I need to go back to painting and I mean soon! We have just about done everything we wanted to do during the holiday vacations and comes Tuesday morning, I think we will go back to the normal beat satisfied with the time we have all spent together. We even transplanted the peanut plant Ulysse sewed about a month ago, in a larger pot. The weather has been strange, rainy and warm one day, arctic cold and snowy another day. We skated on the pond for the first time yesterday and did so in the darkness since I was done shoveling the surface at 7 p.m. Quite a trip, I will tell you! The moon was rising, bright enough to give some light and it was crispy cold. Ulysse and I skated for almost an hour doing figures, racing and trying different moves. All we could hear was the sound of the blades on the ice surface. It was wonderful. When our fingers started getting numb and we could almost not feel our nose anymore, we gave up and started skating upward the hill to our house. That is when we heard the most beautiful coyote howl we have ever heard. It was like a song, like Romeo singing his heart out to his love Juliette. The whole thing was so perfect with a clear sky full of stars, the snow blue and sparkly, that we laughed and thought that all this put together looked and sounded fake. Like stuff like this does not happen in real life... It will soon be time to pack away the Christmas decorations and take the garlands and balls and candy canes off the tree. It always makes me feel a bit sad to undo our wonderful tree that looks like it could live this way, like the king of our dining room, forever. But at least we give it another chance to be good for something. We take it outside and tie it to the trunk of a larger tree near our house. We then decorate it with peanut buttle balls, suet and orange pieces and it becomes a bird tree till spring arrives. With all these days of vacations, we are all turning into a bunch of lazy bums. Even the animals act like plushies. They squatted our beds and seem to be permanent fixtures on the blankets. Ulysse built this little Can robot today and I think he looks real cute and cudly and friendly. He does not do much, simply walks straight. But who knows, maybe my son could work on a new prototype for next year, one that could do the dishes, cook meals, clean up the house, even brush my teeth. With a couple of these robots around, we could just go ahead and hibernate completely for a little while... So, it will be back to painting on Tuesday morning and it will be fun. Just as fun as these vacations have been!