Showing posts with label Holiday. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Holiday. Show all posts

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

What Blog?

Today I was talking to the Princess about something and I mentioned "when I used to blog."  She asked me what I was talking about.  The more I tried to explain it to her the more confused she seemed.  That's when it hit me.  It has been so long since I blogged that she doesn't even remember me doing it.  Which takes it way beyond the procrastination mark to the quit mark.  But I never intended on quitting.  So, here we go again.  Let's see if I can get myself back on track.

I guess I should start by filling you in on the happenings around here.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Falling Short

This time of year, more than any other, the pressure is intense to get everything just right.  Pressure to be ready, pressure to go above and beyond, pressure to stop focusing on the wrong details, pressure to enjoy the season.

So many mixed messages.  "Are you ready?  Not much time left.  Hurry up!  Slow down.  More, bigger, better!  Simplify.  Shop till you drop.  Cherish family.  Enjoy the season!  Remember the meaning of it all."  All of the voices whispering.  "You're doing it wrong.  Get it together.  This is of utmost importance and you are blowing it."


Last week sickness hit the family.  Sickness.  Now.  Like I have time for this.  As if I don't have enough going on.  Sickness.

And when it finally passed, and I took a look around, I saw major setback.  I was already behind in my preparations.  My house wasn't quite clean enough to start getting out all the decorations.  I hadn't even pulled out the Advent stuff.  I was so behind.  Then add another week of just dragging ourselves through.  And do you know what happens to the house while I am waiting on two sick littles?  It gets wrecked.  Dishes piled up high and so much laundry.

I haven't even had time to address all the Christmas cards.  And I have already received two.  Two moms that have it more together than I do.

On St. Nicholas Day I forgot to put out their gifts until half way through the day.  I had to do the whole, sneak it out and try to pretend they have been there the whole time and no one noticed.

And here we are half way through Advent and we haven't even gotten out the Advent calendar.  Or the Jesse tree.  We haven't started making homemade ornaments for the Jesse tree like I promise every year we will do "next year."  Another year goes by and I still don't even own an Advent wreath.

And all the Pinterest moms are doing it so much better.

I remember my own childhood.  I remember doing the Jesse tree every year and lighting the candles on the Advent wreath.  I remember excitedly opening the doors on our Advent calendar.

I want my children to have those same memories.  To understand what Christmas is really about.

Mom had it together.  At least that's the way I remember it.  Funny thing is, I don't know for sure.  Did we always have all those things every year?  Did we ever get half way through Advent before we managed to dig it all out.  Maybe mom felt the same way I do and we were just too young to notice.  Maybe what really mattered was what we did and not what we didn't do.

Maybe other mothers have it less together than I think they do.  My friend, who sent the first card of the season.  Confided in me that half her cards went out without stamps.  Now she has to readdress and resend all those cards.  I'm ashamed to have felt a little relieved when she told me that.

I watch my kids get excited about their little pipe cleaner Advent wreaths.  And argue about who will get to put today's part of "The Story of Christmas" on the little tree.  And add a little bit of straw yarn to their wrapping paper tube manger to get it ready for the clothespin baby Jesus on Christmas.  In the back of my mind I see that box in the closet with all the other Advent items I haven't gotten out.  I don't even have the Nativity up!  Flashes of the Pinterest board, with all the other amazing ideas to take things above and beyond, fill my head.


Then I hear the Princess telling her brother, "Christmas is not about the presents.  It's about baby Jesus's birthday!"  I saw her eyes fill up with tears on the Sunday she was too sick to go to church because she didn't want to miss the second purple candle being lit.

I hear them make the connections.  Remembering a bible story, thinking to pray for someone, caring for each other and for "Mr. Cool."

Maybe I am doing something right?  Or maybe they are learning despite my shortcomings.

I think maybe there is a reason that now more than any other time of year we find ourselves falling short.

It's a pretty good reminder of what it's really all about.  Isn't it?

Because if we did have it all together.  If we were Pinterest perfect people.  We wouldn't even need Christmas.

Christ didn't come for the people who had their acts together.  He came for the struggling, for the weak, for the searching.

Even for the moms who are weeks behind on their blog, have a sink full of dishes, half a stack of Christmas cards to address, mount laundry ready to erupt, no Advent wreath, an undisplayed Nativity, and a mess in the corner where the Christmas tree is supposed to go.

Especially for those kinds of moms!

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Thursday, November 27, 2014

Simple Thanksgiving

Usually we host Thanksgiving dinner at our house.  Since we bought this house we have hosted every year with the exception of the year Matthew died.

This year the plan was the same.  We would host as we normally did.  Then things started to get complicated.  We struggled to work out all the details and nothing felt right.

And honestly, I was exhausted.  Mentally exhausted.

As an introvert, there are times when I just feel a strong sense of mental fatigue.  All I want to do is cave myself in a dark hole somewhere and rest.  Burrow into my blankets and snuggle up with my thoughts.  And the calm.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

A Holiday Gift Giving Guide: Gift Ideas for Mom

I figured since I shared my gift ideas for kids, I might as well do a little window shopping for myself the moms out there.*

A Holiday Gift Giving Guide: Gift Ideas for Mom #christmas #gift

Just a heads up.  I tend to like more practical gifts.  I know lots of people complain about practical gifts but I prefer to get something that makes my life easier.  Yes, Sometimes it's really nice to get something that's just for fun but if it's one or the other I lean practical.  I guess the important thing is know the receiver and plan accordingly.

Monday, November 24, 2014

A Holiday Gift Giving Guide: Gift Ideas for Kids

As I am organizing my Christmas shopping list this year I thought I would share a few gift ideas in case any of you need some inspiration.*

A Holiday Gift Giving Guide: Gift Ideas for Kids #christmas #gift

Ideas for Girls

My daughter bought this guitar for herself with her birthday money and she plays with it every day.  They also make a keyboard that I am considering getting her for Christmas.

Dream Dazzler Stylin' Guitar

A Holiday Gift Giving Guide: Gift Ideas for Kids #christmas #gift

I do NOT recommend a microphone.  Also bought with her birthday money.  Do yourself a favor and avoid the noise amplifier!  She loves it.  I do not.

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Just Some Halloween Pictures

And now I present you with the obligatory "day after Halloween photo dump."

Pumpkin carving.







It's always fun to go to a Halloween store ON Halloween for last minute Zombie makeup.

And a tad ironic when your "little Zombie" hugs you close in terror the entire time you are in the store.


The kids were excited to open their Halloween cards from my Aunt.


The cutest as always!


Zombie makeup application.


Makeup closeups.



Finally time for a little trick-or-treating.


Quit trying to eat your sister's BRAAINNSSS!



Back home showing off their Jack-o-lanterns.



Hope everyone had a super safe and fun Halloween and that you aren't feeling too sick from the candy hangover today.


Happy Feast of All Saints!

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Monday, April 21, 2014

A Whole Bunch of Easter Pictures

Wanna see what we did for Easter weekend this year?

You know you do.

Dim the lights and cue the seemingly endless slideshow of someone else's (totally adorable) children.

Good Friday-

In the spirit of Good Friday and remembering the sacrifice Jesus made for us all on the cross we decided to take a family trip to Six Flags.

I know you probably aren't getting the sacrificial element there but by the end of the day I was totally offering up my hunger (would you believe grilled fish is nowhere on the Six Flags menu) and sore feet.

It would seem the kids suffered too.  My husband had been planning the moment.  Their first trip to Six Flags.  The very first ride he would take them on.  The Aquaman.
 They would love it and he would finally have the ride buddies he has always wanted.
Things don't always go according to plan.

Monday, December 16, 2013

Decorating the Tree - A Mother's Tale

Mothers of toddlers,  I know right now it seems like you will never again be able to decorate the bottom half of your Christmas tree.

But do not despair.

Allow me to offer a glimmer of hope.

True story.

Once Upon a Christmas Past,

The Peanut, took a bite out of a glass ball ornament.  I was two steps behind him.

He was unharmed and remained unphased as I frantically and carefully removed shards of glass from his mouth.  Yes, frantically AND carefully.  That's motherhood in a nutshell.

Every year since then, our ornaments have moved their way further up the tree as the children have gotten taller.

Just when it seemed all hope was lost.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Saint Nicholas Day: The Gift of Giving



I have to really hand it to myself this year.  I finally have this whole Advent thing down.

Most years I am still trying to clean up the mess after Thanksgiving.  I have all these grand ideas of all the Advent traditions we should take part in.  It just never works out the way it appears in my head.

Last year I finally got somewhat prepared.  I finally printed out all those Jesse tree ornaments and cut them out AND laminated them.

I went out to the bookstores after Christmas and scored a couple of Advent books on clearance.
The Advent Storybook has a story to read each day leading up to Christmas.  Haven't started reading it yet but we will catch up on that.

The Story of Christmas book has little minibook ornaments that tell the Christmas story.

This year.  This is my year.

Check it out.

We have not just one, but TWO Advent wreaths.
An Advent calendar (thank you Target dollar spot.)
The Nativity scene is set up awaiting the arrival of the baby Jesus.  (The Jesus has actually been missing for years but I always put in a little bundle of cloth on Christmas and no one has noticed yet.  I really should get a new Nativity set!)
And in the whole spirit of Advent's theme of waiting.

The Christmas Tree is being slowly set up.
This progress has taken three days already.  We could probably drag it out until Christmas if I try hard enough.  A branch a day or something.

Once we get it up we can start putting the little book ornaments on it each day...
For now we just hang them on the lower branches.

Yup.  As you can see, I have it all together.

Oh, you wanted a picture of the Jesse tree?  Um, well it's still in a closet somewhere.  I'll get to that.

Waiting remember?

And my crowning achievement?!

The best St. Nicholas feast day celebration yet!

Sunday, April 7, 2013

No Housework Day - A Mess is Born

Happy No Housework Day!
In honor of No Housework Day I thought I would allow my children free reign to systematically destroy mess up the house while I document it with hourly pictures to post here on my blog.

Genius?

Lunatic?

You decide!

This should be entertaining (for someone other than the person who has to clean up the mess after this whole experiment is over...)

Who is that person?  I certainly wouldn't volunteer for that job!  No siree.  Wouldn't catch me...

Wait...
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Good thing it's No Housework Day!  I certainly wouldn't want to have to clean up that mess!!
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