A brief trip to Michigan

Mike and I had a great trip to Michigan for three days the weekend before Christmas.  Sadly (or maybe not?) we didn’t get many pictures of our time there.  The point was to see people and “be in the moment”, so photography was limited.  Also, Mike didn’t want to take his big camera since that’s a pain to carry around and bring through the airports and everything.

The flights were pretty good, although flying through O’Hare the weekend before Christmas was asking for lots of delays (which we definitely experienced).  🙂  At least O’Hare was pretty and decorated for Christmas!

O'Hare

O’Hare

 

Although the trip was fast (fast enough that we never really did switch to Eastern Standard Time and ended up staying up till 2am every night we were there), it was good to see family, particularly near the holidays.

Since we got back, we’ve been laying low.  Mike got a bit of a cold, so we’ve been doing low-energy things like watching movies.  We just finished “2001: A Space Odyssey“.  Surprisingly, this movie is a lot better than I expected.  It reminds me of trance music in that it doesn’t rush ANYTHING.  With Trance music you listen to it measure after measure and wait for a change… but you only hear very subtle changes.  With “2001: A Space Odyssey”, you wait and wait for climax scenes and they elusively evade you and continue instead with long, drawn-out scenes accompanied by symphonic music.  I’m not joking.  I think (hope?) it’s a testament to my increased level of maturity that I actually enjoy the more drawn-out scenes.  It’s certainly a refreshing change from modern movies in which something has to happen every 37.2 seconds or else the short-attention-spanned audience gets bored.

We also watched Bronson (also a movie Mike chose) about the most violent criminal in British history.  It was a strange film… very psychedelic and highly stylized.  I would almost say it was like a Wes Anderson film except that, unlike Wes Anderson movies, Bronson was heavily based on an actual person’s life and was therefore bereft of a lot of the crazy twists and turns characteristic of Wes Anderson’s movies.

To counteract all of this intenseness, I suggested watching the National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation, a completely comedic movie with no hidden messages or meanings (except possibly to avoid hosting Christmas?)  Mike tolerated the movie, although it was definitely not the kind of movie he would have chosen.  It’s been interesting to watch so many movies in a few days… we rarely watch one more than every couple of weeks.

Apart from movie-watching so that Mike can rest up and get over his cold quickly, Mike has been spending some time processing the remainder of the pictures from our England/Ireland trip.  He’s hoping to get them done in 2014 so that he can start 2015 with a clean slate… no picture processing to-do items in it!  He got the third set of pictures posted yesterday!  Here’s a link in case anyone’s interested in seeing them: England and Ireland III .

We’ve also been working through some cat issues.  Piper’s cat sitter said she was as good as gold while we were gone, and she didn’t seem traumatized in the slightest when we returned.  However, she’s seemed low-energy (maybe like she has a cat-cold to match Mike’s cold?) and she’s done some inappropriate urination including (but not limited to) my yoga mat.  I genuinely wish I could understand the way her brain works.  I’m trying to give her some treats now after using the litterbox to make sure she knows that’s “good” behavior but she’s not an eager-to-please dog; she’s a queenly cat.  I’m not sure she’s getting the message.

Although I haven’t been working for the past two weeks, it’s crazy how quickly the time has been going by.  The first half week was cleaning the apartment (which could actually already stand to be cleaned again), the next week-ish was devoted to Christmas shopping for our nieces and our Michigan trip.  Mike has had the cold since getting back from Michigan, so we’ve been in low-energy mode since then.  I have finished reading several books for my yoga teacher training, so I guess I’ve been at least a little productive.  I didn’t do crazy after-Christmas shopping, but I did buy new running shoes in preparation for marathon training.  I also bought a new yoga mat since Piper ensured that my old one needed to be thrown out.

Mike has been finishing up an old project at work that he’s been working on for over a year, so going into 2015 it’s looking like he’ll be 100% done with the old project and spending all of his time on the new project.  He’s really looking forward to focusing on new and different things!

Mike wanted to get out of the house yesterday evening because he’d been working on pictures for a few hours and was ready for a break, so we drove about fifteen minutes north to go to the Alderwood Mall, which we had driven past but never actually gone to.  As it turns out, it was a pretty sizable, busy mall.  It had the biggest movie theater we’d ever seen, and it also had a Lego store.  I was really surprised at some of the Legos they have now!  (The UN headquarters?  Really?)  There’s also a really cool thing now that I would have LOVED when I was younger.  For $10, you can build your own lego person out of a huge assortment of faces, hair, hats, clothes, etc.  So cool.  And so economical, given that there are whole Lego sets that I wanted as a child specifically because they had “the hair with the red ponytail” or the “wooden-legged pirate” in them.  Regardless, we didn’t buy anything at the mall, but we did have fun looking.  🙂

I hope everyone else had a wonderful Christmas and has exciting plans for the New Year!

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Filed under Christmas, Family, Food, Holidays, Seattle, Shopping

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