Alot of Stuff

So as not to pass over any event as trite I am going to designate this post Thanksgiving only.  There, done and done.  This year we decided to stay  put up here in the great North for the holidays.  No driving for us.  Little did we know Grandpa Ron and Mema were thinking about a trip to celebrate with us.  Nice.  Add to that the three girl Things' baptism, a post for another day, and they were in.  Which lead me to planning a feast not just for our six, but the eight of us.  A task I love.
The Things and I planned our menu, grocery shopped and set about to bake and prepare the day before.  Here we are in the kitchen, diligently stirring, chopping and mixing.
 Notice the no shirt-apron look, it's how we roll around here
My girls and me
Just for posterity's sake, Thing 4 made the corn casserole this year, Thing 3 was in charge of pumpkin pie, Thing 2 cranberry sauce and most of the chopping for stuffing, etc., Thing 1 pecan chocolate chip pie.  Me, everything else.  With the exception of lefse, that is Mema's specialty and a few of the Things pitched in to help her once again.  There is nothing like fresh lefse on Thanksgiving morning.
I let Mema take the reigns in the kitchen while Husband Jared and I headed out for a run on a rare but totally appreciated 60 degree day.  I am nothing but determined to be grateful for all that comes with living here in winter's domain. 
Our morning was slow and sweet, just the way I like them and that run propelled me into gratefulness I wasn't quite prepared for.  It was wonderful.  We came home to Things and grandparents sharing snacks, watching football and playing cards.  Once the table was set and the side dishes had cooked we sat down to enjoy the meal and read all the thankfulness that overflowed from the "thankful tank" this year.  Among the tops were Jesus, and all the family time we've spent together during this fall season.  What gifts to remember.

 The family gathered

Our table
 Mother and Son
Card playing that took place morning, noon and night
We had originally planned on a walk around the bluffs and to the creek but the weather had a different agenda.  The rain, then sleet and finally snow came falling and the wind was blistering.  A nap on the sofa was a much better option.  After we rested and talked and laughed some more we enjoyed pie and coffee and some card playing.  Then off to bed for an early morning rise.  For what else but shopping!
 To round out the family Thanksgiving experience us girls, Thing 3 excluded, woke early, made coffee and hit the icy road ready for crowds, Christmas music and fun! And that is exactly what we had.  A few hours of line free shopping at MOA and Mema had taken care of all the Things' Christmas presents and even admitted to rather enjoying her shopping experience.  You must understand Mema and I are not terribly fond of shopping but mix that up with two excitable Things who can navigate the mall like no body's business and we found ourselves laughing the time away.  Memories made.

 The boys and Thing 3 had gone bowling and were ready to share their scores and highlights of the morning as well.  So we did and then we were all set for a friendly game of Catch Phrase.  Or not!  Our family, Hanson 6, is extremely competitive, shocking right?  Needless to say the game was not without arguments and questionable points and belly laughter.  All for the sake of the game.  It is always a hoot to listen to your children describe something from their perspective and then even better when the four of them are on the same wave length and don't even need to use words.  It was as if they had their own secret language.  Interesting.  For the record though, the parents and grandparents won, and the Things had dish duty that night.  After our trip to the movies.  A full day for all of us and one we won't soon forget.  Thanks Grandpa and Mema for making the trek up here and spending a few days making memories with us. 

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