L to R: Dave, holding Luke, and Jill and Emily
Peder, Sarah, Felix, and Aurelia
Jerry and Nancy
Pat, bless her heart, made a plum pudding for us. It was delicious!!
Pat, standing in her beautiful, new kitchen (It's not quite finished.).
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Yesterday, many from my family gathered at my Aunt Liz's house for a special time of visiting and eating a Christmas dinner together.
Since Aunt Liz passed away in April, many changes have happened to her home. First, during some heavy rains in the summer, a neighboring culvert collapsed, causing the creek to flood the lower level of her home. A week later, using fans 24/7 to dry out the walls, a fan over-heated and began to smoke - heavily - causing smoke to fill the entire house and billow out the windows. Neighbors called Pudge and then phoned the fire department. When the 3 big fire trucks and firefighters arrived, Pudge was already there and had actually walked through the downstairs, protecting his lungs with a cloth over most of his face. He told them the cause and warned them not to use the hoses and to put down the ax. Pudge has been a volunteer firefighter in the past and knew these measures weren't necessary and would only cause more damage to the home. Following this event, professional cleaners scoured the entire house and its contents. Pat and Pudge hired an architect and moved forward with some plans.
After a few walls were moved, construction for a new downstairs kitchen commenced. The most obvious change is the enlarged room and beautiful new cabinets! Who wouldn't be happy with this kitchen?! Currently, there is no carpet in the upstairs, as it was damaged by the smoke, and all of the pictures on the walls, plus window coverings, have been removed, cleaned, and are now packed away, since all of the walls will need to be painted.
It was so fun to have Diane and Dave return from their new home in New Jersey, and for their daughter, Jill, to come in from Denver. Emily, Ross, Ethan, and their new little boy, Luke, were there, too. Another treat was seeing Brian, Pat and Pudge's son, who stayed for a little while. What a cheerful guy is he! His laugh is infectious! Peder, Sarah, Aurelia and Felix, as well as Jerry and Jan were there, and I brought my dear friend, Nancy, along with me. A HUGE thank you to Pat and Pudge for hosting this wonderful time together. It was especially nice since they were only here from Arizona for 11 days and were flying back today!