Our first Christmas as a family of three
evidenced by the growth of gifts under the tree
Merry 1st Christmas little man. Looking forward to many more 🙂
Our first Christmas as a family of three
evidenced by the growth of gifts under the tree
Merry 1st Christmas little man. Looking forward to many more 🙂
The holidays often include so much fun and alcohol that the title may have been more literal than intended for previous years. This year, however, is a slightly different tale.
Recognizing the gloomy forecast early in the week, I opted to leave work early on Wednesday and meet the husband and dog-child so we could make the 4-hour commute “home.” Unlike me, we had a specific itinerary for the festivities including stops to make, what to pack for each day, where to stay each night, a number of presents for the dog to open each day, and the perfect metrics for making everything fit into the Pilot. The husband was in charge of “prepping” the dog for the trek home, not knowing what we were about to face- we wanted him good and tired. I had coordinated all the wrapping paper and gifts so that each design was meant for specific days. (I’ll say this is SO unlike me, I’m not quite sure what this pregnancy has done to my adventurous side!) By 1:30 we were locked, stocked and barreling on our way.
We rolled into our friend house on Wednesday night (of which we haven’t seen since Memorial Day weekend) just as the snow began to fall and the wind began to brew. We re-acquainted Diesel with the kids, and nestled in for the evening. Another family of friends topped by and the night went on like usual- telling stories, entertaining children, learning new Christmas songs (btw-thanks Whitie and Tim- we can’t stop singing “ding- fries are done!”), planning upcoming camping excursions and celebrating in general. As we approached the wee hours of the morning we decided it was time.
By morning we heard the snowplows scrape by, we knew we may have some adventures ahead of us as we angled north for the next leg of the trip. After the husband again “prepped” the dog and helped clear the driveway, we had a bit of time for playing in the snow with the kids (both big and small). Diesel had a few snowball fights and Tim established a sledding track right under the car! Before long, it was time to go and we packed up again…following the metrics of what needed to get packed where for the optimum capacity in the Pilot. (After moving 14 times I have perfected the skill of “space management”).
Again we were facing a forecast nearing 20″ of snow, with likely snow/sleet mix. We prepared for the worst and thankfully arrived to Brent’s parents before the heart of the storm hit. We arrived just in time to help with snow removal. We quickly nestled in. THis was my first time back since his parents officially retired and moved up north permanently. His mom was busting at the seams looking for storage, and entertained us with the things she would pull out of the darndest places. With retirement thought, brought a king-sized bed to the guest bedroom, a luxury Brent and I haven only experienced on our honeymoon! While we were hoping for a nap- arriving after noon on Christmas eve would allow no such thing. His parents were anxious to show us “the Big House,” the new place his parents would hopefully be occupying. We prettied ourselves up a bit, snuck in a peak at the new house and then met Brent’s godparents for a few beverages at the local hangout…Tom and Jerry’s are a delicacy up in those parts- unfortunately there is no good virgin recipe, so I abstained. Speaking of virgins, Christmas eve I experienced my first Catholic mass. As Brent claims I was a little flustered not knowing the routing- stand up sit down, kneel…not to mention all the hand gestures and different ways of saying things. As returned from church things were falling a bit more in-line with the weather forecast. HEAVY snow switching to down pour rain, then back to snow. THis would continue throughout Christmas day….the only good thing going was that the temperatures were staying above freezing making things more slushy and messy than icy. Plans would be revised come Christmas morning as Brent’s remaining siblings made the decision to stay home at the advise of the weather man. So the celebration scaled back….ie Brent’s mom only made a ham instead of a ham and turkey! By afternoon we had been cooped up, plump full of food and searching channels for something entertaining. The dogs throughly entertained us, playing as usual, tiring us out just looking at them! Before long we were gearing up for a trek to see Brent’s cousins…which brought more food, fun and conversation!
By Saturday it was time to make the long, undesirable trip home. This time the roads were less than ideal, the trip from Brent’s parents to home didn’t allow for as many stops, and all together this part seems dreadful. We were packed, cleaned, and filled with food by 9:30 AM and had 5 hours ahead of us. By 11 Am the roads were finally beginning to slush up. During our gas and stretch stops- Windshield washer fluid was the hot commodity of the day! By evening we met up with my family for a preliminary celebration, hearing all about what the nieces and grandparents witness over their Christmas. We made it home to prep a few things for our final CHRISTMAS celebration. (I say christmas because we still have 2 more New Year’s gathering this week.)
Seeing how this post is WAY too long already I’ll save the final celebration for a different post to allow for a few quotes and noteworthy events to report on! As you may have gathered, 2009 brought us a fabulous Christmas holiday to share great times with friends and family. Closing the books on the holidays always makes me a little down, as the magicalness of the holiday spirit fade. However this year, things will certainly change come February which might break up the winter months 🙂
While the Holiday season has nearly passed I thought I’d share a few highlights thus far! surprisingly I’ve been extremely good at getting everything done in a timely fashion.
Christmas cards were completed and in the mail the Sunday after Thanksgiving (Sorry some were WAY later, I had to search a few addresses since our computer crashed last year). In case you weren’t on the NICE list this year- here’s a glimpse at our 2009 Christmas picture
We barricaded Diesel into the living room so we could clean the floors. He was bound and determined to help however he could. He even fore-went the treats to Supervise.
(recognize the revolving apothecary jars- Spring, Fall, now winter)
the following day I left for Washington DC for work for the week, and everything seemed to go to hell. The fully decorated tree was no longer lighting. Eventually the husband figured it was the bottom strand on the tree creating havoc, so he surpassed them in the pecking order and moved onto strand 2. That same day Diesel discovered ornaments and decided to try a few. He’s particularly fond of the “kid’s tree” I have on the window ledge in the dining room decorated with a bunch of stuffed ornaments from my childhood and adorned with festive stuffed animals. While no major surgery was done- everyone survived unscathed- he certainly took a liking to them. He also found my gingerbread cut-out ornaments rather tasty (or maybe not- he only devoured 1). The following day, Wisconsin experienced a TRUE blizzard. The entire state was mandated to be closed via the Governor. Off course, I was still working in Washington with blue skies and 50 degree weather. The husband attempted to snowblow (we upgraded from 2 shovels from last winter) the 14 plus inches off the driveway. Only to have several equipment malfunctions- thus taking over 8 hours to snowblow the driveway and 2 sidewalks. All the while the dog’s in-ground fence and collar decided not to work either and Diesel kept making friends with the neighbors next door!
I arrived home Friday that week and took to baking. After 1 1/2 days we made caramels, peanut butter balls, peanut blossoms, Christmas Wreaths, snowballs, a few snacks for upcoming pig outs, planned some home cooked meals (for a change) and tried a fabulously easy recipe: Ice Cream Sandwich Torte- amazingly delicious, and easy! Diesel helped clean out the cool whip container!
It was the first time in years I accomplished all the mandated Holiday to-dos before the holidays struck.
Something that took a backseat this year was shopping, but we managed to fit a few power hours in this past weekend and accomplish the task. As of right now (Tuesday, Dec. 22nd at 6:41 PM), Cards were created and sent, all decorating was done, 7 different holiday cookies and candies were made and some even shared, all Christmas shopping has been done, the house and car have been cleaned and all gifts are wrapped and I am partially packed to head to the other side of the state (just awaiting some laundry).
Hope you all have a fabulous holiday season 🙂
I type this blog during the only moment of free time i have = 2: 53 AM. While things have been stellar for the last several weeks of pregnancy, I am battling insomnia at the moment and thought I’d be productive.
In all honesty, I hit the third trimester over a month ago and things have been fabulous (I’m sure I’ll eat these words in a few weeks). I have gotten the heartburn under control- unfortunately holiday sweets spikes it into a intolerable trait- so my weight will thank me later. Sleeping through the night has been an on-and-off challenge, however I really can’t complain when I take a 2 hour nap before going to bed. Cravings have stayed under control the entire pregnancy no late night rendezvous. Milk may have been the one consistent staple! The growing “basketball-ness” of the belly has limited my range of motion, so things like tying my shoes have become a think of the past. Thankfully slip-ons are in style, right?!?
What has been the most exciting change is the crazy acrobatics going on inside of me. I’m not sure when this child sleeps (I really hope baby is forced into tranquility by seeing daylight ;)…but I may want to sign it up for either martial arts or gymnastics, if characteristics in utero carry over. Baby has some mad skills. From the outside things seem subliminal- especially when baby is aware there is an audience. A little hand on the belly and you would sense a completely different story. Brent’s favorite pregnancy quotes thus far: “get off the cervix, get off the cervix” or “seriously child, can’t you find some other organ to play with…my bladder is exhausted!”
I know I’ve promised pictures of baby’s room…it’s coming. I decided to take care of this we call Christmas, hence baby decorating has taken a backseat. It also requires my husband to take the GUN paraphernalia out of the baby’s room- I’m hoping some public attention to the matter will miraculously find a peaceful solution :). The husband is also tackling the project of building a dresser/changing table to find my specifications. We were unsuccessful in finding the right combination to fit our needs. The husband was tied up catering to outdoor Christmas decorating, hunting, and helping a friend build some Christmas gifts…so I’ve been assured it will happen starting the day after Christmas!
We have FINALLY registered, and that was a task utterly confusing for the new parents to be. I hope our sense of practicality took a front seat to the craziness of crap they say we need. Maybe I’ll be a cruel mother, but tell me why I need to warm the wipes before cleaning the shit off my child’s bum. I don’t know that I’ve ever had a luxurious warm wad of toilet paper before wiping my ass. I’m just saying! If I’m missing something and setting myself up to be a horrible mother please let em know now- I can change my ways if warm wipes=sleeping baby!
Speaking of sleeping baby…our dog child is patiently awaiting cuddle time. While I’m totally planning on posting before the holidays, Wedensday at 1 PM is quickly approaching….we are braving the predicted blizzards to spend the holidyas with Brent’s family on the other side of the state. I haven’t seen the family or crew of friends since Memorial Day weekend. I guess I was pregnant then, but even I didn’t know it! I hope you have have a jouyous holiday season. 🙂
The husband and I FINALLY picked out a Christmas tree the other night. It came in a box… after near-wedding-calling-off-Christmas-tree-fight last year, we decided to jump on a pretty snazzy deal on a fancy artificial tree…and I have no regrets.
Diesel on the other hand is in a state of complete confusion. He’s still a puppy ( an 84 lb puppy I might add) and hasn’t experienced Christmas with us yet. He was sure to help us out in every way he though he could. He sneakily stole the top of the tree and pranced into the other room joyfully “More sticks to chew on.” When we put a ca-bash to that then he decided to pitch in and learn from the tree-straightening pro himself…
After that was taken care of, he helped tangle himself in lights put the lights on the tree. (how can you say no to this face, seriously…I take pictures instead!)
I continued putting lights on the tree as the husband untangled them for me. We both were pretty consumed in our work. I was about this far…
…when Dieseldecided to say “piss on it.” Okay maybe he didn’t say that but Brent caught him in the act-leg raised all ready to mark his new tree. Thankfully Brent caught him and bundled up to entertain him outside for a while. (Notice how nice Brent was doing at his untangling-the-lights-job?!? see bottom left corner). Needless to say I carried on with the festivities alone, er, if you call belting out to channel 900 (Sounds of the Season) and spending some bonding time with frosty, alone time then, yep I was all over it. (Notice Frosty and the ingredients) The lantern was just there to add the missing pine scent I was yearning for.
I certinaly need the caffiene to power through all my ideas and get this decorating business rolling. Up to this point my decorating entailed the contents of 4 unpacked “Christmas Decorations” rubbermaid bins, newspapers, boxes of every shape and size thrown strategically throughout every possible counter, table, seating, or window sill space remotely available. I did muster up the courage to get my “Winter Wonderland” table done the night before…which set the plan for holiday decorations for 2008. But before we get to the plan, let’s check in with Diesel one last time
He was being SO GOOD that I opted to give him an early Christmas present, unfortunately I didn’t take the time to wrap it first. ( I know this picture is blurry…but look at the size of this rawhide. This is his second one- he loves them things although they are a little awkward to carry, he runs into doors, walls, drops it in his food dish…did I mention his spatial awareness is a bit off yet!)
Okay back to the plan. As I mentioned I already had the “Winter Wonderland” table set up in the dining room
and since I have serious issues with themed things…the dining room just became the snowman/Winterroom. Which translate to anything related to snowmen or winter will end up in the dining room, which became a problem about 7 minutes after I made the plan. But I was determined. MOST of my holiday decor was Snowmen and Wintery bliss. But I really wanted a Pretty tree. I was envisioning gold and red as the colors. As I started arranging the ornaments into piles based on the room they would be designated too, I quickly realized that I would be short on filling all the green space on the tree. I successfully placed all of the ornaments, but it needed more….Light bulbs went on- Wedding decorations. I snuck back into my stash and found this amazing beaded garland.
I only had small pieces of it so I strategically placed them through the green space on the tree. I also had picked up some single Poinsettias last year
As you may have gathered I added some funky, glistening, mesh ribbon as well…it really added a lot to the tree. The placement of red was crucial to the success of my vision for this tree. I might still get some more plain red ornaments to add to the tree. I definitely need more for my next project (but you’ll have to come back to see that one). So here is our tree with a Little wider lens
As I was putting the final touches on the tree, I caught Diesel with a twinkle in his eye gazing into the tree.