countertops and christmas cheer

My last week of school was filled with fun by way of happy kids watching The Giver movie and all sorts of gifts left on my desk. That’s the difference between teaching middle  and high schoolers, I suppose! I took home all sorts of loot!

Meanwhile, Bryan spent the week cutting a little bit of wood and installing our new countertops! We found a big piece of brand new countertop on craigslist! It’s laminate, but was cut at angles on the edges for someone else’s kitchen, so it doesn’t stretch the entire way. We took it off a guy’s hands and Bryan cut the edges square. He installed it and it is beautiful with the cabinets! It looks nicer than our counters at our home house! IMG_1484

Due to large gifts, Christmas came early at Circular Lodgic. Bryan got a long sought after bent twig rocking chair. He came home Friday night from skiing (while I worked away at Christmas cookies) to it sitting in the yurt. He’s tested it out and loves it. I did well this year! I also had a large surprise (and lots of little ones too) in the form of a new dresser. I can’t even stand how cute it is! I LOVE IT!. Bryan also received a new splitting ax. He has been using a regular ax this whole time and had broken the handle on some hard Maple already. From my mom and John he got a new ax that is lighter, longer, and made for splitting. His response to it, caught on video, was priceless!

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Saturday morning we prepared the homestead to be shut down for a bit of time while we travel for the holidays. We drained all the water out of the tank and the pipes. We had planned to completely turn the heat off, but since we’re doing okay on propane (in theory it should last us to June), we decided not to risk the pipes freezing and left the heat at 50. We took care of all sorts of last minute things, skied with the pups, and packed the car full of gifts, gear and our summer clothes because WE ARE HEADED TO PUERTO RICO! I still can’t really believe it. We are not the type of people who get to head to tropical lands over Christmas and I never actually thought I’d be doing such a thing, but when opportunity knocks, by way of my mom and John inviting us along, you answer.

We hit the road, looking forward to seeing friends in Duluth (and dropping off a special little kitty who Kelly and Jason are sweet enough to termporarily adopt AGAIN) and then spending Christmas with Mom and Dad in Mankato! Duluth was a blast. We got to have our favorite Brewhouse fare and have laughs with K & J, plus Bryan got to watch his Vikings lose another game before we hit the road to Mankato!

In Mankato, we spent our time relaxing, visiting the farm and watching all the pups run wild and happy! We had breakfast at Whiskey River one morning, where they have feeders and a bird sanctuary right outside. We watched the fattest squirrels I have ever seen feast, and cardinals and other birds feed as well. Plus, I (with just a little help) cleaned my plate after joking with the waitress about how impossible this would be. She came back with a rice krispy treat and an “award” for this great feat. I know, you must be impressed! IMG_0594We stopped by Grandpa’s, wrapped presents, and have eaten all sorts of delicious treats. Now we’re off the farm again to walk the pups! The next two days will be full of yummy food, family all around, and by the looks of the tree, some sweet gifts! After that, we’re off to sunshine and 84 degrees!

May your holidays be as bright as ours!

Happy holidays, everyone!

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