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9:45 PM A very full day for our family. This morning was relatively quiet. Susan did some work on her paper and took Hannah (our cat) to the vet to have her stitches/staples removed from her surgery. The rest of us got ready for the day while the two of them were gone. Susan came home and finished up her paper (it was due today and made it out today, hooray!). We all went out to lunch (Cracker Barrel, one of our favorites) and Susan and Elisabeth left from there to drive to Raleigh to see the Nutcracker--we've had tickets for the past two years and for the past two years, we were unable to go (we all had the flu two years ago and last year, we had a winter storm the day of the performance). I'm glad that finally, after three years of trying, Susan and Elisabeth were able to see a performance of the Nutcracker.

Sophie, Mom, and I went to Fayetteville to do some shopping for Susan. That was an adventure! We probably spent more time in the car trying to get in and out of the parking lot than we spent in the mall itself. Sophie had fallen asleep on the way, so she was quite cranky about being pulled out of the carseat and insisted that I carry her around the mall pretty much the whole time. I feel like I've been working out all day, my arms are so sore and tired. I really, really hope that we are finished with all of our shopping, because I'm not sure I'm up for any more. I feel like a total Grinch about the whole thing. Fortunately, we have had a quiet night at home with wrapping presents, baths, and staying up late (the girls had gotten sucked into Charlie and the Chocolate Factory). We also helped ourselves to some cake made by a member of the congregation (Hi, Sylvia!). What a treat!

After all of that, tomorrow is likely to be just as busy, if not busier, as we have our Open House and will have worship later tomorrow evening. Sunday morning will follow close behind, and I'm sure we will all collapse into a heap come Sunday afternoon!

Tonight, Sophie reminded me that Santa Claus was coming and that he would bring me a toy if I had been good. When I asked her if she thought I had been good, she thought for a long time and said, "mostly." Then I asked if she had been good, she thought for a long time and said, "mostly." At least she's being honest.