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26 December 2010 @ 03:06 pm
Holiday Hijinx  
Well, Holidays were had. :P

Friday, I met up with gflower  and belmikey  for a lovely wonderful lunch. In some ways, the Mexican and conversation was the highlight of the weekend. It was just purely good food and conversation without any familial politics or subtexts. Afterward, I made a guerrilla raid on the Hyvee for a few ingredients I needed for Sunday morning brunch and then hit the road. My original thought was to go up 151 and avoid Milwaukee, which I was sure would be a mess on Christmas Eve. Unfortunately, while we were eating, a front had moved through, bringing freezing rain that made the roadway somewhat friction-challenged. After a few miles, I thought better of it and opted for Interstates and additional traffic volume over dark back roads and questionable salting. Back-tracking and re-starting lost some time, but I was still only about 15 minutes later than I'd planned. Christmas Eve dinner was a quiet affair, just me, my mom, my grandparents, and my Aunt Joan and her husband.

Christmas Eve dinner was tasty and included poppyseed bread and St Nick cookies, which are the priority items in my book. It was strange to have Christmas Eve without an orgy of gift-unwrapping and kids screaming. My aunt and mom had given me their prezzies in advance (some homemade preserves and a fossil plate, respectively) so I just got a pair of gloves from my grandparents. BUT! I put in a request for next year! My grandpa has been doing embroidery the last few years and I asked him if he would embroider one of theattack_laurel 's Elizabethan coifs for me if I traced it our for him and he said yes! It will probably be DMC on linen, since he is not used to working with silk and probably backstitch since that's the stitch he knows (other than cross stitch), but I think this will be made of awesome. :)~ His health has been poor at best in recent years and the decline was really noticeable this time, so I was not sure he'd be up to it. Ugh, depressing thoughts for Christmas.

Christmas morning my mom and I cooked brunch at my Aunt Kate's house. We made eggs, bacon, fruit salad, and scones from scratch. My mom and grandma had never seen microwave bacon, so that was fun to show them. The brunch crew was me, my mom, my grandparents, my brother, and his girlfriend, Steph. There was another round of presents - my brother engraved a Scotch glass for me with a Celtic knot on one side and "Middle Kingdom" on the other. (Ooops, high points for trying, though!) My grandparents did not stay long - my grandpa was obviously weak and tired - it was a two-cane morning. I tried to talk him into a shiny Rollator walker, but he's having none of it - he says that would make him old - but I worry about him on the ice.

My brother and girlfriend hung out with my mom and me for a bit, but then it was on to my dad's family Christmas. My dad was being odd - he thinks his brothers have not been paying enough attention to him, so he volunteered to take a shift on Christmas, even though he was not scheduled to work. Then, even when he got home in plenty of time to come by, he dithered and made excuses and otherwise evaded joining us. When he called the fourth time in two hours to have the same conversation about how he couldn't make it and when was I coming over to his place, I was not particularly sorry to have missed the call. and I just texted him back to either show up at Christmas or wait for me to call and say I was heading over. I was having a great time at the family Christmas, actually. Usually, the Hetzel Christmas has been about the men watching football and the women cooking and catching up, since Christmas is pretty much the only time of year I see that side of the family. However, both of my older cousins have gotten married in recent years and I really like both of their wives. One is a teacher and the other is a geeky scientist, so we had a lot of fun. Plus, most of the cooking this year was done by my cousin Kirk, who has been doing BBQ competitions and did a really wonderful beef roast and smoked turkey. Om nom nom! There was a giant pile of mashed potatoes and my aunt's chocolate covered cherries and my world was complete. However, by the time folks started to leave and I called my dad, he was apparently already in bed and said we would do Christmas later. So, without needing to make that stop, I headed back to Madison and was home before too late.

Today is relaxing, reading, and probably doing a little work. It should be work on WW plans, but it may be finishing warping the loom. We'll see where my motivation lies. Or not. :P  (ETA: And the answer was "not." :P I made a good dinner and that was as productive as I got.)

Happy Holidays, everyone!
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jtdiiijtdiii on December 26th, 2010 09:11 pm (UTC)
You could gift him with the needed silks... He might like playing with them.

In any case it will be a gift of love and thus priceless.
eithni: sofonisbaeithni on December 26th, 2010 09:19 pm (UTC)
I'd considered that, but he's quickly slipping into dementia and I'm afraid that learning to work with a new medium will be more frustrating than fun. :/
jtdiiijtdiii on December 26th, 2010 11:10 pm (UTC)
Ahhhhh, OK,makes sense.

In the mean time enjoy the time you have with him, especially while he is lucid. My grandmother had Alzheimer's and it can be frustrating. Support and love him and enjoy every minute you get.
Amanda Marksdottir: Vogueragnvaeig on December 26th, 2010 11:33 pm (UTC)
I think the embroidery idea is a great suggestion. Even if he only partially completes it, you'll have a wonderful keepsake.
eithni: sofonisbaeithni on December 27th, 2010 04:57 am (UTC)
Exactly. Even if only part gets done, I can make a sweetbag.