Monday, December 25, 2006

Christmas Day

This is a somewhat blurry picture of my favorite Christmas ornament. I just love that he's a squirrel with a little blanket and pillow, with a little stocking filled with acorns. I love that he's nestled in among the lights and pine boughs, sound asleep, just dreaming about some nice tasty acorns. It's just cute, I don't know. I love little woodland mammals, which is why I also love the works of Brian Jacques and Richard Adams, among others.

Christmas Day is always a wonderful day. It would be better if I didn't have to go back to work tomorrow, but, oh well. Today I can be lazy and enjoy the toasty warmth of a welcoming home, a loving family, and delicious food. We haven't opened the presents yet (Thomas is not out of bed yet, and Dad went to help Grandmother with something), and I haven't gone running. It's so toasty and comfy and yummy-smelling...I can't bear to leave. Maybe later, before dinner. I did go yesterday, and we went for a brisk hike on Saturday, so overall the weekend has been quite good.

This is the route I've hiked since I was a little girl. It starts out right behind my grandmother's house, where an interstate was put in on a hill directly behind their house. A pipe, probably 8 feet in diameter, was installed below to allow the creek to continue to flow through the artificial hill. Walking through this pipe without a flashlight is "fun."

Coming out on the other side is always a relief. You have to walk bowlegged to avoid the water in the bottom of the pipe. The journey seems much shorter and more painful than I remembered!

Then we set off up the hill.

It's quite a long way; probably about a mile or so straight uphill along a series of ridges.

Here's the view near the top.

And here is the object of our journey; a "waterfall" and the source of the creek that flows around Grandmother's yard. I spent my childhood playing in this creek. It used to be huge undertaking to make it all the way up here, but really it's only maybe a mile and a half away.

We started to take Old Vincennes Road back down, but it took us completely out of our way. We ended up taking a shortcut down this hill by the road. We figured out later on mapmyrun.com that we hiked about 4.17 miles.

That night we had a rousing game of Scrabble, which Thomas won.

Then we played Uno (talk about a blast from elementary school), which was actually really fun. It didn't help that we were all tipsy by this point from various libations. We only get this way twice a year. =)

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, whatever you may be celebrating!
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