Sunday, December 29, 2013

Holiday Parties, Not so Inert Gasses, and a Zamboni - Winter Fun

Saturday between Christmas and New Years.  The perfect time for a little holiday get together at the Range.  It's the same group each year here, a bunch of friends from school who live in the area.

It's nothing fancy, some snacks, some music, and lots of stories. And of course, Partner's latest bow tie - Starry Starry Night.
It started with a baked glazed ham, sliced and made into sandwiches with sharp cheddar and some honey mustard.
Then into a crockpot on the side table went a whole bunch of spicy party meatballs.
With about a dozen or so  folks expected, late afternoon, we didn't need a huge feast, just some tasty munchies, and plenty of soft drinks and a couple beers for the few who weren't driving.
There was dip (including Italian Spinach dip with red pepper)  with chips, crackers and fresh veggies and everyone's favorite,  the red  velvet cake roll with fluffy cream cheese filling, and a side of white chocolate peppermint bark to munch on.
Unfortunately for Mr. Barkley, with all the food within easy stealing reach on the table with more in the kitchen for refills,  he was jailed in the back office, though able to see everyone, get some pets and some treats.
 I need to talk to the warden about the lack of toys in here.

After everyone was full, it was time to catch up, stories from school, stories from careers,  This is a pretty eclectic bunch - accountants , architect, engineers, computer geek, a music historian, paralegal, a firefighter, a teacher, a Veterinarian, an Urban Planner and hockey player

"Then, we messed with his keyboard so every time he typed a semi colon what actually typed out was "I'm a little teapot, short and stout". 
Then there was a discussion on MAPP gas is better than butane for sweat soldering, fun with liquid nitrogen, and a driving performance review of the latest in Zambonis

"Note the understated drama of its appearance and the quality of its interior appointments.  I'd personally would prefer more control from the chassis and more presence from the engine, This machine still gives you that measure of confidence when you're surrounded by the usual idiots in traffic and with though it only has a top  speed of 7 mph, it DOES look fast on the ice".
Pretty soon, it was time for those with young kids to head home, while others migrated to the city to watch one of the guests have a late practice hockey game at the Blackhawks Stadium.  Hey, they have a bar on one level and an Zamboni!

What kind of trouble could we get into!  


  1. I like the bow tie.
    Sounds like a fun time, we have lost touch with so many people after moving out into the middle of no where or are we actually on the back side of no where? I will have to think about it. Anyway it is good to be able to get together with old buddies! Rain and more rain here.

  2. Thanks for sharing photos of your home and fellowship. Nites like these are always good memories in the making.

  3. Just signing in to say Hi from England, I like your blog, and I hope you enjoy the break.

  4. If you have to ask what kind of trouble you could get into, you're not really trying.

    You can trust me on this - after all, I wasn't always a preacher. Heh.

  5. Glad you are feeling better and had a chance to get together with friends.

    You are lucky that Barkley is a lab, Chloe would look at that child gate and treat it like a low hurdle.

  6. Italian spinach dip with red peppers...gonna have to go hunt for a recipe for that one. Looks like a great time...

  7. Greg - the dip was

    1 and 1/4 cup sour cream
    cup of fresh grated mozzarella
    1 small box frozen spinach, thawed, drained and chopped
    1/2 of large red pepper, finely chopped
    1 package dry Italian dressing (I used one from Aldi)
    a pinch of chopped garlic
    a small handful of chopped smoked bacon

    Mix and let flavors blend for a few hours. Serve with veggies and crackers.

  8. Glad you're feeling better. Like the tie. One day I'll learn to tie a bow tie, maybe :-). I find your photos truly add to the story and a little envious of your home with the wood work, built ins and Craftsman feel. Very homey.

  9. Looks like time well spent with friends . . . a nice end to our current year and great way to begin the next . . . Merry Christmas Brigid and Happy New Year!

  10. Sounds as though you had a lovely weekend, Brigid! Live the good Rev. said, if you have to ask...and here I thought newlyweds KNEW what to do with free time together!

    And like another said of their Chloe, our Shiloh would've simply pogo'd over that kiddy gate and been into anything cheese-like before you could even blink!

  11. Sunnybrook Farm - he has a LOT of bow ties, but this one was really cool. I traded country life for being nearer the city, but it is nice to have friends close by.

    Rob - may you have some of those memories yourself.

    Copybookheadings - welcome, and thanks.

    Rev. Paul - hehehe

    Mrs. S. - Barkley has always respected the babygate, even though he could push it over with his nose. Funny dog.

    Blaine Clark - the wood in the home is beautiful, the bedrooms have just as much. It's only 950 square feet, but has a full basement and a big shop, so I'm totally happy with less "stuff".

    eiaftinfo - thanks for the phone call over Christmas. We hope to see you again soon.

    Monkeywrangler - newlyweds with his and hers reloading gear, gee what WILL we do with our time :-)

  12. I've a honey mustard and little teapot stories, not for this venue.
    I'll share sometime....



  13. I love the woodwork in your home...and that awesome looking red velvet roll. I make a mean pumpkin roll but that red velvet is tickling my taste buds

  14. Way too much fun. Will adults never grow up!?! I hope not, in these ways. Glad you 'kids' had fun.

  15. Fantastic! Thanks for sharing.

  16. Zamboni...

    Interesting story about Ice Resurfacing Ltd, where they make them. Bunch of years ago, our region was experiencing a rash of weird auto thefts. Weird from the standpoint that they were not the typical theft, where we normally find hulk stripped of sheet metal out in the country. Instead, we'd find the shell, sheet metal intact, missing the running gear; frame, power train, etc.

    One of the officers in the task force that I was working, vacationed in Ontario, and noticed a field along the freeway, with dozens of GM short body 4x4's, all with For Sale signs on them. Being the curious sort, he stopped by the office, asked why the bodies were for sale. Found out that Ice Resurfacing makes the Zamboni, utilizing a GM 4x4 power train and frame. And it's cheaper to order a whole vehicle from the local dealer, instead of ordering all the parts. So they sold the removed body to anyone....along with the title.

    The secretary commented that there were a couple of guys (from our juris) who had bought a dozen or so, importing them into the US.

    Imagine that.... These two guys were responsible for close to two dozen thefts, and fraudulent titling of stolen vehicles.

  17. "less stuff" is our goal. Been married and collecting (or so it seems) for 28 year.


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