Thank you all for the nice notes last week.  I'm still struggling to get over whatever type cold I have and I've filed a claim with the insurance company regarding my car.  Hopefully I can get all of these issues resolved this week and get on with the holidays!

My dad was a military kid and grew up in a military compound.  His younger brother would always tell his parents that, when he grew up and had lots of money, he would buy a big compound where the grandparents and siblings, with all of their respective families, could live together.  Well, I found that compound, although it's not large enough for our extended family.  The grounds are made up of the main house, a gardener's cottage and guest house, with a lovely pool.  The main house is three stories and replete with wood paneling on the ground floor.  It's not that nasty faded 80's wood paneling and I actually don't mind it, as it gives the whole space a very warm and cozy feel.  The third floor bedroom with the dormer windows is a little girl's dream.  The open plan kitchen / dining room / kitchen would be put to good use during the holidays and I know exactly where I'd put the Christmas tree.