Friday, January 2, 2009
St. Paul - Saturday and Sunday
Saturday was blown in by a visit from old friends, the Christenson's. They were a part of our church in California, and Mr. Christenson was the pastor who baptized Dad. We had a great breakfast of bacon and waffles with them, catching up on news and having some in depth theological discussions. :) Then, the late morning and afternoon were spent ice-skating! We all bundled up and headed out, even Elizabeth and Mum. Elizabeth pulled her sled around, and the rest of us skated away - the boys even played a full-on hockey game! Us ladies bowed out after about an hour. We went home, got lunch ready for the men, then headed off on the great shopping expedition. I only bought 3 things and I was very proud of myself for this frugality. I believe I only spent about. . . 15 dollars too!
Sunday, we went to Grandma and Grandpa's church (although we didn't walk this time!) and our family sang "Angels We Have Heard On High" in the four-part harmony we learned. Originally, we had just prepared it to sing for Grandma and Grandpa. . .but, after singing for them Saturday night, Grandma asked if we would please sing Sunday morning in church. So we did. I think we were okay - Dad said we didn't go flat like we tend to. :) Mum and Isaac took the soprano (along with ocassional assistance from Elizabeth), Zeke and I covered alto (okay, so I pretty much lip-sync), Abby was our strong tenor (yes, she can hit every note), and Andy and Dad handled the bass (although poor Andy came in about 3 weeks after the rest of us had already been working on it, he did a fine job). It was at the very least a joyful noise to the Lord!
After church, we packed up the van (no easy feat, what with the additional presents and shopping items!) and headed for a last lunch. We dined at the traditional "Mickey's Diner" in downtown St. Paul. An experience to be sure - if you ever go to St. Paul, you must try it out. And if you've ever seen Mighty Ducks - it's the diner in those movies.
Before I move on . . . a HUGE thank you to Grandma and Grandpa Hall, for putting up with our invasion for nearly a week! Your flexibility and hospitality are to be greatly commended. You are truly the greatest paternal grandparents a kid could have. Grandma - all your amazing meals and fun little traditions and decorations made it really special. I will always treasure our tea-times, bustling around the kitchen with you, and laughing together as we watched White Christmas. I have become quite certain that you are a" kindred spirit". Grandpa - thanks for spending time talking with Dad about all that "Lutheran stuff." I know that he appreciates the it so very much, and I love you all the more for taking the time to listen and help mentor him in this thing we call life. The influence you have had, and continue to have on him trickles down to me each and every day. I love you both!