Thursday the 1st I took and passed the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam. Friday I took Nina to get her Invisalign checked after school, then Saturday Jill and I went to her work party (shockingly before Christmas). When she told me it was being held above a gun range, I had a much different vision in my head than what we got at XCAL. It was a lovely evening with appetizers, dinner and an open bar.


Sunday the Girl Scouts met at our house for a meeting where they “start[ed] with budgeting for future events and activities, and do some cookie sale planning. Then we’ll do a gift swap, a Hanukkah craft, and gingerbread house decorating”. That night after I saw “Covid hospitalizations rising post-Thanksgiving after an autumn lull.” I posted that with the hashtag #MaskUpVaxUp. Monday I posted this sad news from the wonderful restaurant that hosted my birthday party.

Nina Girl Scouts

Tuesday the 6th Nina had joined Broadway Night again, and that night started rehearsals for it. Wednesday I noted there have been people predicting the death of rock music, but judging from that night, it was alive and well. DC101 had their DC101-derland concert at The Anthem, featuring Jimmy Eat World, Spoon, The Struts & Silversun Pickups, and while The Anthem doesn’t have the same capacity as the Capital One Arena where Hot 99.5 would hold their Jingle Bell Ball the next week, it was packed with jumping, screaming fans. It was a good example of rock bands in the last couple decades who are still popular.


Friday Nina went to a cookie rally with the Girl Scouts, then Saturday the 10th we hosted our annual holiday party, for the first time in 3 years inside and people invited from outside our neighborhood. Nina had lots of friends and neighbors there, and we had a parent cocktail party in the kitchen. Some had views about the non-AAP program at Nina’s middle school next year, and that worried us enough we had a conversation with Nina about continuing in AAP. That kicked off a long week to work on her application and have her do a math worksheet and some art to submit to get into the county AAP program (she’d been in a school based one since 3rd grade).


Monday I had to post “Been there” after reading this: “Parenting means constantly looking for the silver linings, and so far I’ve identified two: 1. Sick kids can be atypically sedate and snuggly, which is sweet if they aren’t too disgusting; and 2. If society crumbles, and the resurrection of art and culture depends entirely on the recollections of “Fahrenheit 451”-style wanderers who have committed certain works to memory, I am fully prepared to dictate “Encanto” frame for frame.”, from this article.


Tuesday the 13th was Terraset’s Winter Concert for their orchestra, band and chorus where Nina performed in the last two (they also had done a performance in the afternoon for the other students). Friday we got takeout from Mezeh. Saturday we were invited for cocktails and pizza at Dee & Paul’s and the girls hung out while the adults got to talk. Nina’s winter break started Monday, and she luxuriated in practically unlimited device time. On International Rush Day (21-12), I celebrated with my favorite Rush acquisitions this year: pinball and beer. Friday evening we got takeout from Big Buns as Jill had to stop at the nearby Whole Foods to get a cake for Christmas.


Christmas Eve was Saturday the 24th, and after Nina started her catsitting duties, we got surprise Cannons as the VRBO they were renting wouldn’t open and it was bitterly cold that weekend. We had just finished our dinner, but cooked the pizzas they bought and started a fire so everyone could have s’mores. Nina got her usual pajamas gift that evening, but really liked them.


Christmas morning we got up relatively early and opened our stockings and gifts. This was the first year Nina didn’t ask for or receive toys – her favorite gift was the Crunchyroll membership that my mom and sister got her. I had made a roast beef and Yorkshire Pudding meal the night before, and we brought that over to my dad’s house, where he and Patricia were waiting. We ate the meal, exchanged gifts, and played with their dog Justin. Later we had a video call with Mom and Sharon and their families, as well as Jill’s mom and sisters. I also had to share my favorite comic of the day.

Patricia Bryce

Monday Penny came over for a sleepover and helped with the catsitting, then they had pizza. The next morning when they went outside they walked briefly on the lagoon as it was still below freezing and pretty solid. Wednesday Nina had a couple friends over and it was finally above freezing, so they smashed the ice and threw it towards the geese. That night we met up with the Cannons for dinner at the Dogfish Head Alehouse. Friday we had the Cannons, Larsens and Norwood-Hochradels over for a New Year’s Eve Eve party since the Cannons were headed home the next day.

Nina Penny

New Year’s Eve itself was quiet. We got sushi from Arete and watched Demon Slayer before watching the ball drop. And I had to post this hilarious example of karma.

Kerry Jill Nina