Monday, November 26, 2007


Yesterday was a semi-ordinary Sabbath. We went to church, which was a skeleton of its usual self, since at least half the congregation is either a student or an employee of Penn State--they all went home to whereever they're from (admittedly, a large portion went to Utah). You add that to the usual number who go out of town for Thanksgiving and you're left with, primarily, the townies with older children. Still, we had a good morning of church, picked up Gramma Gaye and headed home to decorate the tree. We made good progress until we got to the lights and discovered that exactly half of EVERY light set was out. Now, I don't know if you've tried to replace lights in your mini-light set in the past few years, but they make it terrifically hard now. You're pretty much just supposed to toss the set and buy new ones. Last year I fought this and it took five trips to Target to get all the outdoor features with mini-lights working. (To complicate things, there are different sizes of bulbs in those mini-lights and then you try to match colors--only they're out of the color you need in the size you need . . . .) I had learned from my experience, sort of, so this year we decided to just run to Target to get new lights. Because this was supposed to be a day with the family, we decided to all go.

What we learned was the wisdom of the council to avoid shopping on Sundays. Especially Sundays right after Thanksgiving with all the students coming back. Especially those conditions with Target. It was insane and took far longer to get out of there than we had anticipated. The only good that came of it was that we were successful in getting the gold mini-lights that we wanted.

Years ago we had a tree with a red and gold theme. We'd collected ornaments and a beautiful lighted angel tree topper and something like 8 strands of gold lights in there. Then in California rats got in it and ruined it all. The tree, the ornaments, the lights--it was all contaminated. Just disgusting. So we threw it all away. Over the last four or five Christmases, we rebuilt our collection, but we had given the "eclectic collection with multi-colored mini-lights" theme a run and since we had to replace all the lights this time around, we decided to take the opportunity to go back to red and gold. The extra ornaments went back into storage. In a future year we'll add a second tree for downstairs and give it the eclectic collection with multi-colored mini-lights theme.
In the meantime, the red and gold tree looks beautiful. We'll get a picture up at some point this holiday. The Christmas Tree skirt went traveling this year and I won't have it back for a bit yet.

Anyway, around 6 or so, Gramma Gaye went home, so I pulled out one of my new cookbooks to read:

I put my knitting in my lap and worked away at a sock for probably five rounds or so as I read--I made it through most of the introduction before completely passing out. I woke up at 9pm just in time to watch the ending of a movie with Ben Stiller as a nightwatchman at the Museum of Natural History. Then we all put on pjs and went to sleep. I woke up this morning feeling pretty well rested.

(Oh! Never fear on the buttons. I found them in one of the places I'd already looked twice. So now I just have to stay awake in my green chair long enough to get the knitting done!)

Today should have been a day full of workwork, but the kids don't go back to school until tomorrow and my tummy was a little off, so I paid the bills, got some work done, and otherwise entertained myself with other errands. I got more wood pellets and bought groceries for dinner and for the kids' lunches this week. Now I'm going to try to finish up the workwork I was supposed to get done earlier today so tomorrow I'm well positioned to start a final four-day push to write two lessons in the amount of time it normally takes me to write one. I'm also hoping to get the toe and top done on two different socks tonight. That would finish one pair of Christmas socks and get me to the half-way point on a second pair. That's what I was supposed to do last night instead of napping in the green chair :)

Jo, if you're reading this, please email me. I have questions about your grocery bill on this new way of cooking you're doing for your family.

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