Fortunately, 2011 has not yet resulted in any self-improvement

Did everyone have a good New Year's Eve, as I instructed? I definitely did, due in no small part to the fact that Emily and I can't get together at either of our houses without pretending that we are throwing a party for 20 people.

The four of us ate a LOT of this. I alone ate two quarts of queso.
The kids also had a pretty good time playing with Cash's sweet new Christmas presents.

Anna kicks the tire in an idiomatic evaluation of the vehicle, finds it satisfactory.
Actually, the two played together so successfully that we just dropped Anna right back off at their house the next night while we went to the Spurs game in San Antonio (our Christmas gift from Tom and Kristy.) So thanks very much to everyone I just mentioned! When I turned 30 I sort of assumed that I was now of an age where people at sporting events would stop screaming at me to stand up and put my hands in the air and give them high fives, but I was COMPLETELY WRONG about that. Youth re-captured.

And how did we begin 2011? Mega-productively, from a culinary standpoint. Black-eyed peas, my only actual superstition, check.  Turnip and collard greens from the CSA box, check. Poached egg for awesomeness, double check and underline.

No possible way this fails to result in a lucky year.
We also decided to immerse ourselves in some culture, heading down to the Blanton for the last day of the Turner to Monet exhibit. Anna found 19th century art pretty scintillating.

Sooooo much easier when she just passes out.
She perked right up when we put a menu in front of her, though.

Guess that whole "modeling behaviors" thing does work in some cases.
I ordered...a wrap.

I did not resolve to break any dining-out habits.
After that it was time to remove the trimmings from our very jolly Christmas tree and transfer it to a more permanent home outdoors.  I was hoping that since we were removing the offending ornaments it would take it a little easier with the VERY PAINFUL POKING, but no, we were spared no scratchiness whatsoever. This is an unforgiving plant, my friends.

Hey, also an unbelievably heavy one! Here's the first dolly Dan brought home for it:

The tree leaned over and swallowed it whole, then the pot started rolling around with laughter and made a giant mess.
We adjusted our tools, and tried again.

Listen, this is not something you want to see when you open your front door. It means you've done something very bad.
Anyway, it's finally over by the side of the house. Resting. Plotting.

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