Long walk of winter

We’re still in the midst of a long walk through a winter that’s been taking place since January, with snow after snow after snow that persists in spite of Punxsutawney Phil’s optimistic predictions.

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We still try to get the kids out as much as possible, whether that’s a trip down to the Kroc Center to run around or a long stroll down to the Chick-Fil-A, when temperatures drift back into the fifties momentarily. That’s where we went on Groundhog Day, getting out of the house to move around and then grab some chicken sandwiches at our favorite indoor playground. Vivian stayed home and made soup that evening, which we ate while watching the movie Groundhog Day together. It’s been my favorite film for years, and I seem to enjoy it more with every sitting.

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The next day was Super Bowl Sunday, so we had all four grandparents (and Uncles Nathan and Jonny) over to watch the Big Game with us. We had the usual assortment of Super Bowl food, including jalapeño poppers, buffalo wings, and a variety of chips and dips. Hannah’s team lost for the first time in her life as the Patriots beat the Rams in a game that felt like it would last forever. It was still good to get together to share the same experience with a couple million other people around the world, even if it meant sitting through Maroon 5 with the sound un-muted part of the time.

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The snow continued to come over and over through the following week, but we still found fun things to do indoors. Among them is a group called 1,000,000 Cups, which invites business leaders to talk about their experience and share their thoughts. I got to hear from Scooter’s co-founder Don Eckles, who talked about starting his coffee chain in the mid-90s focusing on a speedy, drive-thru experience. It was enlightening to hear about the brand loyalty of a coffee chain, which only makes sense as people tend to be downright religious about which cup of “joe” gets them going in the morning.

Among my other indoor projects was trying (and failing) to replace a 3-way light switch with a Smart Switch, only to learn through trial and error that every switch in the circuit would have to be replaced, not just one.

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Then on Saturday, our friend Kerri and her son Jonah celebrated their 40th and 5th birthdays, respectively. Our whole family joined them for some pizza, nachos, and cocktail wieners (and cake) as the kids dressed as superheroes and watched (most of) The Incredibles II. The little party was held at the most lavish apartment complex clubhouse I’d ever seen, which had its own legit mini-movie theater in the basement, among other things. Lexi brought Sammy and August along for the party, and we got our obligatory photo of Aaron, August, and Jonah together, as the three are growing up together like little brothers.

Next stop: V-Day!

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