One of the highlights of my trip home for Christmas was getting to meet the beautiful Rose Coughlin – the daughter of my oldest friend Kimberly. Our girls are almost exactly a year apart with summer birthdays, just like Kim and I were growing up.  It was so much fun to finally get everyone together.  To many years of our girls playing “house” and “school.”

DartmoorLane 2


Tommy and Kaya are away this week celebrating the holidays with his extended family but I had to come home to go back to work.  It’s pretty lonely around here but Tommy has been nice enough to send me photo updates of their adventures.

Meanwhile at home, I’ve worked a lot, done laundry, took a bubble bath, drank lots of tea (for the cold/sore throat that Kaya gave me as a going away present), played my trombone for the first time in about 5 years, watched Glee, took down the Christmas lights, unpacked from vacation, and slept through the night for two nights in a row.  It’s been a surprisingly pleasant change of pace, but definitely not preferable to having the family around.

Here’s a sample photo update from Kaya at the Vindlers’ house:


There’s Only One

My Dad has spent the first few years of his retirement restoring an old World War II era jeep.  This was our first visit since it became a finished product.  I failed to snap a photo of the matching helmet he got for Christmas, but he is now prepared for the Lake of the Woods drone attacks.



We spent the first weekend of the month celebrating Tommy’s birthday in western North Carolina.  A big thanks to Grandma Barbara and Aunt Laura for watching Kaya for the weekend.  Here’s Tommy showing off the overcast skies and overcrowded landscape that we experienced during our stop at the Biltmore.