23 December 2009

Dearest East Texas

On Monday, I made my way home. The drive was just spectacular- sun, no cops, and pine trees. Outside of Marquez, Texas I passed by a restaurant serving fried chicken and gourmet hot dogs. Oh man, it was hard not to stop.

Maybe they serve wine with the hot dogs?
Or the dog is actually a meat product?
No, the hot dogs are served on fine china. That has to be it.
I don’t even know.

Tuesday consisted of shopping, well- behaved shoppers, Christmas presents I’m not supposed to know about and some family. I went shopping with Mom in the morning. Longview was surprisingly not too crowded. Usually, everything is congested and traffic is bad. We got in and out and on our way! Yay efficiency!

After we returned to the ‘ville, I headed over to my Granny and Grandad’s house to deliver a few Christmas presents. The Charlie Jones Familia is spending Christmas with the other side of their family, so they had Christmas with G&G on Tuesday. I crashed their dinner and stayed to watch them open presents, being the best cousin they have. Right boys? Right. Maybe it was the mixture of people that were there, or maybe they were just in a really good mood, but Granny and Grandad were in the BEST MOOD EVER. They were cracking jokes, going along with the youngsters’ jokes, and even joking about alcohol.

To truly appreciate this, one has to understand said Granny and Grandad. Here is a descriptive list of them:
1. They have been married for 60 years.
2. Grandad built their house before he asked Granny to marry him, and they have lived in that house ever since.
3. Their garden is the best and most fruitful in Hallsville.
4. Granny has taught 2nd grade Sunday school for 56 years
5. They have three children, Jolene (my mom), Stanley, and Charlie.
6. They NEVER leave East Texas. If it is more than 5 hours away, they aren’t coming.
7. Grandad doesn’t always put in his teeth for guests.
8. Both of them are in bed by 9pm every night.

So, this fantastic mood that they were in was particularly surprising and oh so entertaining. The cousins were also in high spirits, but they are pretty happy people, so they didn’t surprise me.

Brian: Hey Grandad, where did you get these envelopes?
Grandad: The bank. I need that envelope back. Filled up.
Brian: Wait, what?

When all of the cousin festivities wrapped up, I met a one Johannesburg at my Mom and Dad’s house. I hadn’t seen her since August! August I tell you! Once we had ourselves contained, we went to dinner. It is so nice to have a friend that you can pick up with right where you left off. Johannesburg is like that. I’ll keep her around. We ate dinner in Marshall, and planned to go see Avatar at the Marshall movie theater, but when we got there they weren’t showing all the advertised times. Including the time we wanted to see the movie. So, being the quick thinkers we are, we drove all the way to Longview and saw the movie there.

Avatar was SO GOOD. Not just good, so good. The plot was interesting. The colors in the film were beautiful. It was generally a good film. I liked it. And now want an avatar with elfish ears…

Today, I did more of the same. Mom and I went shopping again, but this time it wasn’t for our family. We took two kids from Mom and Dad’s church to buy presents for their Mom. I knew the little girl from my high school teaching program. Out of my class of third graders, she was my favorite. She has an older brother, and he is just as sweet as she is. They were really cute and I’m glad I was here to shop with them.

After we finished up shopping, and brought the kids back to their mom, Mom and I went over see Mrs. Janice and Mr. Chuck. They are some of my favorite people. Their two little boys are hilarious, too. Mr. Chuck is a jeweler, and always makes me try on all sorts of ridiculously expensive jewelry. Tonight, I tried on a $1400 ring. It was sparkly and very pretty. He also had a new batch of vintage rings, which I always enjoy seeing. He let me try on a wedding ring from the 1920s. It was so beautiful! Older jewelry has more character and craftsmanship in it than the new stuff. I like it.
While I was trying on expensive jewelry, it started pouring rain outside. Then, the tornado alarm started going off. Sweet. Everyone in Mrs. Janice's took cover in their hallway and we had a grand ol’ time. I became best friends with a Yorkie named Hank. Sorry, Josh and JoAnna! Once the tornado alarm went off, Mom and I headed home. The traffic on Highway 80 was really bad, only because a tornado had just passed through. I guess that could stop things up. As we passed by the Fed Ex truck yard, there was a huge 18-wheeler turned over. Geeze. Sheet metal and insulation was also all over the place.

Now, I’m home, watching Glee and quilting.
And tomorrow is Christmas Eve. eeeeeek!

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