Christmas in Wisconsin

From California, I flew to Minneapolis, MN and rode to my hometown in Wisconsin.
I have enjoyed Wisconsin winters since I was born in the middle of one. Unlike winters in Ohio and California, which have mostly overcast grey weather, Wisconsin usually boasts clear (or only partly cloudy) skies.
I also enjoy the snow-covered rolling hills…
..and corn fields.

Of course, the primary reason for a visit to Wisconsin is my family. I try to visit my family each Christmas. We share conversation, update each other on our lives, exchange photographs, and eat large amounts of excellent food. I make a trip to the Catholic church for the formal celebration of Christ’s birth.

As is traditional, my immediate family has a dinner on Christmas Eve to exchange presents. My extended family has a much larger gathering on Christmas Day.
This is my grand-aunt (my maternal grandmother’s sister) at our Christmas dinner.

My mother expresses her gratitude for a gift of new snow pants.

My sister smiles over her new watch.
This is an emergency kit for her car that my parents gave her.

My stepfather, in the foreground, is a rather avid Green Bay Packers fan. Here he is holding a gift of three DVDs chronicling the three seasons in which the Packers have won a Super Bowl, so far.

I was also able to visit my friend Vanessa and her family again. This is the view from the window of their spacious and beautiful new three-story house. Their wood burning heater is at the right edge of the frame.

Adaylen and Joshua are two of Vanessa and Brian’s three children. Here Adaylen is playing caretaker to her younger brother.
For most Winters since I received my camera, I have taken a long-exposure photograph of our Christmas tree illuminated only by its own lights. I am not sure why, but I neglected to do that this year. I did capture similar photographs of the city’s Christmas light display in a park by Bugle Lake. Here, you can see the park glowing across the frozen lake. On the left, you can also see the clock tower on the building that houses the Opera House, Library, Fire Department, and City Hall. This photograph is a little overexposed and dominated by the orange glow of a low pressure sodium vapor street light.

This is a panorama of the Christmas display as seen from within the park.

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