I made the main part of the casserole before we took off to Gerry and Julie's. I got to see their two Aussies (yay Aussies!) and took some pictures. Dinner was really good, and then I got an incredible family portrait, plus several candids and the ubiquitous photo of someone taking a photo. Finally, I got some pictures of my sister and her SO (Pamela and Dave). He'd originally said he'd only let me take one, but thanks to the instant show feature of the camera Andy's parents gave us for Christmas, they kept deciding to do little things differently and I ended up with five. I also got some pictures of Mom's two cats. I don't have the stuff necessary to upload them here, but I plan on posting the pictures once I get home.
It rained all day here today; the kind of rain we so desperately need in NC. I hope I bring some of it home with me. It was also nice and cool; downright chilly for some of my family. I may go for another walk tonight, but that will depend on if I think the benefits of the walk are enough to overcome the drawbacks of not having decent walking shoes here. Not that the Wal-Mart specials I use at home are the best, but at least they're vaguely meant for some sort of athletic use.
I'm looking at possibly coming to visit again in September. My cousin Kim might be traveling up with her new baby, Justin (and she's already had her appendix out. Ahem. Anyway...), so I'd get to see her, meet the baby, and see Grandpa again. It depends on if they decide to visit. It sounds like October is still on, though. I wish more of my cousins could make it, since this may be the last time our family celebrates the traditional Christmas Eve dinner. I'm glad we found a weekend in October which a majority of the aunts and uncles could make, at least.
Tomorrow is sour cream noodle bake with Grandpa, Mary, and Grandma Shad. Gerry and Julie have been invited as well, and since I made a double recipe anyway, there should be enough for everyone if they come or more than enough if they don't. They've done up the baby's room really cutely, with a sea-theme. This is perfect, given what waterbugs they and their dogs are.
On Monday I finally go home. I've loved seeing them again, but I also miss Andy something fierce, and there are two kitties who are going to be petted and hugged mercilessly when I get home. Noia actually let me pet her today, but when we got home from Gerry and Julie's was back into the hissing fit mode. Anyway, calling Andy or chatting via MUSH are all fine and good, but hugging and smooching and maybe spending some lazy mornings or afternoons cuddling all sound so very nice right now.