Friday, December 14, 2018

Christmas Potluck & Bunco

It's ODD not to have a chapel staff Christmas Party, Chapel Party, PWOC (Protestant Women of the Chapel) Christmas Party, Wing Christmas Party and 8-10 Squadron Christmas Parties to attend.  Odd indeed.  Tonight was our one and only "Christmas" party.  

We donned our holiday apparel and prepared to have fun hosting a Christmas Potluck and Bunco night at church.  It was a lighthearted evening  in a season of rushing for those who could fit it into their schedules. 
Opposites attract? 
The evening began with dinner.  This gave us time to sit and visit.  I was a bit worried there may not be enough food. I heard a couple remark we had enough food to feed the whole church. 

Bunco usually has four rounds/ 6 games each round. Last month Bunco was 3 1/2 hours....we added a potluck and a white elephant exchange and weren't sure how long it would all take. We settled on playing two rounds. We were done and cleaning a bit before 9 p.m.  just under 3 hours.  The timing was perfect for a snowy, winter night at the end of a long week. 

For prizes, everyone brought a white elephant gift; everyone went home with a "prize." It will be amusing to watch which groups are returned at future Bunco nights. 

White Elephant Gift tip number 1 - be sure you know which gifts your wife is trying to whisk out of the house....and don't select one of them when it's your turn to pick a prize. 

Laughing with those you share pews with on Sunday? Priceless! 

Ms. Bonnie decided she would like the ammo Robert had chosen. 
Highlights of the evening were meeting a new couple I'd not previously connected with on Sunday, sharing dinner with folks I could spend years with; and laughing, HARD together during the gift exchange. 

The kids had a youth lock in going at the same time. They had a great time. Stacia remarked, "It's the most tired and most awake I've ever been." I think she may have extrovert tendencies. ::snort:: 
He's not the Scrooge he likes to pretend to be! 

Questions - Questions

WHEW! What a busy time summer and fall are in Alaska!

We added to the normal madness of felling dead trees, splitting wood, building coops, planting gardens, hiking, filling the freezer with salmon...a trip to California and Oregon.

During the crazy pace it seemed quite reasonable to put quick blurbs on Facebook  - the thought being it would capture a few ideas which could grow into blog posts when there was more time. Alas, Facebook thoughts get buried under the weight of more Facebook thoughts.....

And when the winter came....instead of the slow pace I remembered from last year...came women's ministry conferences, increased outside of the home school commitments for Alex and Stacia, teaching two weekly studies and one online study - hey that makes 3, new evaluations for Michael, men's ministry and hosting a weekly life group - which finally grew. There has also been lots of time with grand blessings. Winter also brought the absence of MY camera - which has been taken over by a budding photographer. I have tried to take photos with my phone - but they are terrible quality. I've discovered taking a daily photo (or dozen) kept me mindful of highlights of the day and motivated me to blog.

For a while last year I was blogging and vlogging with videos nearly every day. It took more time than I want to carve out for such things.

Then, too, it's been hard for me to define my audience now that most the kids live here and Mom doesn't read it daily....and suspect I'm pregnant when I don't blog.   In my heart of hearts, I know Michael is right....the blog is a family journal and the audience is our family....whether they are HERE or not....they may appreciate the record in future years....

That brings me to one of my concluding thoughts....Blogger has started freezing blogs. Folks simply can't open their blog, nor post to it. They can't save it or print it out or access it. I had PLANNED to print out our blogs...but I decided I wanted to do some editing so it looked "prettier" and wasted less space (resulting in less pages to buy) -  it is slow going. I've not printed a book in several years - o.k. six years. I need to get printing.  Maybe I can take any chicken profit and pour it into buying blog give you an idea it was taking 4 of the max paged books a year to print one year of the blog....$300 - 400 per year.   Others mention the blogs they can't access are ones where they've not been posts, no visitors, no activity....blogger shuts down.  And so.....I ponder.....

Image result for questions

Could I not keep a blog like journal in word - away from the internet as I'm no longer sure of my audience? I need to make sure to keep "active enough" on the blog that blogger doesn't close my blog before it's printed.  What would be the quickest way to at least "save" the posts? Each one copied into a word document? That will take some time (maybe I need to hire an assistant). What is the best way to "catch  up," as this is supposed to chronicle our family's life? Should I do one monthly post for each of the missing months? They would be LONG. Should I just pick the key things from the past months (i.e. chickens, selling parents homes, sorting through things, adjusting to life without a mom, the approaching due date of a sweet new grand, earthquake, parties, new opportunities, update on the elder Gherkins) to blog and not try to sum up month by month?  I miss most that I've lost the daily chronicling of  Bella, Gideon and Benny's growth. Such a sweet time to have them all close.

How would you attack it if you had 5 months of daily blogs to catch up? What are the advantages and disadvantages of an online platform versus word on the laptop? Would the world end if the blog went away before I got it saved?