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Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Happy Tuesday!

Good morning friends.  Well, I'm still sick but determined to do a few things today.  This is the third day of temp over 101F.  But, I still think it's just a "bug" that has to run it's course.  And my knitting group meets this morning.  :-(  I was really looking forward to that since I haven't been there since the first week in December.

Well, with no further ado, here are my last Christmas 2011 pictures  This was our annual Bible Study Christmas gift exchange and potluck.  These are some of our closest friends in the world.  And before I'm asked, yes, this is at my house!

Some of the "spread" of food.  What is it that is said about church potlucks?  It's the best home cooking in the world!  Roast with all the "fixins", chicken enchiladas, fried chicken, deviled eggs, two kinds of potatoes, homemade salsa.  Yum.
 Barbequed sausages were added to the dessert counter because we ran out of room on the island.  Then we had homemade Russian Creme with Raspberry sauce, cookies and a pumpkin crunch dessert.
 Presents for our swap.  Have any of you done this? Each person has a number and chooses a gift in that order.  They can either choose a new unopened gift or "steal" a gift that they liked from someone else.  The gift can only be "stolen" 3 times and then it stays with that last person.  We do this every year and it's great fun.
 This is Mark.  He was home from Boise College for Christmas.  He's been coming to our Christmas potluck and exchange for about 16 years now.  But, all good things must end.  He's graduating this year and getting married in May.  He'll probably be pastoring a church by next year.  What a sweetheart.
 This is Marks mom Ellen, (on the right) and Kim.  Ellen is our housesitter extraordinaire!  She takes such good care of our baby Chloe and the house when we're gone.  And that's Neal in the back giving them both bunny ears that they're unaware of!
 Lana, Debbie, Mark and Dean.  Lots of good things to eat!  I know, I know, it's not popular to have magnets on the refrigerator anymore,  But, we buy a new one whenever we travel and it's one of our memory makers.  I figure when I get old, it may be the only traveling I do, to look at them and remember.  Also, they hold up our grandchilrens drawings very well!
 Kevin and Lana.  Kevin was legally blind his entire life until a few years.  A miraculous surgery gave him his sight.  Now he even drives! Lana is is wife and a wonderfully spirit filled woman.
 Neal, who is Dennis' best friend.  He's a little out of it on this particular evening.  He just had two wisdom teeth pulled and was taking pain medicine.  He didn't each much!
 Here we're getting all set up for the gift stealing!!!  Oh, that's Jenny on the sofa by Neal, (the left),  She's my best friend in the world.  I tell you, that woman would do anything for me, and yet we're complete opposites in personality.  Isn't it funny how that happens?
 Here's the other side of the group!  Now you've seen my kitchen, dining room and living room.  I don't think I introduced you to Bev.  She's the lady in blue on the right side of the picture.
 And this, my friends is the most stolen gift of the evening.  It's two C.D.'s of all the old Christmas hits.  We put it in the player and listened to the songs the rest of the evening.
My handsome husband, Dennis.  He opened five gifts that night.  Everyone kept stealing them from him.
And that's it!  The last Christmas picture for the year.  We took the decorations down on Friday.  I always like to have the house back to normal by the first of the year.  I'm so happy I didn't put it off until Saturday since I've been sick every day since then. 

Dennis went back to work today and life returns to it's own rythm.  I'm really going to miss him being around all day.  I counted the days and in the last 22 days he's only worked 6!  We were in Hawaii for 8 days and then two 4 day weekends.  I don't know when we've ever had this much time together and I've loved every minute of it.  Of course, he did work on vacation and also from home several hours everyday.  (Thank you ipad and cell phone!) but at least we were together.  One night, we were walking on the beach trying to take in the sunset and his phone rang. He talked for almost 45 minutes to a man from Australia!  He kept telling him that he wasn't in the office and didn't have the information he needed.  He would call his office the next morning and have his secretary fax the information requested.  The guy just didn't "get it".  He kept talking, talking, talking.  And...Dennis missed the sunset, but I thought it was beautiful!  So....he never really gets away but he seems to be fine with that and I get to be with him so it's all okay.

Enough rambling.  I'm off to my recliner and my knitting for awhile and hope I feel better soon!  I hope you all have a wonderful day too.

Blessings,

Betsy

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