Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Christmas 2010, part 2


I didn't actually mean to post this today... I set this one up to post automatically on Saturday and must have forgotten about it. For those of my readers who don't know, my Oma passed away this past Sunday. I guess that makes the fun we had in the post below a bit more special seeing as it was her last Christmas with us. There will be some commemorative posting later, but for now let's take a look at the good times.

The cousins could only stay with us for a couple of days, leaving on the Thursday after Christmas. Before then we managed to do a few fun things, including a trip to the Corning Museum of Glass. The CMoG as I'll be calling it is a pretty cool museum, showing off a lot of glass science and history right next to the place where they invented fiber optics and CorningWare. Here are some photos from our outing:

On our last night we had Fasekigla (oy... is that how you spell it?) and my dad made stuffed peppers. Yum!

My cousins were all scheduled to leave by Thursday but my Uncle was unfortunately not able to get a seat on his flight. So we decided to make the best of it and went on a mini wine tour, hitting up Bully Hill, Dr. Franz Konstantin, Heron Hill and Ithaca Beer Co. Here's some pics of beautiful Finger Lakes country with some Herzl clan members thrown in.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Christmas 2010, Part 1

Well, it certainly has been a long time since I rapped at you all... wait, I've started this way before and it didn't work out well then either.

For Christmas Rachel and I headed back to Elmira. We were planning on driving but through a combination of stress on my part and increasingly dire weather predictions for the weekend we decided to fly. I had to work until noon on Christmas Eve so the best that I could do was the first flight out of Milwaukee on Christmas morning.

For reference, the weather predictions were very dire- snow starting on Christmas Eve and building into a full Nor'Easter on Sunday. And, to be fair, it proved true... just not on any of the places that I was going. 3 AM on Christmas? Roads clear. Flight to and from Detroit? Not snowing. My entry into Elmira? The ground was brown. BROWN!

Coming from a land where there was at least a foot of snow on the ground, I think it's fair to say that I was a bit disappointed.

SigusFriedus and Le Dog picked us up from the airport. After that it was a whirlwind meet n' greet with the immediate fam and the quickest present opening that I have ever been privy to. Highlights included:
-I Love Bacon! from The Girl
-Awesome spring jacket that Hans got me from Columbia
-Mark Twain's Autobiography!
-and the most awesome thing of all, a drinking horn holder.

You seriously have no idea how awesome this is. Having experience attempting to use a drinking horn at... a family friendly Rootbeer-athon!... it is incredibly hard to reliably keep one's drink in the horn or one's mouth based simply on the fact that you can't put it down. With this device, I can enjoy my Nordic traditions while secure in the fact that my horn will not tip over and spill my mead.

From there my cousins came home and we started off the big family reunion. Gifts were exchanged in a "Secret" Santa. I got some awesome silicone bake/cookware from my cousin Matt while I in return got him the Star Wars pop-up book (with working lightsabers!). The inevitable Christmas dinner featured double the normal number of birds, and in the war between Max and Meat I am sad to say that meat almost won, going so far as cutting off my dessert resupply. The jerks.

I also got to reconnect with Greg who grew a beard in my absence. Much Black Ops was played, and I was introduced to a new game that Hans got called Stomple. I can't help but pronounce it the German way...

Anyway, this post is getting a bit long, so I'll continue the rest of the trip hopefully over the next week. Check in next time for the 7 v 7 soccer tourney!

Until next time...

"The xmas holidays have this high value: that they remind Forgetters of the Forgotten, & repair damaged relationships."
- letter to Carlotte Welles by Mark Twain, 30 December 1907