Our impromptu New Year celebration was a fun time. Not bad for something we decided to do two and a half days earlier. Here's a little recap in photos:
Mark Rahn's firebox had been living here since the Flecktoberfest back in November. It shows evidence of what things have been like in MN since the time we could last see the bare earth.
Snow (boatloads of snow) presents its own pleasantries -- you can carve custom-made furniture out of it. Here, with the aid of nothing more than a crude snow shovel, I've built a beer cooler and firewood holder. Drink holders were as simple as shoving your bevvy into the powdery upper layer.
On 14 degree nights, lots of firey implements are in order (with their own recessed snow slots, of course).
Sylvia was a trooper. She spent a lot of time outside learning the nuances of fire smoke and cold weather comforts. Earlier that day she let me know what a trip to the beer store meant to her -- she got to get a sucker. Oh, innocence.
Carrie and Matt (two of the bike arrivals). Very nice chatting with you both and meeting you, Carrie. Even though not a bike freak, she rode over anyway (more proof that you softies down south need to keep riding). Matt makes a mean mocha at CRC when he's not teaching your kid how to play guitar, designing stuff for Space 2 Burn or rocking out in his band. Oh, shit -- that reminds me I forgot to invite Trevor! Sorry ...
Erik Noren (background) and resident shutterbug Emery in the foreground. I was happy to see Noren crawled out of his shop for the party. Mark on the other hand is always there, sometimes when you least expect him. Careful, he has a very techy camera and a quick shutter-release-button finger. If you commit it, he will catch it on digi-film. Don't mess with him -- he turned down a Celebration Ale for a PBR.
Mark Rahn shovels some grub while April goes for a wine glass for the sparkling cider -- ever the responsible Mom. My excuse: I'm drinking for two. Would that hold up in a court of law?
Gratuitous fire shot. The fire carved some beautiful patterns in the shoveled-out snow. More on that a bit later.
Carrie and Johnny. Things were way foggy by this point for reasons mentioned above. These two arrived as our last guest, Mr. Rahn, was leaving. I can recommend (with some reservation) that if you haven't tried it you ought to quaff a Goose Island Bourbon Country Brand Stout. It will change the way you see the world. (4 packs only. May not be legal in some areas. Limited restrictions apply.) Johnny and Carrie were good sports (Especially Carrie. Rollergirls can handle anything you can dish out. Thank you for not punching me. And BTW, Johnny, your double middle fingers would carry more weight were you not sporting a Flanders jacket. I'm just saying it because others are thinking it.) I never thought a video I'd play at a party would be the 1934 Canadian Canoe Demonstration. It's a cool flick and all. You can probably find some of it on Youtube. Hell, there are probably videos of you showering on Youtube and you have no idea. Better check -- NOW.
The remains of a successful celebration. The fire took the ice out straight to the bare ground and also left some incredible melt patterns. You can see two layers from separate storms -- the earlier, dirtier layer and the later, pristine white layer. One of my least favorite things about snowfall is the technology we throw at it in order to get it out of the way. Dude, snow just wants to be.
Detail of ice melt. Dig it.
The day after. Sylvia discovers the Dragon mask in her toy bin. (Sorry, Johnny, it's not another nudie.) Later we headed to IKEA. I have to confess I love IKEA. It appeals to my anal-retentive sense of order and minimalist design. We ate lunch at IKEA. I left my heart in IKEA, but we didn't spend any money (beyond lunch) ... yet.
Currently? 3 degrees, headed to -4 overnight. One of my most important resolutions? Ride to work EVERYDAY. That means tomorrow. Gotta dig out some clothes. Currently playing? Sabbath N.I.B.. Sabbath may actually be surpassing the esteem I hold for Led Zeppelin, narrowly, of course. Rock on, friends.