For Christmas, Andrea and I drove out to Iowa to visit her family. On Saturday, we mostly relaxed and then went and got haircuts and Diana's salon. On Sunday, we had pictures taken with the entire extended family and then went down to Grandma Bice's new house for Christmas with that side of the family.
On Christmas Eve, Andrea and I attended the 3 pm service at the Lutheran Church of Hope in West Des Moines. This was the small service with approximately 3000 people. It was far and away the largest Lutheran church that I've ever seen. At the same time, it was the most un-Lutheran Lutheran church that I've ever seen. It was very much an evangelical megachurch as opposed to what we expected from a Lutheran church. While we both believe that there are definitely some lessons for Holy Shepherd that can be learned from Hope, both of us agreed that if Holy Shepherd ever resembled Lutherand Church of Hope, we would no longer be going there. After the service, we went back to Andrea's parents' house and then drove to Grandma and Grandpa Love's house for Christmas Eve.
On Christmas Day, both Andrea and her mom had come down with the flu, so we had a subdued Christmas morning and then just relaxed around the house for the day. On Wednesday, Andrea was still not feeling well, so we stayed in Iowa another day and I just worked from their basement. On Thursday, another blizzard hit all of eastern Colorado, so we decided to wait another day and then ended up just staying for the weekend. We finally got home to Denver on Sunday, December 30.
I hope that everyone had a great Christmas and New Years. I also want to remember our across the street neighbor, Kent Yoh, who passed away on Christmas Day. He and his wife, Ina Claire, have lived across the street for the last 39 years and he will be missed.