Wednesday, December 30, 2009

A Decade

Monday marked ten years that Tom and I have been married. That's a big one. I can hardly believe it's been that long, yet life before I knew my sweetie seems so far away.

We've lived in four states, had four kids, earned three degrees, and shared many, many laughs. There may have been a few tears shed every now and then, but way more laughs. Tom's humor was something I fell in love with early on. I loved how he could make me laugh when we were dating, and let me tell ya, he's still got it. It was hard to keep a straight face today as he worked out along side me to my Kathy Smith aerobics. It was nice of him to humor me, even though he was mostly mocking the whole thing.

I feel like a pretty lucky girl.

This is a picture from Tyler's baptism two months ago. That was indeed a special day.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Holiday Feeling

There is something about the Christmas season that just makes life better. Yes, it's busy...but I feel like a little Christmas Elf when am busying about, in the kitchen, with the wrapping paper, at the post office...not to mention keeping up with normal life.

Maybe it's because I am listening to Christmas music while I do all of this? I am a little obsessed with that--I can't get enough of it. But when I can sing along to my holiday favorites, I am in the Christmas mood, no matter what I'm doing--sewing a patch on Tyler's Cub Scout shirt, cooking lentils, sweeping Cheerios from under the high chair, trying to make fabric flower hair accessories. (some of yesterday's endeavors)

The month of December is never quite long enough--I surely don't do everything I dream to, and things are not as serene and picture-perfect as they could be. But I love this month. Precious memories with my family are always made, and the spirit of love and service is always there.

Saturday, December 12, 2009


You know your kids are into HP when...

*you find vessels filled with strange liquids on the kitchen counter.

*your three-year-old is heard telling her baby sister, "You're in Slytherin; I'm in Huffle-huff."

*swishing and flicking of wands is happening around the house, along with this advice, "it's Lev-i-OH-sah, not Lev-i-oh-SAH!"

Sunday, December 6, 2009

It's all a blur

Our camera has been acting weird lately. Every picture I take is dark. So as I review the photos saved on it lately, I expect to see some low-quality ones. Today as I did that I really found some gems. Obviously my kids got a hold of the camera (on Thanksgiving Eve, when I must have been unaware of them due to vacuum noise or something) and had it on a setting that I have certainly never tried. Or maybe the camera person and/or the subjects were just running like mad as the shots was taken. I don't know...

I really don't get it. I almost deleted them all. Then I looked at them again with a new eye. Maybe they are kind of cool, I thought.

And what I really like is that it gives you a glimpse of our house, while blurring over any lurking clutter or dishes in the sink.

So now you know what our house looks like, or how it would look if you were sprinting through it while being chased by a wild animal.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Thanksgiving Recap

We enjoyed a lovely Thanksgiving at home last week. Dinner was nice, with a classic and tasty menu, and a few friends to share it with. Tom is shocked year after year, at how much work it takes to pull off a Thanksgiving dinner...but then he is always happy with the results, and the fact that he can enjoy the meal a couple more times in the form of leftovers.

This year I was particularly happy with our Thanksgiving Eve. Of course I had a lot to accomplish that day, and the kids had the day off from school...which can either help or hurt my chances at a productive day. I decided to take proactive measures to ensure this worked in my favor.

So on Tuesday night, I quickly (slowing down enough to remember how to spell "vacuum" the second time I wrote it) drew up a list of everything I wanted the kids to be involved with the next day--fun stuff and chores alike. Tyler and Tessa had to sign up for at least six activities, and Eden, four. I strategically made sure there were only three "fun" projects on the list.

It worked like a charm! They discovered the list on the wall right away in the morning and were eager to attach their names to the various tasks, because they were choosing them after all. That is a brilliant parenting technique--making your children feel they are in control.

They got right to work, and worked hard, so we could get on to the more fun stuff. I forgot to take pictures of them slaving away, but apparently someone else took the liberty of catching Eden as she mopped. (she didn't even sign up for that one--wow:) It's an artsy, blurry shot.

When our house was sparkling, we put together our gingerbread village. I opted for a kit this year...wimpy, I know. But it cuts out sooo much of the mom prep-work, and gets right to the fun, kid-friendly part. My sisters will be so ashamed. :)

Of course I was still in the kitchen, late into the evening, preparing pumpkin bread, and cranberry-apple crisp, and roll dough...but that's just where I want to be on Thanksgiving Eve. My mission was accomplished: we had worked hard and played hard, which is the recipe for a good day in my book. Not every day unfolds as nicely, just the way I envision it, but this one did. That is something to give thanks for.