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"Life doesn't have to be perfect to be wonderful."
- Unknown

"That which does not kill you, makes you stronger."
- Handed down through the ages.

"Life's tough. It's even tougher when you're stupid."
- John Wayne

Happy New Year!

Have you broken that New Year's Resolution yet or are you still holding strong?
I think it's safe to say that we're both doing well this year and haven't broken ours . . . only because we didn't make any! Normally I enjoy making one or two promises that I do truly try to hold true to (which only lasts a couple of months, depending on what they are), but this upcoming year just seems still too busy. Maybe once we're in the house and completely settled and things are "back to normal" (ha!) - maybe then I'll start New Year's Resolutions again.
Until then, though . . . .
We don't usually find ourselves with 3 social engagements within 6 days, but the New Year season was good to us non-social-butterflies this year. After Christmas Eve and Christmas Day activities, we hardly had time to catch our breath before we were off again. Good, new-found 2005 friends invited us over for an evening of dinner on the 26th where we watched the lights dance on the tree (since we didn't have one this year) and sang carols around the piano. The entree was stuffed, oven-roasted chicken, and neither of us have EVER had such tender chicken in our lives! I didn't think it was possible! I ate too much and made myself exceedingly uncomfortable, but a person could hardly help it!
Friday night brought a superb invitation from another couple we have also had the joy of getting to know better in 2005. It was the husband's specialty that night on the menu: a French meat pie that is traditionally only served at the New Year. The recipe was handed down from his grandmother and the other old women from the family's roots in Quebec. Now, you know that we're not big meat eaters, but that, too, was OUT of this world! I think I could eat a slice of that every week - forget "just during the New Year"! We and another guest had terrific conversation and lots of laughs with them. The boys (both of French Canadian descent) went head-to-head (pun intended) comparing their fur hats: skunk for you-know-who and beaver for our host.
Then, on Saturday - New Year's Eve day - we hosted a third set of new friends acquired this past year (2005 was GOOD to us!) and their precious 3-month old daughter. They hadn't seen the new house and garage since the house was just a slab, so there was plenty to show them. Then we all strapped on our snowshoes and hiked the trail down to the river and the international border. We'd gotten a few inches of snow the previous day (Tom plowed that morning), and it was stuck to every single branch and twig - gorgeous! We returned from our hike right at dark and then headed down here for dinner (soup and dumplings), a couple of Christmas presents, and coziness around the fire. We hope to make it an annual event with them during the holiday season. (We also learned how to mix a new - to us - seasonal drink: eggnog with 7-Up?????)
The plowtruck has been giving us some headaches lately, and, with our mechanic out of town for a wedding, my husband is slowly but surely morphing into a true Northwoods Jack-of-all Trades (a basic male - and female! - requirement for living up here). Claiming for years that he works "with wood and not metal" he recently took it upon himself (necessity is the mother of invention or, in this case, action) to fix first the linkage on the 4-wheeler (the automatic gear shift was not in sync with the transmission) and then the plowtruck. He replaced the part suspected to be the problem (thanks, Dad) and then tinkered with another part that wasn't doing what it was supposed to be either. And, lo and behold (knock on wood), everything's working smooth as silk! That man impresses me more each day! :)

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