We spent Christmas with Lori, Ryan and family.  What a good time we had.  You may not know but Texas is a big place.  It is longer from Port Isabel, in the south to Wylie, near Dallas than it is from Grand Junction, CO to Flagstaff, AZ.  By two hours.  From here to South Dakota, in a straight line, half the distance in in Texas.  Because it was so far to Lori’s we rented a car, a Ford Focus.  After paying almost $200 for a weeks rental and buying gas we still saved about $100.  The Focus gets 38mpg, our truck 17.  Gas was $2.99/gal and diesel was $3.55/gal.  Add the cost of an oil change and wear on our expensive tires and we saved quite a bit.

As you might expect, Christmas was a real circus in the Warren household.  All of the kids, as good as they are, were wound tight in anticipation.  So were all the adults, although we might not be accused of being so good.  We had a grand time watching everyone open their gifts.  Lori and Ryan did a superb job this year of finding something unique for each child that fit their style perfectly although I have to question their sanity with Stone’s gift.  Each child got several gifts but one “special” one.


Stones’ primary gift was an electronic drum set.  What were they thinking?  Fortunately it requires headphones or an amplifier before it can be heard, except for the times when the players aim is off and they hit the sides of the rubber drum heads.  Everyone took a turn at playing them.  DSC_0159

Amberlynn got an electric scooter.  She attends a school just a couple of blocks from the house and the school where Lori works.  She rides to Lori’s school and walks to her  school from there and walks back at the end of the day.  She was really excited about taking it out for a test drive but had to wait until the battery was fully charged.  DSC_0140  DSC_0146


While we were in Wylie I had been playing with my guitar and Jade took an interest in it so I taught her how to play a song she knew from church.  She picked it up quite easily and was excited to show off her new talent to her family when they came out to the trailer.  So for Christmas she got a guitar and accessories.  I hope she can get some lessons and master it.


Gemma got a couple of Air Soft guns.  Now that is my kind of girl.  Pretty, smart, personable and likes guns.  What more could a boy ask for in a girl.  Ryan took her outside and showed her how to use them safely and she was one happy girl.  I am glad she got them.  Kids need to learn how to be responsible and safe around firearms and this is the perfect way to teach them that.

Ryan got a new phone and Lori got a new dresser, made by Ryan.  I got a new Kindle Fire HDX and Linda got wind chimes although she had to wait until we got back to Port Isabel to get them.

It was a quick trip up and back but was well worth the effort.

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