For sure, the best meal I can expect to eat in any given year is the meal I get to have at the annual "Tyson Steele Associates" Christmas dinner. This year, we returned to Marche, my personal favorite destination - and it was probably my favorite year, not just for the food, but for the company and warmth of the evening.
The atmosphere was definitely enhanced by the snow everywhere you looked. Such a rarity to have snow stick around in Eugene - and to have it around on a night at a location like this, special indeed.
It was also a bit smaller of a group. One of the couples had prior engagements and couldn't make it. Very sadly, another couple, including the company's accountant that spent a day a week at the office, was not able to make it either. James (the accountant), was just diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. This has been heartbreaking to all of us, just so hard to grasp and accept that this "member of the work family" only has weeks to live (even less by this time this is posted). Please be in prayer for him, he is definitely not ready or at peace about passing on.
This is not a "group picture" kind of event - in fact, I felt a little sneaky trying to take the snapshots I did. (It's not a secrecy thing, just kind of a "don't want to be imposing" thing). However, in the picture to the right, Tyson, and his wife, Gjusta, are seated at the head of the table. Patty is facing our direction at the right of the picture. Kinea is the wife of Brian, who works with John, and we were singing "Happy Birthday" to her as her birthday was on Thursday. In the bottom left of this collage are Daniel and Genna. Daniel is John's buddy at work - we really tried to "work it" so that we sat next to them this time around as they are such fun to be around. Mission accomplished!
Such a beautiful setting, so festive. After being treated to a delicious meal, being gifted (WAY) generously by Gjusta in a Bello gift certificate, and feeling the "love" towards John and thankfulness of him being back - we really walked away more grateful than ever of this position John is in - and that God put him in this career path. What a plan He had that we never would have expected.