thanksgiving, cinnamon sticks, and family

Im not a blog writer. To be truthful, i am not much of a writer at all. I tend to the more visual side of life. I use my eyes continually: photography, reading, making those quirky faces to create laughter out of anyone i can.. I am not yet good at putting my thoughts down on paper/computer screen. Why? My mother is an English Major, and an EXCELLENT writer. My sister and two brothers are both English Majors, and one brother is even and English teacher on the way to getting his doctorate. My father, though a History Major, writes sermons every week. So how did i miss the writing genes?? I have several theories.
case #1. an issue of wrong dressing room, wrong pair of jeans...... oops, wrong spelling. so much for that theory.

case #2. someone in the family needed to be at least mostly-good at math..

case # 3. aliens.

case # 4. im not really sure, but im pretty positive that whoever stole my future brilliant career as a novelist also took my brilliant ability to speak with a German accent.. and any gracefulness i might have had.

so that was NOT going to be a part of my post, but, hey, as stated, my mind rambles..

ANYWAYS, this thanksgiving was unlike any i've ever experienced previously. I was not home with my wonderful (immediate) family. instead, i was with my mom's side of the family.. but to begin at the beginning:

my precious father had knee replacement surgery last Monday. and instead of keeping me at the hospital, Mom said it would be easier for both Dad and I (dad because he would just be asleep and me because i hate seeing him in pain, and i really cant handle needles very well. and there were tons of needles) if i went to be with my cousin for her birthday (the day before Thanksgiving).
so, on the excuse of being "helpful", on Tuesday morning i rode up to Abingdon with my awesome Aunt Judy and Uncle Wayne to surprise my cousin for her birthday. hoorah she was surprised! :D Since it was her birthday, i stayed with her the entire week :] it was so much of those incredible experiences that is irreplacable and basically indescribable.

thanksgiving was a joy, went to her moms family's thanksgiving, then to my grandparents house for thanksgiving. some of my cousins and their family and my aunt and uncle and my other 2 uncles and their wives and families, of course my grandparents, and even their pastor and his family. tons of little kids running around, and for once, i had someone my age (basically) there to talk to.. actually, more than one.. about 4 or 5!! that never happens for me on thanksgiving (though i didnt realize how much i wished for it to happen until i was there.. though i wouldnt change our normal thanksgivings for the world, either! it was just fun different). then staying up late with Ana once back to the Abingdon house, watching the stars and discussing the amazing blessings God had given us this past year. having long prayers together.
Friday, picking out a Christmas tree, while i played photographer. i even got to use some of those pics later on for their Christmas cards! :D eating a delicious pizza lunch at Bellas, then shopping and talking and just enjoying everyones company.. that night we did a script reading with a bunch of their friends, and then ana, kris, and i stayed up playing candy land and watching a movie.. ana and i fell asleep on one couch, kris on another..
waking up saturday to find out i could stay til tuesday! decorating, celebrating Julie's birthday, baking.
Sunday praising the Lord for His Awesomeness. Resting, rejoicing, celebrating God.
Monday i got a job taking advertising photos for a wood company! got to hang with Jewels and then go to lunch with Unc and her. Going to the library, working on a project, listening to Ana sing with her choir that night (in below 32 degrees weather), going home and packing.
Coming home this morning with Uncle, singing and laughing and talking and being his secretary.. taking some car photography, joking..

so basically, in incomplete, messy sentences, is how i spent my thanksgiving week. on to cinnamon sticks

when you think of cinnamon sticks, does it ever occur to you that they might be hard to crush? i read a recipe recently, for a warm winter drink that i really wanted to try out. first few lines : "crush a cinnamon stick. put a cup of milk in a saucepan, add crushed cinnamon stick, and heat until begins to boil." etc. so, first things first, right? i take out a cinnamon stick...... for the next 20 minutes, i try 100s of different ways of crushing the drat thing. finally, i give up, chop it up, and dump it in the still-cold milk in the saucepan.. drat cinnamon, it will just have to work.. p.s. the drink ended up pretty good actually :]

family is incredible. thats all i have to say about them. that and irreplaceable. and amazing. and worth every little annoyance or quirk or oddity that always comes with them. :]

alright, goodnight sweet dreams! blessings

because He lives and reigns