So that you have an approximate idea of what I did over the Thanksgiving holiday, I present you with this, the Schedule for an Average Day with the Cousins in Saskatchewan (Icky Weather Version, times are estimated):
9:30 - Wake up. Roll out of bed. Put on my clothes.
10:00 - Meet with Fligg family and Schroeder family in the Fliggs' condo for brunch.
11:00 - Have an informal family church service. That is, sing songs while Randal plays guitar, listen as Aunt Gloria reads a passage from scripture, listen as we put Uncle Ray on the spot for an impromptu sermon (topic of "guard your conscience"), discuss whether it would be better to be lucky or to be good (decided on lucky. I may write a post on this sometime), sing a few more songs, gawk as the Schroeders display their incredible musical talent.
12:00 - Try to juggle. Watch brother try to juggle. Fail.
12:15 - Eat way too much lunch. Discuss personality types with cousins. Lie on the ground contentedly because there is no room left on the couches.
1:00 - Leave warm condo to chase down brother who is playing in a snowy field with cousins. Pack up to leave condo.
1:30 - Hug Fligg family goodbye, oust Schroeder parents from the Schroeder van. Celebrate because all the kids fit into the Schroeder van (parents celebrate because the Heinrichs van will not have any children). Claim passenger seat. Begin the drive to the Schroeder house. Discuss cowboy hats, how to hide fugitives despite satellite imaging and heat sensors, and sing along to Junkyard Poets. Notice that Randal has taken the impromptu sermon to heart - he shakes his head at people who ruin their consciences by speeding.
3:30 - Realize that parents have been trying to call all our phones. Learn that we are not going to the Schroeder farm, but to Grandma's house. Arrive at Grandma's. Apologize for missing Uncle Ray's call(s). Give Uncle Ray hug to boost his crushed sense of self-esteem.
3:45 - Team up with Jared and beat Aunt Ang and Thomas at pool. Do victory dance with Jared. Try to make pool balls jump over other pool balls. Contemplate trigonometry with Jared.
5:3o - Eat pizza. Teach baby cousin Gabriella to draw. Watch America's Funniest Home Videos (which aren't that funny)
6:45 - Pile kids into the van. Strut around because Uncle Ray grants me override power on all decisions (I am the oldest, after all). Sing along to KJ-52. Arrive at movie theatre. Make Logan sing rap song by himself. Make Thomas do beat-box by himself. Try to make them do it at the same time. Fail.
7:10 - Buy tickets to movie. Apologize to woman sitting behind us because her kid can't see over Randal's cowboy hat. Move Randal into another seat and make him slouch. Meet sister's friend Sam. Watch Up!
9:00 - Go back to Grandma's while singing along to more KJ-52. Randal purposely takes us on a detour to go by Grandma's old house. Who says cowboys aren't sentimental? Play pool with cousins and siblings and Sam. End up on the failing team, despite practice earlier in the day. Snack. Play noisy game of "THIS IS A PEN!"
10:30 - Pile back into the van, drive to the town of Balgonie while singing along to Family Force 5 and Relient K. Drop Sam off. Drive to the Schroeder farm.
11:00 - Arrive at Schroeder house. Play ditty on the piano. Watch as Jared listens once then adds flourishes and plays ditty much better than I. Actually, it's no longer a ditty. It's a blues concerto movement. Have dance/karaoke party to VeggieTales music with brother, Logan, and Thomas.
11:30 - Have dance party shut down by Aunt Ang. Bring suitcases in from van. Veg on couch, reading, while cousins play some sort of video game. Try to stay awake.
12:30 - Go upstairs and discuss theology with dad, sister, uncle, and aunt. Learn why Uncle Ray had to take a lie detector test. Vow to never leave keys in vehicle ignition while at work. Tease Aunt Ang for having boyfriends before Uncle Ray. Listen to Aunt Ang maintain that she didn't like boys, just free movies.
1:45 - Have cousins join the conversation. Discuss the dipsticks that tried to frame Jared in a theft.
3:00 - Break up conversation and go to bed.
3:30 - Fall asleep while wondering what on earth brother is doing with the cousins upstairs that makes so much noise...
“There's no excuse to be bored. Sad, yes. Angry, yes. Depressed, yes. Crazy, yes. But there's no excuse for boredom, ever.” Viggo Mortensen