We had ourselves quite a busy weekend! (I’ve been told I am doing a very poor job of transitioning from “I” to “we” in conversation since the wedding… working on that!) Friday after work, we visited the Hopkins Tavern for happy hour with Lauren’s work friends. It was here that I looked oddly out of place, not engaging anyone in conversation. Why, you might ask? Because I didn’t know anyone and was shy? Partially, I suppose. But mostly it was because all the chairs were taken and a few of us were forced to stand. That caused the sound coming out of people’s mouths to be directed right into my chest, not my ears. Unless I hunched down, I couldn’t hear a damn thing. But Lauren had fun seeing her co-workers outside of work.
Later that evening, old classmate Kyla Madsen paid us a visit. She was in town from Des Moines for the weekend and stopped by to hang out for a while and catch up on old times. When I told my co-workers earlier in the day that Kyla Madsen was coming to visit, they were all very excited. You see, many moons ago our company adopted the name Kyla Madsen for the stock photo of this beautiful girl who appears on all of our marketing material. Many co-workers, to this day, are unaware that the real-life Kyla and the photo of this girl we named Kyla are not the same person. Anyway, Jason also joined me, Lauren, and Kyla at the apartment and merriment was experienced by all. Kyla also dropped by again Saturday evening for a couple hours.
Sunday, Lauren and I made the relatively quick jaunt to St. Croix Falls, Wisconsin to visit my great uncle and aunt, Don and Vernyce Bell. The two had hoped to make it to the wedding in October, but were unable to do so. But Don insisted he would go to work in his shop and paint us a picture of our choice for a present. It wasn’t until yesterday that we were able to go check out his work. In the end, he had done two watercolor paintings and decided to give them both to us. These are based on pictures I took from our little trip up to the North Shore right after the wedding. We agreed Don Bell did a heck of a job with the old paintbrush!
After returning from Wisconsin, we ventured over to the Sandy Sandbun residence on the far outskirts of Chaska for the Super Bowl party. I had almost no interest in the Super Bowl after experiencing the devastating eliminations of the Chargers and Vikings in the playoffs’ late rounds, but I did enjoy the food. Lauren made her first batch of ice cream with her mixer, and she also made soft pretzels from scratch. Between the other eight guests, there was plenty more food to go around. I went to bed stuffed full and woke up this morning still bursting at the seams.
We’re currently getting plenty of snow. In fact, it hasn’t stopped snowing for about 16 hours now. My drive to work this morning took over an hour and a half. The forecast is calling for up to five more inches today and five more overnight. Just enough to make it a pain to drive to and from work but just not enough to cancel work. This weather is certainly depressing for those of us inactive in winter sports.