After a year without shoveling snow, I volunteered to shovel the walk and driveway before Amy arrived. I would have finished the entire driveway --only about 4" -- but they arrived as I was finishing up their space and Amy told me to go inside. (One does not disagree with Amy.) Once everyone arrived, we opened gifts while munching on delicious things -- cheese soufflé, Belgian waffles, strawberries and crème fraîche -- and amusing my nephew, whose favorite part was probably a large shallow box he sat in after the gift it had been holding was taken out. I gave him an emptied gift wrap roll and he was a very happy little burrito. Even the dogs tolerated him batting at them with his cardboard tube.
Amy and company left for lunch with some of their extended family, so we relaxed and played with our new toys. My brother broke in his new snowboarding pants by shoveling again since it was still snowing. He left a bit later for the drive back to Fort Collins since he was scheduled to work on Thursday morning. Between the snow and tentative plans for Laurel to see her Grandma Betty (Himself's mother) we decided to send Dad and Sarah as our family's delegation to Christmas dinner at Grandma Peg's (Amy's mother-in-law) in Conifer.
Laurel wanted to dress up for her grandma, so we got out the fancy dress she wore for last year's New Year's photos and put part of her hair up in a coordinating barrette to pull it away from her face. We were only expecting Betty, Denice (Himself's sister) and her baby T., so we were surprised Himself came along too! Laurel behaved beautifully and really got a kick out of seeing the baby.
We had nebulous plans to go shopping on Boxing Day, but coordinating plans requires communication of same and we failed at that. So we hung around the house until we got itchy to go out after Amy arrived. Sarah and I went downtown so I could explore the latest consignment stores there, Twigs and Aspen's.
Twigs (303-670-4400) has everything great about resale shops in Evergreen: tons of moderate to upscale brand name clothes at reasonable prices, friendly storekeepers, and a cute mascot... er, kid. After oohing and ahhing over a cute pair of Western boots (Laurel will have to go and try them on) we checked out with an LL Bean snow suit, khaki/chocolate houndstooth print snow pants and earflap hat, a set of snowman-print pajamas and coordinating NWT Malina silk jumpsuit, hat and booties, which were the big find of the trip -- combined those have a retail value around $70 at Barney's. The tab for all of that clothing? $45.
Aspen's (303-670-6061) is a women's resale shop that is already a minor mecca for my sisters and their handbag collections. Their stock of gently used handbags yielded Prada bags that my sisters received for Christmas. I was suggested to go there to see if they still had a certain designer handbag for my younger sister's upcoming birthday. No dice on that, but I found a wool fisherman's sweater in my size for $20 and Sarah found a Chanel handbag she liked, so I picked that up instead. We'd looked at a lovely periwinkle velvet top when we came in but figured it was out of my budget and I'm not really a velvet person anyway, but when the store's proprietress suggested I try it on, I did. I ended up buying that too and am happy I did -- with a nice skirt, I'm set for our New Year's photos without the surprise stress of going into Nordstrom's again. (I do not like malls, most salespeople, or enormous dressing rooms at closing time. I like shopping online and surplus stores.)
After that we ran out to Wal-Mart to pick up mascara. Along the way we picked up soda-flavored lip balm, a case to hold Littlest Pet Shop figurines, and a marked-down Bratz Babyz doll. We ran into Frazer (the younger), who I wouldn't have recognized if Sarah hadn't mentioned it. Made him laugh by offering Sarah $20 to do a cartwheel in the store. She didn't take the bait.