Saturday, January 3, 2009

St. Paul - Monday and Tuesday

Here begins the great Hall Family Christmas Vacation, 2008!

We left Rolla Monday night, after basketball practices, and drove through the night. On a weekend trip to Denver a few summers ago, we discovered that we can create a sort of bed in the back of our 12 passenger van - by taking the back seat out, packing all the bags under a large (custom-cut) sheet of plywood, and placing a futon on the plywood, a quite comfortable resting place is made. Isaac and Libeth slept in their carseats (how do kids do that?) and the rest of us rotated on the bed. Dad drove most of the 10 hours - the weather was a bit yucky, and the roads sort of icy.

We pulled in at Grandma's house at 8:30 am. Naturally, communication had gotten somewhat mixed up, and she wasn't expecting us for 12 more hours! Still, we managed to adjust and make it one more day of fun! We helped her with the cleaning and decorating she had been planning to do, and had an extra day of snow play with the cousins! We also got in quite a few naps, to prepare us for a busy, bustling week of fun.

Zeke, trimming the tree

Isaac (this picture is crooked because I have a nervous hand under his rear end as he balances on the step stool)

Abby - she stuck with it, and did the bulk of the work. Good job luv!

Our "supervisor"

Zeke, braving the cold for some snow-play.
Grandma calls this style "Minnesota Chic" - the way she tells it, if all your snow clothes coordinate, well, "You ain't from around here, now that's for sure."

Grandma, explaining the rules to "Fox and Geese"

Nap time all around!

Cousin Alex

Our Happy Birthday Jesus cake, iced and decorated by Mr. Enthusiastic there

The rest of the week was filled with fun and games, activities and lots and lots of food. But one of my favorite parts was the music. Abby had brought along her trumpet, and our extra coronet. Upon arrival, we found that Grandpa had three trumpets of his own, one baritone, and an alto saxaphone! Well, let me tell you, we had quite the band going then! Grandpa led the group, harmonizing away on his trumpet - Mum took the melody, magically remember the fingering and notes, and playing entirely by ear (she hasn't played for years and years - I am 17, and I have never heard her play) - Grandma ocassionally accompanied on the piano, when she wasn't working away in the kitchen - Abby did an outstanding job playing by ear, taking the melody line and making some real music - Andy would pop in every now and then with a trumpet (which he has never played before in his life - hey, it added character to the mix) - Zeke . . . oh I guess he didn't have his drum, so he didn't join in - and Dad was truly the jack-of-all-trades, alternating between piano, trumpet, and baritone (he had never played the baritone before, but picked it up quite handsomly) - Isaac, Elizabeth, and I all listened with admiration and awe (except Elizabeth, who held her hands over her ears most of the time). It was amazing - I wish you could have been there! Throughout the week this chorus of heavenly sounds accompanied much of our activities. I felt proud to be a part of such a family!

Abby and Dad


Anonymous said...

Elizabeth is the cutest little gal! ~Candi

Susanna said...

You and your family sound like so much fun!