Jeff and girls left this morning. Mom and Dad made breakfast. I played Gears of War with Josh on Xbox Live. Adam played a little too.

My parents, along with Andra and Jackson, took Erin to RDU airport. I found the Duke game on Fox Sports Network a little while after it started. They were playing San Jose State University. SJSU has something like 18 wins in the past three years and are currently 1-12 or something. They went on a frustrating run against the Blue Devils and were within three points after a big Duke lead, but Duke, as they tend to do, played better in the second half and came away with the win.

During the game, Erin called to tell us that her flight was delayed. Mom and Dad were already as close as Northern High School, about 30 minutes from the airport, when she called, so they turned back around to go get her.

Amanda went to the grocery store during the game too. There were no dinner plans and she has been jonesing for the white chili, so she went and got the things she needed for that. She and my parents and that whole crew got back just a few minutes after the game, at which point I finally took a shower.

We all exchanged what presents we had left to exchange.  We’d gotten Mom and Dad a portable steam cleaner, which we have really liked having ourselves.  Andra and Josh received a birdhouse made by Amanda’s grandfather, Earl Lemons.  Josh was pretty excited about it- he’d really liked the one we gave my parents a couple years ago.  We gave Adam and Erin giftcards to Wal-Mart; not exciting but very useful to them right now I think.  We got a few odds and ends such a a hammer made for busting out glass (for when the Wrightsville Beach bridge collapses while we’re driving over it, or a flood) and some sticky-backed lights for places lights are needed.  That was a really cool gift- I think we’ll put them in two closets and the shed.  Mom and Dad also got us a little model ship, which I think was really nice.  It goes very well with our beach-themed house.  We just have to figure out where to put it.  Adam got everyone shirts from the place he worked at in San Diego.  Karl Strauss I believe.
Amanda’s chili went over very, very well. It was all gone by the time everyone had a chance to get their fill. It’s a recipe she got from Jessica Lambeth. I’m not big on chili or onions, but even I like it. And it’s very filling.

Everyone played Apples to Apples tonight. We had a good time with it. It’s a very simple game, and in describing it it doesn’t sound very fun, but it is. Afterwards Mom and Dad went to bed. Josh disappeared too- he’s been sick all weekend. We had a very anemic New Year’s celebration. Andra was barely awake, Adam and Renee were sitting on the floor, Erin was next to Andra on the couch and Amanda and I were on the other couch. The countdown happened, the people who had people to kiss kissed their people and just about everyone went to sleep. I celebrated by chainsawing some people in half on Gears of War.

So long, 2006. You brought us a house of our own and nights on the beach.

Zach Dotsey