Sandy and family arrived on Tuesday night. Before even saying "hello" or a hug and kiss, Victoria (age 7) was quick to report that her dad had been stopped for speeding. Greg only got a warning, but would rather have settled for the ticket if he could have avoided Victoria checking up on his speed for the next 4 hours!
Sandy and I picked Mindy up from the airport at 8:45 a.m. on Wednesday and went straight to the mall for their annual boot shopping. Somewhere along the line, Butch told the girls they could buy new boots over the Thanksgiving holiday and voila' a new tradition was born. It's like that in our family---do something once and it becomes a tradition. Steph wasn't able to be with us as some people have to work, but we didn't forget her.
We met Butch for lunch at the Cheesecake Factory which got off to a rocky start. We were to meet at 11:45. Sandy and Mindy were waiting for Butch. I met up with them at 11:50, so we decided to go in. We were just being seated when Butch called and wanted to know where we were. Somehow, we missed each other and he was already seated---and mad that we were late! There really was no explaining that we weren't late.
Then I made the unfortunate mistake to ask about Mindy's car (which has been in the shop for nearly a month). Come to find out, what was only a battery problem at the beginning, turned out to be burned wires and other expensive stuff because Mindy and/or her friends hooked it up wrong to "jump" it. Right away, Mindy said we were ruining her lunch---and you don't mess with Mindy's food!!
We ended up having a nice lunch after which Sandy remarked, "looks like dad is crabby too when he's hungry". That's about the closest we've ever come to seeing Butch actually hungry!!
We played poker---I staked Mitchell for his first time. After about an hour, I took out the $2.00 I started him with. He had about $5.00 left and immediately quit. It was okay to gamble when he thought it was with MY money.
Dinner at the club was fabulous---boiled shrimp, broiled scallops, prime rib along with turkey and all the trimmings. Always fun with the family.
Then it was home to watch those Titans! I guess we've officially become one of those families who plan their social lives around the football game. The first time I ever encountered this was in the late 80's when I invited Jack and Connie to go to dinner. She turned me down---Connie style---apologetically---due to a UT game. Since I did not grow up in a house where anyone watched football, I had never heard of planning your social life around football games.
Anyway, back to the family. We played more games---put this one on your Christmas list---Loaded Questions. Sandy brought it last Christmas. It is an absolute riot. We had friends over this summer to play. One of the questions was, "What is something you say all the time"? Jack still swears that he says "hi ya' kids, hi ya' " everyday at the office. They must think he's strange! We sure did---or---old---as he said it was from some kids show when he was little. No one had ever heard of it. Jack is entertainment all by himself! He's still trying to live down Charades from 20 years ago!
One of my favorite lines from Loaded Questions this time was---in response to a question that Steph decided NOT to ask---"Who would you NOT want to see naked"? Victoria was quick to say "grandpa"! Truly, it's a laugh a minute and great for a crowd. Great game for kids too---aside from the naked question, they are all pretty tame.
Mindy had to leave on Friday morning which put a bit of a damper on our fun. Butch, Steph, Mindy and I went to Cracker Barrel for breakfast before taking her to the airport. The Lapps' were with the Lapps's. Steph and I went to the movies and saw Australia (very good, but long---2 hrs. 40 min.) and then The Boy in the Striped Pajamas (also very good, but a downer). I like to stay gone on Black Friday so that my "ladies" who decorate the outside and stairwell can come. I wouldn't be caught dead in the stores---unless it is 4 a.m., but no one wants to go with me that early!!
We did our decorating yesterday. It just about kills me every year to do it all in one day, but I just want to get it done. Butch and I got along great---nary an argument---even with the Christmas music on all day.
After church, Butch finished up trimming the live tree today while I wrapped some presents and did laundry. Butch did have to come to Steph's rescue as she had a clogged sink. She had a murder mystery/dinner party last night. It was a huge success. Her menu:
stuffed artichokes, pumpkin soup, bourbon pecan pork tenderloin, sweet potatoes, hot fruit (Connie's recipe) asparagus and chocolate mousse for dessert. The clogged sink---who tries to put artichoke leaves down the garbage disposal anyway?
Butch is back to maintaining two houses. That's okay, he's pretty good at it. And he fixed our hoosier mailbox.
I guess that about wraps it up. Say a prayer that my oven part is delivered this week! I've missed my oven---well at least the clock! You never realize how much you use something until you don't have it! And now I'm stressed about that d**n cookie exchange that sounded like such a good idea a few weeks ago before I had oven problems and might have to bake at Steph's when everybody knows it's better to cook in your own kitchen where you know where everything is!
Happy decorating!! I'll post some family photos later.