2009 Dec 30 | Christmas in SD

The first round of presents included a chess set from India from Monica. I actually asked for chess sets last year, but better late than never, I guess. ;)

Monica waiving to the train.

Hunting for pheasants.

You get pretty warm walking through that stuff.

One problem: the truck is way back where we started.

Looks like he's just holding a live one.

You just need to see through the windshield somewhere, even if you have to duck down a bit.

That's a lot of deer sausage.

Everyone is in coats and snow pants; Monica is in a skirt.

Neal: "What do you think the temperature is?" Del: "One."

Better to be warm than fashionable.

I don't know what most families do on Christmas eve, but ours goes hunting. Gotta get some food before the blizzard hits.


Sun pillar.

Round of presents, #2.

Mom with an angel candle.

Uh oh, it's snowing.



Monica and Rob with their pheasant dish.

Now what are we gonna put your water in?

So much for getting the vehicles out.

Which is why you always park one out on the road and walk out to it.

A neighbor coming to clean out the driveway.

The roads aren't too bad.

Shoveling grandpa out.

All clear!

Some of the roads were pretty open except for a few finger drifts, but the interstates were still closed down, so a lot of the family couldn't make it.

Playing rummy 500.

The boots are all the way downstairs, but the duct tape and plastic bags are right here.

As long as you can see some gravel, you can usually get through.

Once you don't see any more gravel, you're just guessing at how deep the snow is. Oops, guessed wrong here. That's why you keep shovels in the back.

One of the family meals.

Presents, round #3.

Monica playing with the dog and reading her most awesome of presents, a cook book from me. ;)

That's one big box.

Monica opening her new cache of romance novels.

Dad playing with the dog.

Yeah, I think they could have spent a bit more time wrapping that one.

"Wait, you can't throw that in the box of presents you're thankful for but don't even remotely want! It's from me!"

Yeah, yeah, I saw you put that in the unwanted box, too.

As always, it's more fun playing with the wrapping paper than the actual presents (baseball with the TV remote as the bat, in this case).

Dumb censors take out the absolute best part of the movie.

Just a few of Mom's sing-and-dance-and-move figures.

The dog helping dad open one of his presents. I think this is round #4.

Dad helping Ron take off a shirt that's just a tad too tight.

Ron's face shows how excited he is to receive this.

Mom and her new soap container.

Ron and Melissa with their new dog toys.

It lights up and plays music. Of course.

Lots of wrapping paper in the aftermath.

Out hunting again. I don't see any road up there; we better turn around.

Oh wait, great timing! The plow just came through. We can keep going.

The dog carefully watching for pheasants and deer.

There are a ton of pheasants in there, but good luck getting them with only a few walkers.

We can give it a shot, though. The dog realizing the snow is almost deeper than she is.

Oh come on; I can't even see the end yet. How much farther? Especially since the pheasants fly away way before we even get close.

The result of planning for around 30 people and having the blizzard prevent about 20 of them from coming: lots of leftovers.


And more.

Presents, round I-can't-remember. Thankfully the blizzard was only for a few days so they could make it here afterwards.

Rummy 500 again.

All of our little bake-in-the-oven, uh, thingies.

Uff da, more deep snow.

Ron and I had to basically dig our way through this drift.

The things you see when you have the wrong gun. We were actually scared they were going to run into us.

Monica trying to roll / bounce / swim over the snow drift.

Ron shooting at a pheasant and blowing the heck out of a branch, haha.

More presents? Maybe they will never end.

Some of the house lights from the road.

Three deer out along the railroad tracks. I wonder what they think about the fake deer dad put out to sight in the rifles.

Bald eagle.

Ducks at the dam in Pierre.

Good luck using those bathrooms.

The big ol' rock at the bottom of the hill. Just in case you can't make the corner, it's a nice way to stop you from smashing into the building.

Finally, wireless internet!

Grr, I hate when people put coats up here; they're supposed to go under your seat since this is for the big bags. One day I'm gonna throw it on the floor and just stick my bag there without saying a word.

A mosquito somehow stuck between the panes of the window.

Oh come on. These guys parked in the road part of the park-n-fly, so you have to drive all the way around instead of being able to go through.