the photo shoot the next day.
Lisa wanted to sleep in the trailer. I was a little wary as it was 13-17 degrees F outside but Lisa pointed out that if it was really unbearable we could sneak back in and this way we could see just how well her insulating job was. I was pleasantly surprised. When we first got in the memory foam was as hard as a rock...seriously, you could rap your knuckles on it but it quickly warmed up (and we started sinking down.) The coldest part of my body was my poor nose.
Awoke to snow! Big storm moving through all day. Heh. And we were going to take photos outside.
Mom and Lisa got haircuts. Lisa went SHORT. Very cute. Lisa and I did some quick erranding. Picked up Annette's present and a gift card from Home Depot for my parents.
Lawrence and Annette made it out, hooray!
Several texts from Suzanne saying she was running late because the snow really WAS horrible.
Brent showed up which was a relief.
Finally all 5 Atwood siblings under the same roof. It's a rare occurrence...more than a blue moon.
Atwood kids and spouses went outside and despite the snow, wasn't too bad. We did shots of the kids and the spouses, some shots of the kids, shots of the boys, shots of the girls, Lisa and I and Lawrence and Annette. Can't wait to see them, the photographer is unbelivably good at his job.
Inside the house did a shot of everybody with the parents and then some shots of just my dad and mom. Very cute.
Brent took off...had some tattooing to do. Had a family dinner...very fun. We busted out the "A" glasses which get used approximately once a year.
It seems as quickly as the house filled up, the house emptied out. Suzanne took off with her kids and things got much, much more quiet
That night played a lot of chickenfoot and a round of "Bang," one of Lawrence's favorite games.
More snow. Dad took Mark to the airport.
The rest of us stayed in, it was awful out. A lot of chickenfoot, bang, eating, surfing on the internet, talking, me working on my 101 goals...it was a good day to snug in.
I wasn't feeling well that night so I slept on the couch in front of the pellet stove. Lisa slept on the chair. It turned out to be a good decision as I had to get up 3 or 4 times in the night and sit wearily upon the toilet as my innards churned.
Went and did much erranding with Lawrence and Annette and Lisa. Kohls's for Annette where she got some new pairs of jeans. Saw the Mortons (always nice to see Luann and Val,) went to Costco (yay! They had the peppedew/jalapeno Fancy Yancy cheese!) eat lunch at Chipolte (Lisa and I split a veggie burrito) Lawrence got a haircut, we roamed in Barnes and Noble ( I started getting engrossed in Julie Andrew's autobiography of her early career.)
The initial plan was to head north, see Brent's tattoo shop and then go to Harbor Tool and Freight where Lisa and I needed some things but LMA and Annette decided they wanted to see their friends in So. Jordan instead. We drove down, dropped them off...ran our HT&F errands and then went to the Army Navy surplus (I bought a little ammo bag which will work wonders for a figure drawing kit.)
Back home we sat around playing chickenfoot and Bang. Yelled Happy New Years and went to bed. I thought a lot about the last 10 years.
LMA and Annette went off to the airport. I got up around 8:30...was up for an hour and then went back to the trailer for a nap. Got up at noon (good nap!) and started packing.
We left the house around 3...stayed around long enough to give my dad a hug...went to Suzannes, said goodbye to her and the kids, picked up Lisa's present and then went off to Combs' place again.
Not much happening here...a lot of talking, surfing online, laughing, looking at Vibram's Five Fingers shoes (think I am going to be getting myself a pair.)
Now I need to go to bed because TOMORROW...we head back home across I-80. Helllooooo long haul through Nevada!
Happy New Year's y'all!