On Christmas Day mom and I (and Gizmo!) went to Nani's house with our aunt, my uncle, and his wife. I ran late because of a massive baking binge ("cornbread", gingerbread cookies, oatmeal PB choco cookies, choco maple cupcakes, choco peppermint cupcakes, green tea cupcakes, honey wheat bread. All vegan), but arrived right before we started to eat. I'm glad I brought some food because the rest of the meal on the table had meat in it, and both my mom and me are vegetarians/vegans. When I got ready to go, dad called to say there was sudden lake effect snow (it's backwards, but Chicagoland does experience it sometimes). I shrugged, and drove on. Almost immediately, I drove into a blizzard. From Wheeling to Lake Zurich, I crawled at 25 mph through 6"-deep snow piled on the roads while the white stuff kept dumping down. Even with 4WD it was scary. Just stayed very focused on staying in the tire tracks ahead of me, and eventually I arrived in Cary where they had only four inches total, so the roads were fine.
A couple days later, dad and I went to my aunt's place to visit with our family that I haven't seen in years. My cousins drove all the way up from Florida to visit family in Wisconsin and Illinois! My other cousin's kids have grown so much... the last time I saw her daughter she was a baby, and now she's running around talking and hugging. After someone strongly insisted we play games, Mad Gabs and Taboo were pulled out - video to follow.
So finally we come to Bananagrams. Driving through Algonquin the other day, LJ and I spotted a rehabilitated coffeeshop right in the suffering downtown area. Have to try it! The coffee was wonderful, the seating cozy, the baristas friendly... and there were games! We returned to spend many hours seated on the couches playing our first games of Bananagrams. It was so fun, in fact, that's what I would like to be doing right now.