Merry Christmas it was, twice! Shannon and I headed up to Wichita on Tuesday after a quick 1 hour side trip back to the house to get the gifts for our moms that had been left by the front door by the delivery man.
When we finally made it to Wichita, we did a bit of shopping and went to bed. Shannon and I started off our Christmas Eve by getting lost in Wichita trying to find Old Town and eventually meeting Andy 1/2 an hour late for lunch at Hana Cafe. Then, later on that day, Mom decided she would get all nauseous and make her daughters cook. So Maria, Shannon, and I made some crab sauce with pasta, Caesar salad, mussels, and shrimp scampi. There were 10 adults and 2 toddlers for dinner. It was a good time and everyone seemed to enjoy themselves, except for Mom. She didn't eat and kinda didn't have a good time.
We then slept and eventually got up on Christmas morning for some breakfast and gifting. Nikki is adorable.
We had some more good food. This time, Jayme and Charles made it.
Shannon and I bought ourselves Ticket to Ride: Marklin edition. That game is very good. We played twice at Mom's. Carcassone was also played and a poor black meeple was fed to and partly eaten by Atari. I tried to save him.
Friday we ate breakfast at Charles & Jayme's place then met up with Rhonda & Michelle for lunch with my mom. After that, we said good bye to Mom and drove down to Tulsa. But this post has enough pictures for now. I'll post about Christmas #2 laters.
There was Thanksgiving with Mom, Jayme, Maria, Charles, Nikki, Tommy, and Shannon.
Then there was Thanksgiving at Rhoda's with about 17 other people.
The following weekend, Shannon and I returned to Wichita for the Trans Siberian Orchestra concert. Awesome.
The next day (which was 3 days after my mom's 50th birthday), Jayme, Maria, and I threw a surprise birthday party for Mom. At Laser Quest. Yes. That was awesome. Mom had no idea and everyone (almost 30 people) seemed to have a good time. Jayme made some foods, Maria got some drinks, and I brought the cake (with 50 candles). It was great fun and Laser Quest has their show organized. I mean, there were I think 3 parties going on and it never got annoying. Plus everything ran on time and was fun! Not to mention that Wichita's Laser Quest is the best laser tag I've been too. I've also visited one in Olathe and one in Colorado Springs.
So we did a bit of shopping and by 10 o'clock at night, it was well below freezing and had started to precipitate. Unfortunately, it was just sleet and freezing rain. When we woke up in the morning it looked like reverse snow.
We got ready for work and headed out at the normal time, because guess who doesn't have to scrape the ice off their car any more. That's right, us.
We didn't get very far. I can tell you that. We drove about 10-15 mph through our development and then went to stop at the sign at 81st street. Well, instead of stopping our car decided to slide until it hit something. That something was just a curb, but we hit it pretty hard. I believe I heard our tire say "Ouww. I hate you guys!"
So we turned right slowly onto 81st street and began to creep up the hill. The road was a sheet of ice. No salt, just ice. We started up the little hill and were giving our selves plenty of room from the car in front of us. When we got to the top of the little hill, we stopped because the cars in front of us were stopped, with a slight bit of sliding-down-hill. Why was traffic stopped? Allow this picture to illustrate.
The blue arrows show the path of our car. Our second (left) turn was not initially part of our commute, but it had to happen. The white blob is a horse-type trailer that was partially blocking the oncoming traffic. The truck was not attached, I'm assuming it got stuck, un-hitched the trailer and left so that traffic wasn't totally blocked off. Anyway.
Since oncoming traffic was blocked, they were trying to get around the trailer by coming into our lane of traffic (this is represented by the black and orange blobs above). The only thing was, they were going uphill. So, the two black cars were stuck. That's right. They were in our lane, facing us, with their tires spinning. Nice. So the cars in front of Shann and I eventually all turned left and we then followed.
As we were turning, we noticed that the orange blob was a large salt-truck. He was stuck behind the two stuck black cars.
Eventually we turned around and went home (arrival of which was about 1 mile and 30 minutes after departure). The salt-truck made it through and about 1 1/2 hours later we tried again and made it to work.
The roads in Tulsa are horrible. They take ages to do construction, need to do reparis on about 75% of the roads, and apparently can't salt the roads in advance.
Oh yeah. The German office sent over about 20-30 Ritter chocolate bars. Shannon and I were chocolate buddies (a request made by el boss) and we picked the Knusperflakes chocolate. It has corn flakes in it.
It was very similar to rice krispies in your chocolate, like a Crunch bar, but they were much heavier.
I'll post some pictures when I'm home and not busy sometime.
I thought of something. It has to do with hobbies. I have hobbies, I like to sew, paint, knit, do stained glass, and other such fun things. But now that I have a job that takes up my day from when I wake up to 10 1/2 hours later, I just don't have time to do all my fun things. So, do people lose their hobbies when they get jobs?
Today at work Shannon and I participated in some testing. It was quite fun, actually. We were using Go To Meeting while on a conference call. There were 5 of us involved. 4 of us were sitting in the same room with only cubicle walls separating us (the 4 closest cubicles in the room actually). The fifth person, was in a separate room, but no door separates the rooms.
So, yeah. It was different and useful and fun.