Oh, the blog, I have missed you

Merry belated Christmas, bloglings! I have missed you. I purposely took a break from blogging this week. I really wanted to just unplug and watch my babies play with their new toys. I did sneak a peek now and then at some of my favorites, but spent most of my time away from the computer. Santa was very good to our family (in spite of the fact that I'm perpetually on the naughty list) and the kids still aren't tired of their junk.

Christmas Eve was spent with some very special old friends that live here in MO. We enjoyed a live Nativity put on by the children. Very spiritual. It was especially touching during Mary's serenade to the baby Jesus when the sheep (age 2) climbed on back of the stuffed pony and wanted to go for a ride. I'm sure that totally happened at the real thing, too.

Here are some highlights (feel free to skip it if you're not a grandparent...or even if you are):

After Christmas, we were looking for someplace to get away for a few days. We had been asked to speak in church and just weren't quite ready for that kind of commitment (don't worry - they got us re-scheduled for mid-January) so we packed up the car and headed south to Branson.

Have you ever been to Branson? We hadn't either. It was a strange combination of worlds. Picture a bizarre mix of the Osmonds and Las Vegas. That's Branson. Only without the gambling. But with extra helpings of old ladies and a disturbingly large number of wacky theme-restaurants.

It was about what you'd expect it to be.

We spent most of the time at our hotel on the lake (never did find out the name of this lake -- everyone just called it The Lake! The Lake! We're going up to The Lake!) but the weather was glorious and we spent hours outside exploring, hiking, and throwing rocks into The Lake! We only ventured indoors briefly, and that was for some swimming when we tired of all that fresh air.

Here are some highlights:

Yeah, I'd totally do it again. Might have to. Say, maybe Sunday, January 13th.

Anyone care to join me?