OK Google, Merry Christmas

Pants
Pants

The past week or so has been a whirlwind of festive activity. So some of this may be out of order or whatever. *shrug* A while back, bdot and I went to First Light with the SiL and family. It was pretty interesting. Clearly a ton of work went into it. The paths within the recreated site were all lined with hand lit lights; thousands of hand lit lights. They would periodically fire off guns and cannons, which would scare the bejesus out of me. I wandered up to the church – one of Canada’s national shines. It was a beautiful old church. I’m sure it has many stories to tell. I was looking for the native drummers. Sadly, I found them as we were leaving, so I only got a cursory look and couldn’t partake. Sigh. They had many exhibits, solid fireworks, a feisty owl and much festive spirit. It was an informative, historical event. I really enjoyed it.

So it is nearly the new year, and I’m STILL waiting for marks. I handed in projects months ago without marks. Isn’t the point of grading to get feedback on your progress so you can apply it moving forward? It is getting ridiculous. I may e-mail the chair. This has to be better.

Christmas. It was primarily over three days, we hosted dinner here Christmas eve, Christmas day was at my sister’s and Boxing day was at my SiL’s. A busy but enjoyable three days. Bdot did an incredible job of bringing our home into the festive season. Shockingly we didn’t get a ‘real tree’ this year, but it was okay. Bdot decorated the room with plenty of lights and Christmas decor and the room felt perfectly seasonal. She did decorate the ‘fake tree’ on the main floor and it was a stunning, sophisticated, gem. Check this magic out:

2018 Christmas Tree
2018 Christmas Tree

My mother and Bdot’s joined us for a lovely turkey dinner. It was a quieter night. We relaxed in the evening and watched Office Christmas Party. It had some laughs but I don’t think I’d rush to watch it again.
The dog was very anxious to get opening presents Christmas morning. She didn’t seem to care about the presents. She just enjoyed the act of ripping the gift open with you. She got plenty of work. Our kitchen is now connected to Google Home. We are still learning what it can and can not do. It is pretty nice to have a handsfree way of communicating and playing music while cooking. Although it does much more. Apparently, it can be connected to our squeezeboxes, so I’ll have to figure that out at some point. I recently learned that the Chromebook I had, the Lenovo N21 will probably not be getting the upgrade which will allow it to use Android apps. *sad horn* So that was disappointing as it really limits the usefulness of the device. That limitation however, is perfect for my Mom who just needs browser capabilities. Soooo, after a few tutorials and some explanation, she has taken it on. That left me with the quest for a replacement. Ugh. Chromebooks come with a broad range of capabilities and prices. I wanted a lot and wanted to pay a little – so there was going to be compromises made. I really wanted a backlit keyboard. The N21 has black keys on a black laptop. It is impossible to use at night without significant lighting. I usually don’t use overhead lights in the mancave so… but after some thought, maybe the laptop was metal and the keyboard black, it wouldn’t be so bad. So, long story short, after significant internal deliberation, I settled on the Acer 14 – C83-431-C6RY. Lovely naming conventions Acer :P. No it doesn’t have a backlit keyboard. Actually, very few Chromebooks are. It does have a quad-core CPU, 14″ FHD IPS screen, runs both linux and android apps and 32G of storage (most have 16G). Bottom line, I’m really enjoying it. It is really light, hopefully I can find a way to use it at school – as it is significantly lighter than the Gaming/Work Dell I have. (But it of course won’t run Adobe products, so… we’ll see….) It is capable, light, machine, so far I’m very happy with it. I got bdot two handmade resin pendants (one with a yarn kit) and an Obus back massager for her long commutes to downtown. So far, the back massager is a hit.
We only had Stevo for one night. When we went to my sister’s he went to his and then off to the cottage so, we had a rather truncated visit this year.
Oh yes.
Oh yes.

My sister hosted dinner Christmas day. JP made a turkey and my Mom brought everything else. Their home is certainly different now. You are no longer greeted with barking dogs as your walk up to their door. Their new dog Willow is much more relaxed and rather silent. I quite enjoyed playing with the new dog. It is soft and fuzzy and (like a Vizsla) can’t wait to snuggle. We had a beautiful walk outside – just down the road from their house. They actually have some snow, and there was a light snowfall as we walked. It was a perfect Christmas activity. The evening was fun. The debate over who bit the donut was a reoccurring theme. Dinner was yummy. I overate like crazy. I thought I was going to burst.
The last Christmas event was at my SiL’s Boxing day. As always, it is a low key chill day… Bdot brought her amazing Chicken Enchilada Casserole. The boys (and everyone) played with *pop* nerf-like guns all afternoon. I spent part of the aft in Bill’s mancave listening to old-school metal. Krokus! He played the original release of The Cult’s Love Removal Machine. (The album was posthumously released by the band – they originally didn’t release it as it wasn’t the sound they were going for – Amen – it was saccharin garbage and took the soul out of the music….) Another fun afternoon with family.
The rest of the week has been pretty chill. I know I’ve wanted some downtime. We did get out to see the incredible animated film Spider-man – Into the Spider Verse. Wow. It blew me away. The story, the characters, the breathtaking animation. Wow… Quite possibly the best animated film I’ve seen.

The Sabres continue to flounder along. They have slammed back to Earth and can’t seem to find any secondary scoring. NYI tonight… The Canadian juniors are undefeated with their biggest game tonight v. Russia. We are off to Bonnie’s tonight for NYE. It will be a packed house. Phew…