Tonight will be pretty mellow for us, as previously mentioned, unless we get an unexpected visit from a moose or other large woodland critter up at the cabin. Otto and Little Man, above, are doing a great job demonstrating what I imagine the next 12+ hours will look like. While I think the pics of the animals’ backsides are pretty cute, I don’t want to end the mirthmobile’s birth year on pet butts, so I’ll send us all off on more celebratory note: This shot was taken right before we kicked off the wild dance party that was Allison and Jonas’ wedding reception two weeks ago tonight. (They told us to act crazy, I promise. Way to halfass it, guys.) Happy New Year! Here’s to a 2012 full of ridiculous fun and dear friends!
photo by the brilliant Kelly Boitano
We’ve been in Idaho almost a week now. No snow to speak of this year — just a light coating on the ground one night at the cabin, which is about 600 feet higher in elevation than the town, and plenty of rain and clouds otherwise. I’ve had no use for all that cold-weather stuff I squished into my bag, which is quite unusual. Not unusual is the amount of cookies consumed, hours spent working on this year’s puzzle, rich meals prepared and devoured, and presents lavished upon us by Jon’s gift-happy mother. (I really wish now that I hadn’t brought along my winter gear so I could fit more of my presents in my carry-on going home.)
Tomorrow is New Year’s Eve. My plans include: watching Northwestern win their first bowl game since 1949 in the morning (I believe!); catching up on all that work I didn’t do before break and still have not completed (I’m an idiot!); working on the puzzle some more; eating a lovely home-cooked dinner up at the cabin with the fam; and sipping fancy wine with Jon’s folks until we toast the new year at midnight. Outside of the work part, it should be delightful!
Durham, North Carolina, December (I’m guessing) 1991(ish)
OK, yes, this is post-dated… but I didn’t feel right starting off with a Christmas picture in January, so I figured I’d fill in the hole I left last week. How sweet is this? It looks like Jon’s on the phone with Santa… even though he’s the one in the Santa hat. Whatever.
It’s 7:18 a.m. and Jon and I are sitting at gate T15 at the Atlanta airport, bound for Spokane (ultimately Moscow, Idaho) via Denver. My family, ever committed to maintaining tradition, all rolled out of bed and downstairs to the Christmas tree at 5 a.m. to open presents together. Jon thought we were crazy to get everyone up so early, but it worked out just fine. What champs! Showed him. At this point they’ve all been back in bed asleep for at least an hour.
I know plenty of families that exchange gifts on Christmas Eve, but the Poes are not one of those. Mom worked at our church when we were growing up and I’ve had choir jobs since late high school, so Christmas Eve always been sort of a working day with its own protocol. Things that can’t not happen on December 24 include: going to church; eating a late-night second dinner at Waffle House (the one on Roswell Road); and watching hilarious holiday family videos from the ’80s. Watching the midnight service at Atlanta’s Cathedral of St. Philip on television isn’t totally mandatory, but usually happens as well.
Our flight is about to start boarding, so I’ll sign off from ATL. (Dispatch from Idaho to come later on.) Merry Christmas to all!
Jon brought home a bow tie from one of his increasingly frequent thrifting trips the other day and we both tried to learn how to tie it. After mastering it on myself (Jon’s still working on it), I decided to practice on the dog:
What a handsome little sir!
You may think you’re being clever and getting around last-minute shipping fees by ordering something site-to-store, but I can assure you that it is worth the extra $20 to have whatever it is delivered to your doorstep and avoid the organizational shitshow that is the service department of a big-box store.
This morning I got email notification that my purchase was ready for pickup at Walmart. About 20 minutes ago, after two separate visits to the store today amounting to about an hour of waiting with no result, I received this email:
Wah wahhh. So, to recap, not only do I not have the thing I ordered (a toolbox to contain parts of a present), I also wasted at least an hour of my day draining my phone battery in an effort to entertain myself in the back of my local Walmart. Next time I’m paying for overnight shipping!
Johnson City, Tennessee, 1951 or 1952?
I’ve been hopping across the country for the past week (Atlanta > New York > San Francisco > Atlanta) and we’re flying out to Idaho on Christmas day, so it seemed an appropriate time to use this impossibly awesome photo of my grandma Dot and my dad, then Jimmy, returning home after a trip. According to what’s written on the back of the picture, they were “Getting off the train at Johnson City, Tenn. after our visit to Cape [Girardeau, Mo., to see family].”
Can you even believe this was real life and not something out of a movie? I can’t get over my dad’s tiny letterman sweater. Oh how glamorous the 1950s looked!
Paris, France, November 2003
During my year abroad in Germany I traveled to nearly a dozen other countries. The first big trip I planned myself was a Parisian rendezvous with Tyler and Allison, my closest friends from college who also happened to be in Europe at the time (Tyler with me in Freiburg, Allison in Dublin). We met at the train station and stayed the first night with another college buddy at his folks’ home in Fountainbleu, where he had grown up. (I know.) The next day he took us back into the city and guided us around for a few hours. This photo was taken not long into our very first Paris experience; it would be a weekend of — how you say? — epic awesomeness. I think the excitement on our faces here tells it pretty well.
In just a few days, the lovely Allison will marry a darling fellow she met through our friend Tyler. Y’all send good vibes in the direction of San Francisco! More on this to come…
for festive breakroom treats! Ho ho.
Atlanta, Georgia, December 1984/1989/2011
Each December my family decorates sugar cookies together before our annual holiday party. As you can see from the dates listed, this has been going on for some time. (As you can also see, we are still using the same cookie cutters: I’m working on stockings in all of these pictures.) This top photo cracks me up because these days I’m known as the hand-washing nazi of the family; my sense of sanitary cookie-decorating practices was clearly not always so keen.
The Christmas party is coming up this weekend already. At some point before Christmas itself, I’ll post a thorough photo retrospective of the tradition.