Friday, December 31, 2010

Christmas in North Dakota - Pt. 3

Wednesday brought a new adventure for the kids. Ice Skating! While there were skates to fit the two oldest kids, little AJ had to endure skates too large for her tiny feets. It's strange watching little kids learn to skate, struggling to skate, when I have hard time remembering a time when I didn't know how to skate! So, my brother held AJ while Dad, H, and C, made a chain gang with the kids in the middle, and we had a blast!

Christmas in North Dakota - Pt. 2

Tuesday of Christmas week meant sledding. Off to the Magic City hill to demolish some powder!

Although there were several fantastic runs down the hill, this one just had to be shared.

Everything started off well.

But something happened along the way.

Where are they going?

At least they're still making forward progress...

Almost made it.

And... Done. Finally. Backwards, but done. At least it eliminated snow in the face. Maybe? :)

I couldn't resist throwing this one up here too!

And back up the hill for more...

Christmas in North Dakota - Pt. 1

After a long autumn it was wonderful to be reunited with family at home in North Dakota. Between the siblings and in-laws and nieces and nephew we shared mom and dad's B&B ( between eleven people. It was amazing! Nothing beats sleeping in for a week in a hundred year old mansion with two feet of snow outside and a never-ending supply of home-made goodness flowing from the kitchen. Although I didn't take as many pictures as I would've liked, I got a handful that documented the week of bliss.

Amtrak served as our sleigh, but Santa certainly wasn't driving. Instead, we had an train conductor that was less human and more evil elf (a terrible troll, an ugly ogre - all three aptly describe his look and/or attitude, but evil elf fit the metaphor). Additionally, our train was delayed by three hours so we got home late, but we did get home. Underscore home. Sigh of relief.

Before the siblings arrived we had an informal open house for all our ND relatives and friends who were unable to be at our wedding back in June. Naturally, some people who did make it to the wedding decided to crash the open house - Ben... Aleks... :)

Here's a pic before the festivities began of Amy and I in front of the main tree (there were six!)

It was great to see so many relatives and family that I never get to see anymore and that Amy had never met. I won't lie, though, I definitely cracked open the old photo albums the night before to brush up on some relatives that I hadn't seen in a while. Fortunately, there was only one or two people that came through the door that gave me a panic while I whirled my mental rolodex for their vitals - name, relation, profession...

Things really kicked into high gear once the three-pack arrived. And by three-pack I mean my five year old niece, my three year old nephew and my two year old niece. The youngest promptly found Harrison the bear and a two-year-old size chair and planted herself in the hallway. What a cutie!

The next day we were greeted with 12 inches of snow! Woot! Dig out the tractor and attach the snowblower! Pull on the snow pants and make a few angels! Climb aboard with Papa and take a ride on the tractor!

So many pictures, so many stories. More in the next post!

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Nothing to write about...

Lately, I've been getting in touch with my hypocrisy. It's a short story, and goes something like this...

(cue dream music/bubble sound effects)

Tis the start of day. Breakfast cereal in hand it's time to check in on the world.

*click* (open internet window)
*click* (check news)
*Command T* (open new tab)
*click* (check facebook)


*click* (select drop down menu of favorite blogs)
*click* (check WA family's world)

Disappointment. Oh, man... No new stories about the niece and nephew. No new pictures to tide me over till the holidays. Oh wait! Yep, there's one. A three-sentence story. Phew! Better than nothing, right? Maybe it's part of some attempt at concise writing. Effort noted, but I also love the good long stories that give you a crick in the neck from reading the laptop screen too long. But, you know, it's your blog. Don't let me cramp your concise style. Just cause I'm a professional rambler... *awkward cough* ....

*click* (select drop down menu of favorite blogs)
*click* (check NY family's world)

Let down. How long has it been since their last post? For as cute as my niece is they have to have plenty of stories they could put up, right? hmmm.... I suppose I could call more often too... Well, in the mean time, let's watch that awesome video again. *click* WHAT?! The link still isn't working? How can I inform them that the link isn't working without giving away the fact that I check their blog way to much? ...
No answer.
Deep Sigh.

Pause and regather.

*click* (check National Review online for the latest op-ed piece on how screwed up the world is)

[note: I am now just sitting, waiting for the news to refresh, finishing my cereal]

Oh yeah! Email! Maybe someone wrote me!

*click* (open mail)
*click* (refresh inbox)

scroll.scroll.delete.delete.highlightentiresection - delete. Oh! One from Mom! Phew! What a relief. Oh! And another email from that one thing that sends me updates all the time that I always say I'm going to read but never do. They put so much effort into sending an encouraging message but because I have an appetite for family blog their heartwarming message just falls short. delete.


Finish cereal.


Contemplate another bowl and one more round of internet...

Yes to bowl, no to internet...


Okay, so somehow that just became a story about morning internet drama. Sorry, I got distracted by the onomonopia of typing *click* (oh, i did it again :)

Anyways, the point was to illustrate the way I can't wait to see if something new is posted by my family, but I never post anything myself. Blatant hypocrisy. I doubt they do what I do, but maybe sometimes they check my blog and say, "Really, nothing since May?" Or, "Why doesn't he ever post pictures, we still haven't seen what their apartment looks like?"

So, to my family and friends who hopefully don't check my blog nearly as often I check theirs, thanks for bearing with me. Maybe I'll learn to write more, or recognize to a greater degree the blogability of my life. Then again, maybe my lift ain't all that blogable and I should just give up. On blogging - not life.

Note: Thanks for blogging! This wasn't meant to be a subtle attempt to guilt you into writing more. So don't read it that way. Of course, if you do decide to blog more, know that I'll know, and know that my mornings will be happier :)