Christmas is the season and there’s usually a reason….

Christmas is such a great season! so many exciting times and fun activities! and while Christmas is so much more than a day (as i attempted explaining to my 4 year old when saying ‘merry Christmas’ to people in passing) it’s actually a whole season and a spirit! and as with any holiday there are good ones and bad ones. but in spite of all the things that happen good or bad (now and throughout the year) there’s a reason for everything. it might not be always apparent but there is a reason….so hold tight to your family members, give thanks for the blessings in your life, and love with all you have.

this Christmas was spent a little differently than originally planned but that’s the holidays! the wonderful and crazy and happy holidays! it’s the season to be thankful and i am so very thankful! we spent the holiday at home snuggled up in front of the pretty tree and fire- my husband and our children. i got unexpectedly sick with something resembling the flu (yuck) and am definitely glad to be home while recuperating. we had such a busy couple of weeks leading up to Christmas and it is so nice to sit and just enjoy. to relax and unwind. laughing with family, playing silly games, cooking meals together, enjoying each other’s company, and taking in the (aforementioned) pretty tree and decorations…

pretty tree

and each loved one enjoying their presents…..

handsome husbandtoo cool for school sonlittle one

as this year draws to a close i am thankful for everything we’ve gotten to do and experience. i’ve been able to cross a few things off my bucket list (oktoberfest and dave matthews band live-and the added bonus of the lumineers) this year and got to learn lots new things! we also had what is our first (and i hope will be annual) Christmas cookie decorating party! it was tons of work leading up to it but was fun by kids and adults alike! the kids, surprisingly, were not as crazy with the decorating as i had thought they would be. they were orderly and respectful of the various bowls of colored frosting- so the colors actually stayed the correct color! and they took turns with sprinkles and toppings. even the grown ups decorated a cookie or two! all in all, it was a success and something i intend to try to do yearly now no matter where we live!

so “i’m going on break” as the late (but great) comedian mitch hedberg said for the rest of the year but i’m a little wiser and a lot happier…. Fröhliche Weihnachten für Sie und Ihre!

family time

and while my present didn’t exactly come under the tree this year she seems to have made her home there for now….welcome hilde….

introducing hilde the cat

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fast forward…

as a kid i used to sit and write my name, initials, shapes, etc in the following chair:

stands the test of time

the back is velvet and i could spend hours writing/drawing on the chair. fast forward (however many years!) and my mom gave me the chair to go with the desk we’ve been passing back and forth for forever and i put it in my library/office/sitting room/comfy room. and lo and behold, j walks in this morning,sits in the chair, turns around to face the back, and started drawing. i find it absolutely amazing and wonderful. never would i have EVER imagined my own child doing that all those years ago when i was drawing on it. of course when i was a child i didn’t think about children of my own (obviously) but wow. it’s simply amazing. i wonder if you ever get used to seeing your kids follow in some of your footsteps. watching them use or enjoy or play with something you did as a kid. and to think my mom used to do the same thing too. how neat the things that stand the test of time. and who knows, fast forward many (many) more years and maybe his kids will do the same…

(and just because, here’s pics of the goofy kid feeling soo much better who absolutely adores his pup and wants to take care of her and make sure she is warm….)

goofy kid!rough life

hurry home…

it seems i am not quite as interesting without my husband around. look at my blog! life (and my blog) seems a bit duller without him around. now i am also not in germany exploring a new (to me) country however what was interesting about germany was interesting because i was with my husband (and son) and we did a lot of exploring as a family. see- it goes back to being boring when marv isn’t around! what can i say, he definitely makes life more exciting and interesting. and he puts up with me….major saint points at certain times for that one. but as a husband (in my humble opinion) should do- he makes me more interesting, more lively, more fun! now part of that comes with just being there to balance out the good and bad in life. and part of it comes from who we both are. but a lot of it comes from the fact that we really do a lot more exploring when we are together. he pushes me and i’d like to think i push him as much but who knows…

i think the story of our engagement is a great example of how he makes me more, well just more! we were in ireland on an impromptu vacation. upon landing we rented a car and decided to drive around the country to our hearts content. no plans, no reservations, just stopping at what we thought looked fun. luckily we both are on the same wave length when it comes to vacations and agree that a vacation doesn’t have to be planned and can just be us doing whatever we want, whenever we want- true freedom. so on the very small list of things we’d thought might be fun to tour was the cliffs of moher. i’d been told it was a must and while all of ireland was a must for me well, these were really a must. now it was november and i know this may be shocking to anyone who knows anything at all about ireland, but it rained most of our days there. and on a very cold morning we left galway and traveled south. bound for the cliffs. it was not raining when we left but cold, overcast, and cloudy. however as we got further south the rain started spitting down. when we got to the cliffs parking lot i was suddenly unsure about seeing the cliffs. i don’t mind cold weather when i’m dressed for it….and while i was dressed warmly and very well layered, i was not prepared for getting battered and soaked. with no hat and only thin leather gloves i was not prepared for the cold, wet, pounding rain mixed with what was suddenly a killer windstorm. nope,  definitely not ireland prepared…..

so suddenly feeling very hesitant i looked at marv and said, “ehhh let’s go. perhaps we can come back through here on another day. it’s just too cold and spitting rain and we’ll see it on the way back or another time.” but oh no, he was insistent. he called me out on my bullshit, cajoled me into getting out of the car, promised to keep me warm, and told me he was going. sigh…so we went to the visitor center first to look for gifts and to do some recon on the layout and history of the cliffs. and we found hats. i still have (and still wear) my hat and mittens. marv got a hat too…not sure he’s worn it since! but i still think its great! anyways we got ready to go, tucked our few packages under our arms, and headed out the door to the cliffs. now it wasn’t easy. i literally held onto marv’s arm because as i would take a step the wind would threaten to knock me back or down- it was that strong. and the rain was every bit as intense as the wind. but up the steps we went to the little castle and the edge of the cliffs. peering down to see the waves crashing into the rocks and walking from side to side to see as much as we could of the cliffs. and we laughed and joked and had a blast fighting our way with the wind and rain. i never saw our day going like that when the rain started. but thankfully he balanced out the chicken part of me and i had more fun because of it. and it was a picture perfect day- wind and rain and cold and all…and that was even before his proposal at the cliffs!

(i’d show you a picture of him in his hat but i’m not so sure he likes those photos and, well, i like my marriage!)

at the cliffs

wild weeks….

so monday morning came like usual…it was a monday. i was up early getting us back into our routine after a busy and fun weekend. j got to ride in a local parade after having the most amazing weekend herding larger than life dogs at my folks house, getting in lots of stories and fun with his grandparents, and becoming an artiste’…..

appy3future artiste' at work

and so monday began. it actually got off to a pretty good start and by the time i grabbed j from daycare i was feeling pretty good. another monday down right?! almost my last one alone till marv comes home. good monday. by 6:30 pm when i couldn’t get j to eat anything and he was complaining of a headache i was thinking that it was back to a normal monday. it sooned turned into an anything but normal monday when my poor little one started getting sick. the short of it is that j has some sort of flu or virus. and has been very sick since monday night. thankfully we were finally able to get the vomiting under control but he is still struggling to get better. he has good times throughout the day and bad times throughout the day. and work has been crazy busy but i have been working from home to get j settled and on the road to health. its these times that i am so blessed that i can work from home and make sure j is comfortable and resting. although this week i feel like i’m either in frantic mode to wrap up an assignment or panicking to make sure i’m not missing a dosage of medicine or trying to find what the one right thing is that j will eat so he can start to get strength and trying to stay awake since i’m not getting sleep while i’m taking care of him all night. but he’s getting better and thats all that matters!

isn't this just the saddest thing ever?

so its just one of those wild weeks. luckily december is shaping up to be really fun. lots of plans so getting the sickness out of the way now before the holidays is probably best. although i do wish he didn’t get sick at all. marv will be home in just a little over a week and is sending the remaining Christmas presents i needed from germany. and then i can start shipping all the packages out! he did send me a few pictures from the market area and i must say i miss being there like crazy!!! isn’t it just gorgeous….

the market with its pretty lights.... market shopping good thing j doesn't know about this!

sigh….isn’t it just so lovely?!!! not to mention the hot spiced wine/cider they have…..sigh!

but we have been having our fun here too. as i mentioned j got to ride in the local parade.and while i attempted to take a few pictures of him in the parade none of those came out so instead we just have the before picture…

getting ready for the parade

i’m also planning my/our first (soon to be annual) Christmas cookie decorating party! basically i’m going to lay a drop cloth under and on the dining room table, make and bake a ton of cookies, make some frosting, put on ridiculously loud Christmas music, make a ton of fun, festive adult beverages, and invite over everyone to enjoy the evening! the kids can play/decorate and the adults can socialize! but of course that means decorating the house and getting a tree are in our near future and my husband will likely be really busy the moment he gets home (sorry dear!). and who knows what else! and that’s all before Christmas! something tells me this month will go by entirely too fast so perhaps i better start thinking of my new year’s resolutions now….

perspective…..

saw the following online and thought it struck a chord. as we move through life we are either moving forward or at a stand still. i think how you perceive things is the answer to the question of what direction we are moving in.

perception is a choice, and you can choose to see your personal history in positive ways or in ways that keep you stuck. you can choose to see people in your life as the cause of your problems and wait for them to change so you can improve your situation. or you can choose to see yourself as the active agent creating the reality you live in and then choose to make the changes necessary to improve things.

i stood still for a long time for fear of the unknown. but i can say it’s infinitely better to move forward even if there are bumps in the road and everything may not come out exactly as you had planned. sometimes when we are forced down a road we had zero interset in taking the results are even lovelier than what we were looking for…