hi folks, first of all, to fans of the guest book, i will try to get that back up and running soon. just have to delete all of the stupid entries. i have been majorly spammed here. second of all, to those concerned about my little corner of the world, thank you. we are back up and running now, too. someday, i will try to describe what it's like listening to trees fall and poles snap and wires get yanked out of the side of your house while you try to sleep, all with the steady rhythm of freezing rain in the background. with no electricity, heat, or water, we hung out at home as long as we could, about 48 hours or so. our fire in the fireplace betrayed us a bit on night 2 when it started to burn right through to the sub-floor. some time during the next day, we decided to flee to an undisclosed location, but let's just say we're so lucky that mom got her power back. the next day when we went back home for a few more things, including guitars, it was 29 degrees inside of the house. now my whole family is safe and warm and back home with everything restored, just about. we have some damage to repair, but we have overflowing gratitude for all of those who helped us in our neighborhood and in our extended family. it might be spring before we can clean up the trees and limbs, but for now, we can watch holiday movies and bake cookies and cuddle with the dog and cat and create a holiday scene that we will remember for the rest of our lives. happy holidays, everyone.