Post-Holiday Report

2016-01-08 14.05.49I love Sundays—especially during football season.

I love going to church no matter what the season. But in the afternoons, when football’s on, I’m guaranteed a nap.

Today, though, Craig was happy about the Steelers’ win last night and didn’t care a whole lot about the afternoon game today, so we went for a walk instead of falling asleep in front of the TV.

It had been raining off and on all day, so we were prepared to get rained on. But instead, we experienced a few flits of snow… and a whole lot of wind. But we stayed dry, so that made us happy.

2016-01-08 13.59.55We’ve been walking fairly regularly this winter. Friday we went to the Paw Paw Tunnel again, hoping to see some fun ice formations, since it’s been a little colder the past few days. We had a nice hike to the tunnel, went over top of the mountain, and then back through the tunnel in the homeward direction. Stopping to take a photo or two along the way.

Then we explored the Town Creek Aqueduct at another nearby stop along the same C & O Canal Trail, near which we discovered another interesting trail that we might check out another day. (Took no pics there.)

school house kitchen
School House Kitchen (photo from their Facebook page)

Continuing our exploration, we meandered into a little burg called Old Town, where one of the first things you see is a school. Except it’s not—it’s a repurposed school building. One of the new purposes for the building is a restaurant, the School House Kitchen located in the original school lunchroom. In another area, they restore antique cars.

Craig and I loved the concept and decided to stop for lunch. We didn’t expect much, and so weren’t disappointed. Basically, it was the quality of food you’d find in a school cafeteria. But it was 2 pm, we’d walked up an appetite, and it was a fun place to stop. We wish the owners success!

2016-01-08 14.05.20None of this, however, is worth writing home about. I only mention it because: 1) it’s been over a month since I blogged; and 2) it’s a good excuse to use some of the nice pics I took.

Since my last post, we’ve had Christmas and New Year’s Day – but no snow. I was thinking recently of The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, in which, thanks to a spell cast by the white witch, it was always winter in Narnia, but never Christmas. The way the Christmas hype begins in October but the temperatures this year felt more like April than December, it occurred to me that this season, it was always Christmas but never winter.

2016-01-08 14.06.41-2
I don’t recommend climbing these stairs.

Despite wet, gloomy weather without so much as a whiff of winter, we had a lovely Christmas. We drove to the Cleveland area on Christmas Day, where we visited with Craig’s family at his sister’s house before taking everyone out to eat at an Asian buffet that evening. When I say “everyone,” that includes not only Craig’s whole family but also our oldest and youngest daughters (Emily and Rustie, respectively), whom we don’t often get to spend time with. After dinner we went to the Holiday Inn where we met up with Shelley and her family, who’d recently arrived from Virginia, and watched the kids swim in the pool for a while before bed.23847923796_fe2ed0c502_n

Shelley & Scott recently acquired (if that’s the right word) a four-month-old foster baby, whom we met for the first time and found thoroughly charming. She’s truly a sweetheart! Because they can’t post photos of her in public, they have to be careful with family pics. But I thought they did a great job with this one!

Bennett with spoonsThe next morning we had breakfast at the motel restaurant with not only Shelley & Scott & the grandkids, but also with our son Art and his wife Jennie, as well as my sister and her husband. We had to wait a long time for our food, but that merely gave us adults a chance to chat and the kids to entertain the rest of us.

We then went back to Craig’s sister’s house in Parma for the official Anderson Christmas. It was one day late because Art & Jennie weren’t able to be there on the 25th, but I don’t think anyone cared about the delay. After the festivities, we went back to the motel where the kids—along with Craig’s nieces this time—did some more swimming.swimming

Art & Jennie had to go home that night, and Shelley & Scott left the following morning. But Craig & I went to Rustie’s apartment for a while before the three of us went to my brother’s house, where we had “Smithmas” with him and his wife, our daughter Emily, and my sister and her husband.

I don’t know how many more Christmases we’ll be able to visit with everyone, and we very much enjoyed being able to do it this year. We’re also very thankful that we have families to spend the holidays with—and that everyone enjoys one another’s company.

New Year’s Eve was uneventful, but on New Year’s Day, we went to a wedding! Not the usual way to start the new year, but it was a lovely wedding and a happy day.

I have many things to be thankful for, but I’ve rambled on long enough. And besides that, I’m out of pictures. Maybe in my next post I’ll talk about some of the books I’ve been reading. That would be appropriate for a writer’s blog, wouldn’t it?

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