Blue Sky

the hunts in prague

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Christmas in Lawrenceville (2): The Greatest Blog Entry Ever

If only you could have been there, dear readers. The images will help, but just can’t do it justice. Here’s some background: Andrew’s fiancee Melissa is a karaoke DJ at a biker bar called Mickey Dee’s in Covington, GA, which is kind of like Cheers in that everybody there knows your name (if you’re Melissa and Andrew, and if you’re with them it’s like you’re family). So Thursday night, after the Elberton festivities, we returned to Lawrenceville and headed down for some family karaoke fun. It was, perhaps, the birth of a great new holiday tradition.

Melissa (fiancee, not sister) started off by showing us how it’s really done.

“Sweet Caroline.” After less than one drink.

Cindi is a big Carole King fan. Here is “I Feel the Earth Move.”

“Son of a Preacher Man” just seemed so appropriate.

“A Boy Named Sue.” Fast becoming Bill’s specialty.

Our first blog video: Check out the sibling act.

“Bust A Move.” Break it down for me, fellas.

Other highlights from the set list:

  • “It’s Your Love” by Andrew and Melissa (fiancee)
  • “John Deere Green” by Andrew and Melissa (sister)
  • “What’s Goin On” by Jake
  • “Beverly Hillbillies Theme” by Mrs. Patrick (with the best dancing of the night)
  • “Me & Bobby McGee,” Melissa (fiancee)’s specialty

We’re already making plans for next time.

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Christmas in Elberton

Jake’s Grandmary (paternal grandmother) has a great house in Elberton, GA that my grandfather designed, and at Christmas she assembles an impressive array of near and distant relatives.

All 4 of the kids in my grandmother’s family are still living, and usually they all make an appearance during the holidays. Today one brother and his wife weren’t able to make it. But here are Grandmary (85, in green), her older sister Augusta (91, black sweater), younger brother Crawford (80), and his wife Jane. It’s really fun to be around all of them– they still joke and fuss with each other like kids!

Jake with his dad and brother Paul. This year for Christmas my dad put a bunch of home videos on DVD, from my grandparents’ wedding in the 40s to about 2000. Dad’s a videographer, so we have more family videos than the average. Maybe more than the Kennedys. We’re looking forward to watching some old stuff.

There’s also a good cousins picture that I’ll add when I get it from Paul. Because everybody in the blogosphere is so interested in random family pictures, right?

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Christmas in Warner Robins

The next stage of our journey took us to Warner Robins, where EDIMGIAFAD (Every Day In Middle Georgia Is Air Force Appreciation Day).

Jake’s sister Kelsey entered the digital age with her first MP3 player.

This is a selection (a selection, mind you) of some of the goodies Hunt got this Christmas. Not all of them have arrived, and not all that have arrived are pictured. Actually many of his presents were mislabeled, which resulted in various family members opening presents that were then taken away from them and given to us. Bwahahahaha. Note that there is a decided Bulldog theme.

Now the kid pictures commence, so get ready! This is our niece Celia (not to be confused with Celia Kulp, who also makes frequent blog appearances). Here she is riding Trigger, a present from Nene (Jake’s grandmother, Celia’s great-grandmother).

Celia and her Nene.

Celia and her Papa (Jake’s stepdad Ken).

Celia and her Aunt Melissa.

Tuesday night we had dinner with Ken’s sister Susan and her clan (Fred, Emily and Amy), and also Jake’s cousin Becky. Here’s the big group shot. (In the white jacket is Jake’s sister Lauren, Celia’s mom.)

Christmas in WR is still in progress with more family yet to visit, so stay tuned!

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Christmas in Lawrenceville

Our grand tour of the state of Georgia commenced on Christmas Eve, which we spent with the Nashes.

For years the Nashes and Childers (family friends) have decorated cookies on Christmas Eve. This year was even more exciting than usual because we have some real live kids now: Melissa’s brother Andrew’s fiancee’s girls Sidney and Annina. (Got that?)

Andrew and his two Melissas: sister and fiancee. Over Melissa Hunt’s shoulder is Julie, her best friend from Lawrenceville.

After the Christmas Eve service Bill, Cindi and Jake (none of whom are pregnant) enjoyed Godiva chocolate martinis. I have determined that Godiva martinis are one of the best things that has ever happened. Ever.

Now to Christmas morning. This is a home-made “Jonathan Edwards Is My Homeboy” shirt from Bill & Cindi. Bill got the idea after reading an article in Christianity Today about Calvinism gaining in popularity among young Christians. This will be great for the first day of my Jonathan Edwards elective next month!

Speaking of chocolate martinis… look out, Charlotte!

Bill got one serious gourmet waffle iron, which immediately stopped the present opening until we had sampled its wares. Every bit as good as you can imagine!

M and Cindi in their matching coats.

M and Cindi in their matching vests.

M also got some ear wraps for her early-morning walks. I personally enjoyed the leopard print.

Christmas morning we also went to Andrew et al’s house, where the girls were delivered their very own princess table and chairs from Mr. Bill & Ms. Cindi. We think they were pleased.

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Christmas in Charlotte

Christmas fell on the 23rd this year at our house. We always have spaghetti and meatballs on (our) Christmas Eve, but this year was especially special because Jake had time to make everything from scratch, an ambition he’s had for a couple of years. In other words, you’ll have to suffer some cooking shots before getting to the interesting stuff.

The ingredients don’t get any more raw than this. I also learned that good tomatoes are more expensive than I thought.

Mmm… meatballs.

This was my first time obeying the rule that you don’t cook with wine you wouldn’t drink. With one non-drinker in the house there was good wine to spare.

I think this year’s was my favorite tree we’ve had.

It really looks like whoever’s gifts are on the right side of the table got the raw end of the deal, but she assures me she doesn’t feel that way.

The last Christmas shot with just the two of us! (Note the new brunette locks on Face.)

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It’s Hard Out Here for a Chef

Jake’s been working off-and-on on his pizza technique. If you go with store-bought dough there’s no trouble, but homemade (OK, bread machine made) presents some challenges. Spreading it out on the stone (which I’ve learned has to be preheated) takes some doing. Then I have a tendency to pile on the toppings, and you have to be sure the dough gets crispy enough to handle the load. Anyway, Saturday night there was some progress. #1 (pre-bake) was creatively shaped, but #2 (post-bake) was a little more professional-looking. Grilled chicken, sausage, red onions and herbs.