It was a good visit. (That side of my family is all Mormon, and sometimes before visiting them I end up mentally rehearsing a bunch of arguments (often with my dad's ghost) about things that never actually come up because everyone's much too interested in being family than talking politics or whatever. Which is really just as well.)
I brought games (because I am The Games Expert in my family -- apparently everyone gets excited about that when it's my turn to get them a gift in our Christmas round-robin, which is great news, because I thought I was mostly being kinda lazy so I'm glad to hear that my plan is working) and my three young nephews were VERY excited to help me lug four bags of games in from the car. (A bunch of our games just live in bags now because it makes life easier.)
After visiting and dinner (salad and spaghetti with meat sauce), we played several rounds of We Didn't Playtest This At All, which was a big hit. We also played a game of Carcassonne, which works well with all ages, even the first-grader (though he was teamed with his aunt). And then after the two youngest went to bed, we also played a game of Dominion (Hinterlands expansion). We gave JJ two extra turns (since he'd never played before at all) and my sister one extra turn (since she'd never seen these cards before), and the final scores were 36 (Sherilyn), 33 (me), and 30 (JJ), so that's a really nice way of handicapping the game to adjust for skill.
Yesterday I pickled more crabapples, this time with a five-spice powder recipe, which I think will turn out really well.
On Saturday I went over to the Nevilles' for a dinner party with them, Thomas's parents, and two couples from Karen and Thomas's respective workplaces, which was just lovely. His parent brought a salmon from Alaska to grill, which was excellent. I made a lime curd pie (which turned out really well and was pretty simple), and then decided one pie was not enough so also made pistachio pie, both of which were hits.
Um... Otherwise last week was mostly lots of EDF 2025 and working on stuff for revisions to my paper. Oh, and on Friday we had a meeting with KH, who is one of the coauthors of the fanciest of the techniques that my new thing improves on, and she was really excited about the fact that mine works as well / better and runs 100x faster. We have plans to collaborate and use my technique as part of some work they're getting ready to do. So that's very cool.