Well it's been about a month now, hasn't it? One of my longer dry spells. There's been a lot going on. Besides going and getting mother-in-law for Thanksgiving and taking her back the next weekend (well, Sunday/Monday).
We had the whole gang for Thanksgiving. Mother-in-Law, Brian, Kristin, & Trenton as well as Kevin and Kristin's brother Brian. There's no more Angela. She's out of the picture for Kevin, but he's moving on.
Went out to Mom & Dad's the Saturday after Thanksgiving. Vicki stayed behind because Kevin was staying at our house for a few days. Dawn was the only wife to make it out, but she hangs with the boys pretty well.
Vicki couldn't take Monday off, so that left me to take mother-in-law home on my own. The trips up and back were both uneventful... just the way you want them to be.
And of course there was lots of seeing Trenton as we're pretty convenient and very willing babysitters.
Ryan, Kristie, Vicki, and I went down to Silver Dollar City to see the lights and their version of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol" ... my favorite Christmas story. Kristie scored seriously discounted tickets both for admission to the park and the show. The show was excellent. I was expecting some not-much-better-than-local-talent show, but this was really top notch from the voices to the stage direction and coreography and "special effects". Well done!
Silver Dollar City is seriously lighted up for Christmas, and there's a big light show on the main square involving a hundred foot Christmas tree and various large deciduous trees around it all covered in lights and timed to the Christmas music. It was enjoyable just to walk up and down the lanes soaking up the atmosphere. It was even cold. Matter of fact we may have been slightly underdressed for it.
We left from there for Eureka Springs, Arkansas. The San Fransisco of the Ozarks (in more ways than one). We typically go down there in the fall after a camping trip, with Geraldi's Pizza, Sonya's Leather, and Ermilios pretty much the only things on our hard agenda. We go up and down the streets looking at shops and don't typically buy much.
I think we spent more than we ever have this time around. Several presents for people ... I got a couple of walletts, a baby book for Trenton, some home decoration items, a few things for the kitchen. It was fun. We stuck to the Mud St. Cafe for breakfast. Excellent coffee and unbeatable breakfasts. Nice atmosphere, too. (and good cheesecake). We skipped dinner Friday night because we were too full from the incredible Geraldi's Pizza for lunch, and we went to Ermilio's for dinner. Ermillios is a very good Italian restaurant down there. We highly recomend it.
Friday night was the Eureka Springs Christmas Parade -- which everyone in town seemed excited about. It was a nice small-town parade. We were very near the beginning of the route, and we were bombarded with candy. Both couples took home a pretty good sized bag of it. (Home being the Chantilly Lace Cottage, not much more than a block away).
We tend to walk everywhere when we're down there. We probably need to because of what we eat when we're down there. There are lots of good places to eat in Eureka springs, but we definitely have our favorites.
After dinner Saturday we went on a horse & carriage ride around the upper historic loop looking at Christmas lights. Not a ton of them. But we drove around town afterward and downtown was really lit up nicely as were many of the residental streets.
We came home on Sunday via Lamberts -- kind of customary, the Home of the Throwed Rolls. And wonderful rolls they are. Hot and fresh.
Kristin dropped Trenton off right after we got home. Her grandmother had dislocated and cracked a shoulder and she had had quite the long weekend. Trenton watched us unpack and we hung out by the fireplace until Kristin was ready to take him home.
Finally this weekend we got a late start getting the Christmas decorations up. I did a lot of work outside, racing the weather. It was 50 degrees in the morning, heading for a high of 60, with a very strong cold front on its way. I put up the roofline lights. Then Vicki wanted lights on the bushes & tree out front. But I needed to trim the firebush first. So I got out my chainsaw I've had for at least two years and have never used, and cranked it up. Trimmed that bush, and the hedges with it, and went around back of the house where there were some aggressive saplings and brambles taking over the yard that I've been meaning to get after for a while.
Got that done and went back to the lights. Put white net lights on two bushes and then green ones up the trunk and 4 brances of the redbud. Very dark clouds were on the horizon. Daryl said they felt someone turn the freezer on around Boonville on their way home, but they outran it to Columbia. 10 minutes after I got done with the lights, the rain hit and it dropped 10 degrees to 50. Then 40. Then 30. Then 25. It was below 20 before we got to bed, with sleet and ice. And when we got up this morning it was 7. A 53 degree swing in about 15 hours.
Tonight we finish the decorations. Hope you get yours up. Merry Christmas!