Thanksgiving 2008 for me was spent at the home of my friends Sara and Matthew and their family. The whole day was wonderful. The holidays will never be the same without my family, but this is the closest I can get to family. What makes this Thanksgiving one of the ones that makes it to my top five is the theme: We were all tasked to prepare a Brussels Sprouts dish, and yes we were judged. I loved the structure, believe it or not. We had name placards, given ballots and were served one dish at a time. What a marvelous idea to be served one dish at a time. It makes the dinner last a long time which made for lots of interesting conversation.
I am so happy to know these peeps and figured out tonight that I have known Matthew the longest of all the folks in attendance. He and Sara are my longest remaining friends. I have allowed myself to reflect on these connections. All of my old Roseburg and Christian friends disowned me years ago. You all know why, although I still can't figure out why. I am the same Sweeney!
Below is the group, except for me (the moratorium is still in place of photos of me). . .
Sara's Fabulous table setting. . .
Matthew had the difficult task of not only preparing the meat, but cutting it as well. . . I have no idea how this tasted, but according to everyone else it was fabulous. . .
I am so thankful.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
The song Home from the soundtrack The Wiz has become one of my all time favorite songs. This song has been sung by some of the greatest singers who have ever lived like Stephanie Mills and Diana Ross. The video below is Whitney's version from 1985 on the Merv Griffin Show. I love the lyrics so much that I am going to include them in my Christmas card this year, which will honor my recent visit with my family in Indiana. Indy has never been my home, but after 16 years of random visits it feels like home. This song also helps me reflect on how lucky I am to have a wonderful Home with Jim and the kitties. . . It's hard to hear the first 5 seconds of this video, but it gets a lot better. I hope you enjoy. . .
Thursday, November 20, 2008
October 30th-November 9th, 2008
My vacation away from home this year started in Tacoma, WA, where I had an evening with David Sedaris. I was treated by my friends Sara, Terrie and Matthew. Listening to David speak was the highlight of 2008. Thanks TM for introducing me to his work so many years ago. Brilliant!
I then flew to Indianapolis where I was greeted by my sister Kelli. Here she is with Casey in costume. She is Princess Leia. He is Anakin. Wasn't Anakin Leia's father? Kinda creepy. It was Halloween so it was a festive evening at the Lynch's. This photo was actually taken the next night at their costume party. Oh, ya. Casey built his costume from scratch. . .
On Monday my mom and I drove to Santa Claus, IN, where on Tuesday we elected a new president. It's a new day!! The most exciting part of the election was that I was visiting a swing state that went blue. I felt like the good luck charm. I am so proud as everyone in my family in Indy voted for Obama. Brilliant! I got most of my rest at mom's. I thank her so much for creating such a relaxing atmosphere. However, I took a small bike ride around Christmas Lake, which almost killed me. Oh my, I need to get into shape. She, like normal, bought all the food in which I snacked on for two days, of course. I'm huge.
From there I went to my dad's. He lives in Jasper. He took me fishing and camping. Check out this fire. . . which burned on for about 5 hours. . .
Doesn't the next picture look like it should be published in one of those fishing magazines? My dad rents a spot at a beautiful camp all year long and takes his boat up there to fish for bass. Here's dad on his boat. . .
I forget how much I like to camp. Me and my dad used to hunt and fish all the time. Yes it's true. I so cherish those moments, more now that I am older. Don't you wish you could go back in time and relive those wonderful family memories? Dad expressed that he wished there were more camping trips when Kelli and I were kids, I agree. Here's me and dad. . . Thanks Dad!
I then returned to Indianapolis to spend the day and night with Kelli and Family. We took the boys to a Fun Center. Here are Layke, Layne and Brody all having a good time. The only disappointing part of the evening is I never won a stuffed animal in a Claw Machine. What a bummer.
This is Layke. He's strapped onto a "safe" trampoline. This is him strapped into the harness, which was attached to three "safety" cords, one that broke with him in mid air. What an amazing candid shot. He is shocked, as was I. Thank god for the 2 other "safety" straps. I felt like I should have had a safety conversation with the staff (this is something we do now at work: safety conversations.) These boys are so athletic. . .
Here's Layne climbing the cliffs, he was so good. . .
Last but definitely not least is Brody. . .
What a lovely week. I got lots of rest, didn't worry about work, appreciated my family more than ever and we elected Obama. It's a new day!! My family and I have grown so much and evolved into wonderful, productive humans. I felt so much love, which will help me get through the next year. Family: Come to Oregon!!!
Here's me and Kelli. . .
Tuesday, November 4, 2008
Dateline: Indianapolis, IN. The Actress, Princess and the crazy cat lady. . . My sister Kelli had a costume party on Saturday night and the picture below is of my Aunt Kathy, me and Kelli early in the night. I am visiting my family in Indiana and currently in Santa Claus, IN, which is where my mom lives. Today is election day, which is very exciting, especially since I am visiting a swing state. I am going to the polls with my mom this afternoon. I already voted as Oregon only has mail in balloting, which is so convenient.