We spent the week between Christmas and New Year visiting more friends and family. We went bowling, watched football games, made stop motion videos using stick bots, modeling clay, poor Osmond, and even some of our human friends. We soaked up as much friend/family time as we could. I teetered between anticipating homesickness for family and friends and anticipating the excitement of more travel. I am very bad at just enjoying the moment; the time I get with the people I love is bitter sweet. I experience the feeling of missing these people when I am right there with them in the room!
Osmond knows how I feel. He and Radar just barely perfected the art of being a totem pole, and now we have to leave!
As December 31 approached, we started to weasel out of our New Year’s Eve Tradition - the Crabcrack. With Sonrisa in Tonga, our house rented out, and our living accommodations varying between a Ford Transit Van and/or various guest rooms of friends and family, we didn’t know where to hold the Crabcrack. But, the morning of New Year’s Eve dawned with new vigor. I tried to chase down a flock of wild turkeys for a picture, and after huffing and puffing through the snow and high elevation, I was all fired up and ready to go. So, we shuffled off to Albertsons to acquire crab.
If I can give you one piece of advice on New Year’s Eve-making, it is this: At about 5 p.m. drink one or two Irish Coffees. (If you imbibe in coffee and alcohol, that is. If not, I guess you are going to have to go with a jello shooter, infused with Sprite.) An Irish Coffee is the perfect treat to help you make it to midnight. A tablespoon of sugar, a pour of piping hot coffee, a shot of Irish Whiskey (I’m not going to get into the Bushmills v. Jameson fight, they both taste fine to me), and topped with homemade whipped cream. Guaranteed to help you make it to midnight. This year, our Irish Coffees were extra delicious, as our whipped cream was made with Tahaa Vanilla Extract. MMMmmmm.
We ate our crab, visited with family and friends, and then as the clock struck midnight, we danced around the front yard clanging mixing bowls and drinking champagne. Someone else in the neighborhood was shooting off fireworks, a contribution for which I was most grateful.
The first day of 2017 was spent completing Oddgodfrey’s Annual Analysis, preparing our goal chart and cheating on our New Year’s diet by going to Mexican Food at one of my favorite Utah eateries: The Red Iguana. But, Andrew and I did split our meal. I was a little stressed out due to the fact that we were not packed to fly away to New Zealand yet, and after six weeks near reliable internet I still could not get my collection of 2016 photographs to transfer from my computer onto the cloud or onto a hard drive.
2017 Goals: Learn to use The Snap Chat and Instagram.
Saying goodbye to our parents, siblings, and the Adorable Niece was a little hard. So, to make it easier, as we left my parents house, I left them with a copy of our Trust, just in case we die somewhere in transit. “Okay now, it's time to leave. It’s been so much fun, guys! Thanks for the beautiful Christmas. Here’s a copy of our trust in case we die…. please make sure that Sonrisa gets taken back somewhere that she will meet good new owners….Ok, bring it in for hugs everyone! Ok, we love you, bye-bye!”
Then, we headed into Salt Lake to deliver the van back to Andrew’s mom, put Calamity Jane and Tang back in the garage, and eat lunch with Andrew’s family. Andrew has a cold, so he couldn’t hold the Adorable Niece, but I mugged on her as long as I could. Then we were even sent away with a selection of Adorable Niece pictures to hang on Sonrisa’s walls. Hugs all around, then out we go.
While I know Sonrisa has been nervous about us visiting home, I told her she has nothing to worry about. It started to snow as we transferred our luggage to the car. The cold air bites our nose and grabs at our lungs as we give more hugs and escape to the American Airlines check In desk. As I watched the guys de-ice the plane, I happily embrace the prospect of returning to summer in the Southern Hemisphere.
Here’s hoping 2017 will be another year of exploring beautiful, tropical locations and dabbling in creative pursuits to our hearts’ content.
P.S.! You have two more days to get your own goal planning sheet at the discounted Skin-In-The-Game-Rate. After the fifth, you are going to have to double down to make good on your promises to yourself. We all know that the longer you put off writing your objectives down, the less likely you are to get focused, get started and get energized. Make a bet on yourself this year.