Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Our Road Trip to Babbitt and Adding Another Phone to Our Plan

My Christmas shopping is nearly done as are some gifts we’ve been putting together for family and friends. It’s been somewhat of a low-key holiday season for us to this point with not much break in our routine with the exception of a quick trip to see Tammy's folks this past weekend...more on that later.

We helped host a neighborhood house-hop, or what some would refer to as a progressive dinner, a couple Saturdays ago. There were twelve couples involved visiting four homes. The first three of four homes on the list served different main course dishes along with various appetizers and side dishes. The last home (ours) was the desert house. Thankfully we had the help of the other two couples in our group to help host. Tammy made a chocolate fondue with all sorts of different fruits and stuff to smother in chocolate…I think marshmallows were my favorite. Tammy had to work during the day so I was in charge of getting the house looking nice and making sure there would be enough alcohol. Thanks to Mark across the street for bringing more beer than I’d imagined they would drink. We were a host house two years ago when our basement was still the color of cement so it was nice to open it up to everyone and to see them enjoying themselves down there. I’d have loved to have played some darts with the guys but it wasn’t meant to be…maybe next year. Everyone headed for home around 1:00am and it was time to hurry Tammy off to bed as she had to be up in 3 hours for work the next day. I stayed up another hour and cleaned as I didn’t like the idea of waking up to a mess.

We finally got our Christmas cards out in the mail last weekend. We were going to send them earlier but Tammy thought it would be nice to include a photo of us. 27 attempts later and this is our final result. Toby’s look pretty much sums it up.

We took a trip to Babbitt and Tammy’s folks this past weekend to celebrate Christmas with them. I could only stay one day but it was nice to get away and see them. We took both vehicles because Tammy and Rachel were staying up there a few extra days. Rachel, Allie and I rode together while Tammy and Toby followed in the Saturn. It was a snowy trip up there (streaming or YouTube video) once we got near Duluth with the lake effect snows. Rachel brought her violin along so she could play Christmas music in church on Sunday as the people were taking their seats and during the offering.

Being up in Babbitt is always a relaxing time. There aren’t many distractions, especially this time of year when it’s typically extremely cold and not much to do outside. We usually manage to do one or two puzzles and play some board games. Speaking of games; Tammy brought a new game along with us to play…this game is a hoot. It’s called, Snorta. Have any of you played this? We were laughing…I mean serious belly laughing playing this. It’s like playing ‘war’ with cards except that when you have a match with another player you have to be the first person to make the sound of their chosen animal. You can add a wrinkle to it by making up an unusual sound which the others have to mimic. Take my word for it, it’s a lot of fun.

Allie and Toby found some good pathways through the house to chase each other. Those little guys have a lot of energy they need to bleed off every few hours.

I got back home Saturday afternoon and got a timely call from Brent just as I was approaching the Burnsville mall on the way into town. He told me to stop by and he’d help me with the purchase of our new cellphone plan. Ours expires this month and we’ve decided to add a phone for Rachel as her main Christmas gift this year with the most important feature of the plan being unlimited text messaging for her. There was a plan which offered 500 text messages monthly for about $6 but for an additional few dollars she could have unlimited messaging. You would think that 500 would be enough but once I did the math (a little less than 17 messages per day) I knew she could easily run out of days before the month was over. It’s a big deal with kids her age so we didn’t want to disappoint her and stifle her messaging ability. So, her phone has a full charge and is waiting to be opened Christmas Eve. Needless to say she’s very excited to be getting her own phone and would love to have it yesterday. I did break down just a bit and give her her new phone number so she can share it with her friends.

We’re planning on getting together at Mom’s on Christmas Eve for dinner although Rachel won’t be with us as she’ll be at her dad’s. Tammy and I will probably attend one of the later services at Hosanna after we leave Mom’s. Here’s hoping you all have a very blessed Christmas and are able to spend time with your family.

I’ll leave you with some Christmas music...It's Christmas Time, by City on a Hill.

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