Sunday, November 30, 2014

"Well, it needs work. I gotta' go."

The goat is back!  The Gävle Goat is standing tall once more, nervously looking around as always - a sure sign that Christmas is around!  We saw the live cam tonight, and set up our own goat in the living room on the fireplace, which is a terribly ironic place to put it.  But unlike the one in Sweden, ours has never caught fire.  Hopefully the one in Gävle won't catch fire either this year.  Let's take a year off, you malicious Swedes.  Can't we just have one Christmas without the fear of arson?

Another sign of Christmas:  Madison's advent chain is up and ready to go.  It has twenty-five links on it, each one decorated and numbered.  As we pull each one off, we'll be one more day closer to Christmas!

Another thing we did to celebrate the Christmas season that has officially arrived:  we saw the parade at the Magic Kingdom.  It was a Christmas-themed one, with Santa - and of course Elsa and Anna.  Just watching that makes you wish you were there, but this is one of the next best things.  There was a special live broadcast of the parade, so we were able to tune in online and catch the whole thing!

We didn't have as much time in the evening, but we did also get to watch "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer."  As a grown-up, this gets funnier each time you watch it, especially Santa.  He is so rude at times!  I think our favorite line from him comes after the elves are singing "We are Santa's Elves."  After a big musical production, he blurts out, "Well, it needs work.  I gotta' go."  And he's out the door as it slams behind him.

We finished our LEGO series this morning with a look at "The LEGO Movie," and everything went well for the big finish.  We didn't have a skit so much, but we did show a lot of clips from the movie.  It was so great hearing the auditorium full of kids all singing at full volume, "Everything is Awesome."

And it was.  The morning was pretty awesome, but Daddy needed to get home and get some rest.  Both he and Mommy woke up a lot last night - ever have one of those nights?  We didn't get much sleep for some reason.  But we rested a bit this afternoon.  Madison, meanwhile, was playing the GameCube some more.  She loves Mario Party, but there are other games on that too - I have a feeling we'll be doing some retro stuff for a bit.  I cannot wait to pop in the "Ocarina of Time," one of the best video games ever, maybe the best.

It was a fun day today, one that we all ended earlier because we have to get up earlier tomorrow.  We had a bit of play practice today, which seems to be coming along nicely.  Except for a few parts.  At those, Daddy just called out from the sound booth:  "Well, it needs work.  I gotta' go."

Saturday, November 29, 2014

That's a wrap!

Madison helped out today, wrapping some presents with Daddy.  These are for friends and family, and the significance of this is that she's never tried to wrap a present before, not the 'official' way.  Today, Daddy showed her how to measure the right amount of paper, and then how to fold the ends just right so that the present looked nice when wrapped.  Or, at least he did his best.  I am by no means an expert.  But Madison got the basic idea, and was helping in every way as we wrapped a few presents, and even put these presents under the tree.  More are coming soon, but we thought we'd try wrapping a little early.

We put the nutcrackers up too - Madison was telling Daddy where to place each one on the top shelf.  We arranged them, lining them up once again for another year to stand perched atop our great room, surveying the Christmas season below them.

This vacation has been nice, hasn't it?  We didn't have practice today, and in fact Daddy only made one trip out of the house.  It shouldn't have happened:  he made the trip for nothing.  This is due to the remarkably bad customer service at Staples.  This is a store in Cumming, and other locations too.  I'm assuming they actually sell staples there, but online they advertised an iPad mini for sale.  Online, their website told us that there was one left at that location in Cumming.  But Ronald Reagan said, "Trust but verify."  So we called up a guy there, and sure enough, he said he had it in his hands for us.  He asked when I'd be there, and I told him I would be there by 4:00.  I just wanted to make sure, I said, before I drove all the way over there.  That's called foreshadowing.  Because when I got there, sure enough, it wasn't there.  It was a DEMO model.  He made a mistake.  So did I for going there.  But the manager just made it worse by giving me of all people an attitude.  Seriously, I didn't raise my voice or do anything to suggest that I was mad about driving all the way over there and wasting all that time for nothing because of your bad customer service.  So the moral of the story is I'm through with Staples.  But not staples, because you need those in a stapler.

So what else happened today?  The GameCube happened.  Just recently, I got a SeaWorld game from Goodwill - it was for the GameCube.  It was such an obscure title that I had to pick it up.  The game itself left a bit to be desired, but I acknowledge that it is more of a novelty thing.  I'll plug it in again later and give it another chance.  But Madison was with me, and the two of us were up there in the playroom, discovering all these GameCube titles that Daddy had tucked away.  Like Mario Sunshine.  And Mario Golf.  And so we stayed up there, playing the GameCube for a long, long, long time.  We were so retro!  Madison hasn't had much experience with Peach and Mario, but I have a feeling that she'll be getting to know all of the gang a lot more in the coming days:  she's having a ball with this gaming system.  And so is Daddy of course!

The rest of the day involved packing away Thanksgiving stuff, cleaning that room up, and eating the last of the leftovers.  Today was the official last day of that - and these leftovers were still mighty tasty.

And so the day was over with.  We watched a few Christmas specials - "Kung Fu Panda" and "Ice Age" each had a Christmas themed special, so we popped those two in tonight.  And soon enough, it was time for bed.  It's been a nice break, actually.  These past few days have been fun hanging out together!  In other words, "That's a wrap!"

Friday, November 28, 2014


This afternoon we went to see a movie - the one we usually see on Thanksgiving night.  Our choice was pretty clear, having already seen "Big Hero 6" a few weeks ago.  This weekend's new release is "Penguins of Madagascar," who you can see in the photo above.  These guys are the best characters in the Madagascar movie series, although this movie was a step down in quality from "Madagascar 3."  We still enjoyed it though, Madison especially.  She also enjoyed the return of the ginormous popcorn bucket.  I'm not sure if we were able to finish it, actually.

The movie had its moments - our favorite scene involves a cricket.  The value of the experience was getting out of the house and seeing a movie together.  We did a bit of stalling beforehand, going to the bank and then off to Goodwill.  There, we actually got a few Christmas presents for some friends and cousins as well.  You always find the most obscure stuff there, some of it perfect for white elephant gifts.

Nana and Ba-Ba returned home this morning, wanting to get ahead of the surge of traffic for the weekend, all the folks returning back to their homes after spending time with family.  But before leaving, they were treated to a concert recital!

Madison did "Sleigh Ride" here, and "Oh Susana" as well.  Nana and Ba-Ba didn't leave until 10:00 am, which was fine - traffic this morning was probably pretty serious, as it was Black Friday.  Yes, this most insidious day of days!  Despite our best efforts, there was nothing worth going out to get - no sale amount was worth the battling, although some live for the thrill of such sport.  We looked, but just plain didn't see anything that was on sale that much to go invest any amount of energy into.  SO, that said, we spent the day largely here at the house, eating leftovers.  And playing games.  And just relaxing.  And not even thinking one bit about all the work that had to be done here or there.  Yes, it was one of those days.

Okay, we did a bit of housecleaning here or there.  But it wasn't much.  We've gone through about five cycles on the dishwasher, and finally got everything cleaned from yesterday.  Oy, that was a lot!  But today went by without anything of massive consequence happening, which was just fine with us.  Nana and Ba-Ba returned safely, which was great news.  We watched a few more Christmas movies, and the next thing you know, we were off to bed.

Yep, that's where I'm heading now...!

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Thanksgiving 2014

"It's all about that baste."  Here's the scene first thing this morning, right about that time when the entire house was beginning to smell like delicious turkey.  Every Thanksgiving without fail, the aroma of this holiday permeates through walls, drifting up and down hallways until the entire house is filled with this most wonderful of fragrances!

It's Thanksgiving, and today was a beautiful one.  It was a cold one, but that's okay - we had the fire in the fireplace, pretty much all day long, and more than enough wood.  Madison woke up this morning a bit concerned that she hadn't completed her list of 27 things she was thankful for.  This was a list she wanted to do at the beginning of November, writing down the things she was thankful for each day until Thanksgiving Day.

Here she is by the fireplace, getting that list done.  She wrote them all down, taking a while to think about each one as she jotted down her answers.  Meanwhile, Mommy was in the kitchen, making her usual masterpieces - like this here:

This is Mommy's cheese hedgehog, a yearly tradition for Thanksgiving.  Ye-Ye dives into this, once someone else has taken the first sampling.  He doesn't want to mess up the appearance, which of course is pretty awesome.  But inevitably, hunger speaks loudest and soon that hedgehog is a distant memory.  Here are a few other friends that join us at the table:

We now have three sets of these, believe it or not.  They are making a comeback at the grocery store, so their hard-to-find value has been downgraded.  We still love them, although we just use one set at the table.  We have about three or four other Thanksgiving salt and pepper shakers that have been donated to us over the years - two that are shaped like acorns, and another set that is a pumpkin and a turkey.  They all line up at the table, along with the name cards - this year, written by Madison.

This is hers.  These are from that Pinkalicious Thanskgiving book.  Inside were cards to fill out, although we had to use the color copier to make about four more this time around.  We had twelve guests today, and Madison filled out everyone's name, putting each card down for our guests.

And here's the table configuration.  This took a bit to figure out.  We didn't want to have the kids - if we can still call them kids - over at some separate table.  We wanted everyone together, so that's what we did.  Mommy and Daddy set up two tables, and put them in an 'L' formation, which seemed to work out for everyone, actually.  And soon enough, everyone arrived!

This was one of the best Thanksgiving Day celebrations we've had - one reason is that Aunt Shain (above) and her family were here with us.  Another reason was the food - Mommy really outdid herself today with some very good cooking.  And the rest of the family brought different items as well, so that there was quite a bit of food.  But with these two guys below, you can imagine there was probably just enough:

We had some nice music playing, a log on the fire, the trees lit up, and lots of conversation to go around.  No talk of politics or sports, so you can imagine things were quite pleasant!  Seriously, it was great to have everyone over.  And we all stayed together for a few hours too, with no one in a rush to get out the door.

Hannah got to experience a more traditional Thanksgiving this year, as I believe it is usually a little bit different each year for her in Florida with her other grandparents.  This time around, she was with Madison, who adores Hannah.  The two were frequently upstairs, checking out all the toys and largely spreading them out over the playroom, bedroom, and eventually the hallway.  We noted this when we went upstairs later - it was as if a Thanksgiving storm had swept in to do damage.

After some pies and ice cream for dessert, it was pretty much time for everyone to go.  It was getting darker, so we said our goodbyes.  Traditionally, we go out to see a movie - but not today.  We were tired, and generally wanted to stay indoors.  And why not?  We kept the fire roaring, and popped in a few Christmas movies.  Madison has been watching "The Santa Clause" movies, and we also watched "The Muppet Christmas Carol" before finally deciding it was time to turn in for the night.

We have so much to be thankful for, including this day itself.  It was a really good one.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Cat Poster

It was one of those days where we needed a motivational poster to plow through - but we did get Sunday's service all wrapped up for the most part.  The reason for this is so we can have off the next few days, and not have to worry about coming in at all.  This plan seems to be a good one.

The day was mostly spent preparing for tomorrow, for guests and for family.  The tables are getting set up, the food prepared, and the decorations hung up.  The service on Sunday is done as well.  Madison spent the day with Mommy, Nana and Ba-Ba at the house (although the grandparents did take an excursion to do some looking around for a new home up this way).

We'll have a lot of time to relax in the coming days, but today was necessary for getting it all set in place.  That said, I leave with this script for Sunday's service, our final service of the series, "Master Builders."

KidPak Adventures:  Master Builders
You are the Special

CUE TRACK:  7 Rufus

HOST walks out STAGE RIGHT, holding a few LEGO bricks.

HOST: “Just what is it about a LEGO brick?  We’ve had an incredible series for these past few weeks, and we’ve had one theme:  LEGO bricks.  We’ve seen your creations.  We’ve seen the video games.  We’ve even seen lots of LEGO figures.  And today, we’ll be taking a look at the best LEGO movie of them all – it’s called ‘The LEGO Movie.’”


HOST begins to put a few of the LEGO bricks together while speaking.

HOST:  “Like the toy itself, ‘The LEGO Movie’ is all about connecting.  And as we’ve seen from this series, we are made to connect with God, but we’re supposed to connect with each other as well.  Throughout this story, we meet a character who shows us the way to connect.  What’s his name?”


HOST: “Meet Emmet. Right in the middle of Bricksburg, we meet Emmet, just a normal guy in the normal world.  He represents all of us, trying to get along the best he can.  Let’s watch Emmet as he gets ready for his day.”



HOST:  “It’s so hard to make it through the day, but how does Emmet do it?  He follows the instructions.  In fact, everyone was doing the same exact thing.  Everyone was watching that show – what was it called again?”

CUE SLIDE: “Where’s My Pants?”

HOST:  “And everyone was paying for overpriced coffee.”

CUE SLIDE: “Larry the Barista”

HOST:  “And everyone was crazy about Taco Tuesday.”

CUE SLIDE: “Taco Tuesday”

HOST:  “But was we’ll find out soon enough, his instructions aren’t quite right.  And if you’re strictly following the way of the world, you’re probably doing it wrong as well. For example, lots of us watch the same television shows, and listen to the same songs.”


HOST: “ For a moment, Emmet remembers President Business tell everyone they’ll be put to sleep – and he starts to get worried.  But he completely forgets about any danger, because it’s easier to laugh with everyone else at ‘Where’s My Pants?’”

HOST:  “He needed to listen more closely. And we do to!  What’s the message in the songs we all listen to?  What’s the message being spoken in the television shows we watch?  This leads me to the first point.”


HOST:  “Read the right instructions.  This series, we’ve been looking at the most important instructions, those building blocks of faith that we should live each day by.  King David was a Master Builder – and he agreed with this completely.  Listen to what he said in Psalm 119:105.”

CUE SLIDE:  “PSALM 119:105”

HOST:  “Your word is like a lamp that shows me the way.  It is like a light that guides me.”


HOST: “Simply put, ‘Your Bible is filled with just the right blueprints to make it through life and say, ‘Everything is awesome!’

CUE SLIDE: “Emmet”

HOST: “Emmet’s journey becomes awesome when a few things happen.  First, he sees the bad guys for what they are.  Next, he meets a super team known as the Master Builders.  Unfortunately, those same bad guys are about to bust in to the scene.”



HOST:  “The Master Builders were pretty creative, weren’t they?  But their creativity was all over the place.  It’s amazing, but at the same time they just don’t play well together.  And in the end, only one part of that submarine survives.”

CUE CLIP 2:  THE BEDOUBLED COUCH (52:22 – 55:00)


HOST:  “Emmet shows us all how to do it, by using our gifts together with one common goal:  saving the world.  God made us all different, and all amazing.  But that takes us to our next point, which is part of the song.”


HOST: “Everything is cool when you’re part of a team.  God needs every part of the team to work together.  In our Bibles, Paul compared us to pieces of clay.”


HOST: “ Isn’t the potter free to make different kinds of pots out of the same lump of clay?  Some are for special purposes.  Others are for ordinary use.”

CUE SLIDE: “Emmet”

HOST:  “Some of us may feel like Emmet.  But don’t ever start thinking others are greater than you.  Emmet begins to feel down when he sees everyone else’s gifts.  I mean, how can you compete with Batman? 

CUE SLIDE: “Metalbeard”

HOST: “ Or Metalbeard?”

CUE SLIDE:  “Wyldstyle”

HOST: “And Wyldstyle is pretty cool, even though her name sounds like that of a DJ.  But after a visit with the Man Upstairs, Emmet realizes something that changes everything.  Let’s see what that is.”


CUE SLIDE: “Emmet”

HOST:  “It takes a visit with the Man Upstairs for Emmet to realize the obvious.  He is the Special.  But so are you.  That’s our final point.  It says this:”


HOST:  “You are the special.  You just have to believe in it, and maybe believe in it a little more.  Look at this famous scripture found in 2 Corinthians.”

CUE SLIDE:  “2 Corinthians 5:7 NIrV”

HOST: “ We live by believing, not seeing.”


HOST:  “Vitruvius may have been blind, but remember that we walk by faith and not by sight.  Even though you may not see it in yourself, God does.  And He thinks you are the most talented, most interesting, and most extraordinary person in the universe.  And you are capable of amazing things. You are the special.  It may sound like a cat poster, but it’s true.”


HOST:  “And that’s the message, built on a firm foundation: We must connect together in faith.  We must believe that we are specially designed to follow God’s directions and work together as a team.  We do it to save the world – you just have to believe that you are the Special!”

HOST:  “Let us pray.”

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Office Thanksgiving

Another Office Thanksgiving, and another chance to stop everything and enjoy each other's company.  And enjoy some food as well.  It's been a busy season, but these are always nice, with Christmas music playing and everyone dropping by to say hi - and sampling some of the food that's being brought in.  Josh always brings the turkey in, and it's delicious.  But so are the other items, of course.  And there's always plenty left over, so that's put in the fridge, or brought home for later.  But there's no way anyone can eat anymore, because we all pretty much leave there with extremely full tummies.

Mommy brings in her butternut squash soup, and for a time, we all hit the brakes on the whole 'busy season' thing.  It's just great to sit down and mingle, and of course Madison loves to do that!

Monday, November 24, 2014

Wah-he-koo and Oh-lu-cha

The temperature got unseasonably warm, unsettlingly warm actually.  It was startling to go from thirties to seventies so quickly - we suspect it has everything to do with the arrival of Nana and Ba-Ba from Florida.  They came up this afternoon, enduring quite a bit of heavy traffic - it's Thanksgiving, and a lot of folks are traveling to and fro.  But arrive safely they did, and there was quite a warm greeting that took place here.  Madison does not have school this week, and therefore could stay up late with them for a bit.  We even sat and watched a movie together, "The Grinch," which is mandatory viewing this time each year.  Madison requested it, so we had to watch it!

This afternoon, she was in quite a mood when we went to visit the chiropractor.  She was a giggle factory, despite the long wait in the waiting room.  She was entertaining all the other patients there with an elaborate game of 'I Spy,' and several other games as well.

Later on, we had ballet.  I'm not sure if the other parents knew there was actually ballet though.  The teachers certainly did - they were there and ready, but there just weren't many kids there today.  Madison had one classmate, so the ballet company joined two classes together.  This made the total population four.  Four kids.

Nevertheless, there was class.  This evens things out with the other classes during the week, as we had off on Labor Day some time back, and they did not.  However, this class in particular seemed to be more filler than anything.  Like that last week of school where everyone is just hanging out, waiting for it all to end.  Of course, for Madison, ballet is a lot of fun no matter what she's doing.  She had a great time.

Today we set out two of our Thanksgiving friends, Wah-he-koo and Oh-lu-cha.  These are Cabbage Patch Kids from 1983.  They are the American Indian Edition.  Because it was 1983, Oh-lu-cha has a mohawk hairstyle.  Of course, that's not the name of the hairstyle.  That's the name of an Indian tribe.  And it isn't even an Indian tribe from around here.  Perhaps Cherokee men did in fact have their hair shaved like Mr. T, but I don't know for sure.  I suspect it is more likely that these are made by people from White County.  They meant well.

ANYWAY, these two are authenti-genuine Cabbage Patch Kids, the kind that don't have plastic molded heads.  They still have their paperwork, and laminated tags to identify their names and what edition they are.  Also, there are even tags on their shoes to let the owners know that those shoes were in fact made in Cherokee, North Carolina.

Nana has sold a few of these Cabbage Patch Kids previously, each one for around $10,000.  I am not making that number up.  It is staggering to think that someone would pay that much money for a doll.  But Aunt Shain also sold one a few years ago for $8,000.  We don't know how much these two above are worth, but we'd sell them pretty quickly if we knew they had any sort of real value like that.  As they are from 1983, we suspect they do have value.  Also, there are two of them, a matching set.

At the same time, they are nice to have around the holiday of Thanksgiving.  And we can say we own a few Cabbage Patch Kids - this successfully fended off any thoughts of buying a new one when we went up to visit Babyland a few years back.  The thinking was that we already have a few, so why do we need one more.  This was a great defensive thought when faced with the idea of paying a couple hundred for another one for Madison.  Also, we actually have an Olympic one from 1984, but that one has a plastic face.  Madison has that doll in her room with her right now.

Graduating from White County, this is one of those things that you just know about:  Cabbage Patch Kids.  These dolls put White County on the map in the 80's.  White County is the home of the Cabbage Patch Kids, the ultimate Christmas gift item in the early 1980's.  Everyone seemingly just had to have one, and those earliest ones - the ones where Xavier signed their bottoms - those are the most valuable.  Babyland was pretty tacky in those days.  It still is to a certain extent.  But back then it was pretty fun to swing by.  We visited one time, and were asked to give the latest Cabbage Patch baby a name.  Daddy and a friend suggested the names 'Slagator' or 'Argoblastulus.'  The 'nurse' there sadly decided against these names, going with something more mundane instead.  This was her loss:  I would have bought a doll named Argobluastulus.  Just saying.  I wouldn't have paid $10,000 for it.  But maybe nowadays someone else would.

Anyway, we've been up to Babyland General a few times.  Roadside America calls it one of the scariest places on earth, in a tongue-in-cheek sort of way.  Which of course is why we love to drop by.

Yes, that's Daddy's heritage:  White County.  There's Babyland, and then there's Helen, Georgia.  Both of these gems in the same county.  So much to be proud of!

Sunday, November 23, 2014

How the Grinch Stole Thanksgiving

So today was a super busy day.  Really busy.

We started the day out with church, and a pretty fun service about being thankful - a closer look at Psalm 100, with a message entitled "Everything is Awesome."

Because it is.

And just for fun, Daddy wrote up a skit to kick off Thanksgiving week, one that features an old friend, the Grinch.  And yes, it kind of rhymes.  Emphasis on 'kind of.'

How the Grinch Stole Thanksgiving

CUE TRACK:  7 Rufus

Scattered on stage are a small table, three chairs, a remote control, a few sleeping bags, a can of shaving cream.

NARRATOR:            This story takes place not too far from here
                                    With LEGO friends, our cast, and lots of good cheer!

                                    They’re at the academy, and it’s all A-okay!
                                    As they set up for a pretty awesome Thanksgiving Day.

ROBBIE and BURT enter STAGE RIGHT, carrying grocery bags, placing them on a small table at STAGE LEFT

NARRATOR:                        “Why, Robbie and Burt there are in a good mood
                                    They’re thinking about all that Thanksgiving food!

ROBBIE and BURT take some groceries out, placing them on table, as described below.

NARRATOR:            “They’ve got cranberries, dressing.  And those look like Doritos?
                                    There’s Spam.  And there are cookies.  And oh look:  taquitoes.

OFFSTAGE:                          “Hey, taquitos!”

NARRATOR:            “Right.  Though our friends seem to be off to a good start
                                    This holiday is really about having a thankful –

JOEY runs in, interrupting.

JOEY:                         Football!

NARRATOR:            That’s not what I was going to say.  But it looks like fun.
                                    Throwing the pigskin, and going out for a run

                                    But wait?  If you’re going outside, don’t you need a coat?

JOEY:                         Naw, we’ll watch it on tv all day! Now where’s that remote?

JOEY finds remote on stage, and high-fives QUINCY.  CAMILLE and GRACE enter STAGE RIGHT, holding newspapers with Black Friday ads on them.

NARRATOR:            Okay, that’s crazy.  But here comes the gals.
                                    Tell them about Thanksgiving.  It’s all about –

CAMILLE:                 Sales!

NARRATOR:            Do what?  I know those sales are just once a year.
                                    But you’ll have to stay up all night, with some camping gear.

CAMILLE grabs the sleeping bags on stage, hoisting them up a moment.

CAMILLE:                 No problem!

NARRATOR:            Oh, great.  Well, you can see here what Thanksgiving means
                                    It’s football.  It’s weird food…

CAMILLE:                 And Black Friday dreams!

NARRATOR:            Okay, now I’m depressed.  I mean seriously – what’s up?
                                    Is this the true meaning of Thanksgiving?

ALL:                           Yup!

NARRATOR:            Now this doesn’t seem right, but before we protest
                                    Let’s see just what happens, as our friends go to rest.

CAST drops in place, pretending to sleep.


NARRATOR:            It was the night before Thanksgiving, and all around town
                                    All our friends were just sleeping

ALL:                           Shhhhh!

NARRATOR:            I’ll try to keep it down.

ALL nod, and go back to sleep.

NARRATOR:            It seems that our holiday is in quite a pinch.
                                    But look who’s arriving!  It’s our old friend…

CUE TRACK:  8 No Ticket


NARRATOR:                        The Grinch?

GRINCH puts hand over mouth as if laughing to himself.

NARRATOR:                        But you just stole Christmas – now this day is next?
                                    What is it about Thanksgiving that has you so vexed?

                                    Then the Grinch pointed out all the things on stage
                                    How we’ve forgotten Thanskgiving – it filled him with rage!

GRINCH wanders over to JOEY and QUINCY, and grabs shaving cream.

NARRATOR:                        So he started to do his diabolical scheme
                                    And replaced Joey’s football, with fresh shaving cream

GRINCH takes football from JOEY, and puts shaving cream in JOEY’s hands.

NARRATOR:            Oh my, this could get nasty.  At least more or less.
                                    Because when he wakes up, his face will be a mess!

GRINCH tosses football backstage, and then goes over to ROBBIE and BURT

NARRATOR:                        And then the Grinch visited Robbie.  And Burt.
                                    And upon Robbie’s hand, there was a shaving cream splurt!

GRINCH puts shaving cream in ROBBIE’S hand as well.

NARRATOR:                        Oh my!  It looks like he’s having some fun
                                    But there’s no doubt about it:  He’s a mean one!

GRINCH goes to steal food, putting it back stage.

NARRATOR:            Case in point: that old Grinch took all of the food
                                    And usually, we would think him rather rude

                                    He stole enough food to start a delicatessen,
                                    But in doing so, I think he’s teaching a lesson

                                    Which is why he went over to Camille and Grace
                                    Oh, you should have seen the look on his face!

                                    Oh, wait.  You can.  He’s standing right there.
                                    Anyway, he quietly snuck up upon the pair.

GRINCH takes their newspaper ads.

                                    He took all their papers, and with his eyes all agleam
                                    He filled Camille’s hand with fresh shaving cream!

GRINCH fills CAMILLE’S hand with shaving cream.

NARRATOR:                        And then he quietly laughed, and soon snuck away
                                    As our friends all dreamed of Thanksgiving Day


NARRATOR:                        But it’s actually here, as you will soon see
                                    So let’s scream “WAKE UP!” After I count to three.

                                    ONE… TWO… THREE!


CAMILLE, JOEY and ROBBIE wake up startled, putting their hands (filled with shaving cream) to their faces (not eyes), and everybody rises with general chaos on stage.

NARRATOR:                        They were all quite startled!  And look at their faces!
                                    And they saw their stuff gone from its regular places.

CAST looks saddened.

NARRATOR:                        This was quite a surprise.  Their Thanksgiving had died!
                                    They looked quite forlorn.  So they sat there and cried.

CAST cries loudly, overdoing it.

NARRATOR:            Stop it!  You’re overdoing it!

CAST:                         Sorry.

CUE TRACK:  9 Welcome Christmas

NARRATOR:                        And just when they thought their Thanksgiving was through
                                    Someone small entered there: ‘twas Michael Lou Who!

MICHAEL walks out amongst CAST, who forms semicircle around him, facing stage.

NARRATOR:                        And these words that he uttered are remembered to this day
                                    Listen very carefully, my friends.

MICHAEL:                Fahoo Doray.

NARRATOR:            What?

MICHAEL:                Fahoo Doray.

CAST starts swaying back and forth to music, as vocals start.

NARRATOR:            Oh!  It’s not about food, or sports, or sales!
It’s about being grateful for all the details

that God fills in for us.  It’s what Thanksgiving’s about.
                                    It’s about being thankful, without any doubt!

MICHAEL joins semi-circle, all holding hands and swaying to music. GRINCH enters STAGE RIGHT

NARRATOR:            The Grinch he peeked in.  Did he cause misery?
                                    Not even close!  For the sight he did see

                                    was wondrous and touching!  He was glad he came back.
                                    And as the others saw him, he heard one say,

JOEY:                         “Attack!”

JOEY starts to rush at Grinch, but is held back by the others.

NARRATOR:                        No, Joey!  Down, Joey, down!

CAST whispers at JOEY.

JOEY:                         Sorry.  Got confused for a moment there, but I’m okay now.

ROBBIE:                    Man, that was crazy.  You just had a cow!

NARRATOR:                        So they all learned the lesson.  One you’ve learned today.
                                    That it’s all about being grateful on Thanksgiving Day.

GRINCH joins semi-circle on stage.

NARRATOR:            And as you can see, they’ve shown thankfulness here
                                    Something you should do too – and do it all year.

                                    So Happy Thanksgiving, to you all of our friends
                                    With that lesson learned, our story now… ends.

Madison enjoyed the skit a lot, especially the bits where the characters got shaving cream on their faces.  But she also got the point, that Thanksgiving isn't about all the things listed above.  It's about being thankful, which is fairly obvious as it is in the title of the holiday itself.  And yet you can't help but think sometimes if it has been forgotten.

Moving on!  Next Daddy was on hand to observe the kids in the choir singing their numbers for the upcoming Christmas play.  He was even speaking to the kids and over them, reminding them of the wonderful job they are doing, and how big of an event this will be.  The scene sort of reminded me of when Cary Grant and Loretta Young visit the children's choir in "The Bishop's Wife."  We get so caught up in being busy that we sometimes miss out on the wonderful things in life, like listening to a large choir of children practicing for an upcoming play.  Yes, it's a large choir - 88 kids is the max right now.  Not sure how to fit them all on stage, actually (with the other players in place as well).

Anyway, after this, Daddy went home for a quick bite to eat.  And to touch base with the family.  It's a busy time this season, but the next week will be a little less busy, as it is Thanksgiving week.  That's why today was so packed with activity.

Yes, back to the church Daddy went for yet another practice, this time for characters with speaking roles.  That would include Daddy, actually.  As he's partially a director, and of course the writer, this went on for some time.  We left the building at 9:00, and Daddy was ready to head straight to bed, actually.

But it was a productive day.  And some great news here is that we don't have to get up early tomorrow.  Also, the temperature will be warmer as well.  A front is coming through, which explains the excessive rain we had today.  It dumped buckets and buckets - so much rain that it has delayed Nana and Ba-Ba's trip north to visit us.  They'll be here tomorrow, riding up in much safer weather.

And so there's a day.  It was a good one though.  And can you believe there is only one LEGO service left?  It seems like only yesterday we were still planning "Under the Sea."  Time is relentless, but I think we can keep up!