Monday, December 31, 2018

New Year's Eve

As we wrapped up 2018, teen girls requested shopping and baking whereas the boys were loud; bouncing from one activity to another. Young adults hung close to home until night fell; knowing we prefer to be in bed by nine thirty at the latest, no matter the holiday.

The baby has been ill so we have seen little of him or his parents this week. An ear infection was diagnosed today and we pray treatment takes hold prior to their flight home.

Oldest daughters requested massages to cope with headaches and found instant relief. If it weren't for the impact I fear it would have on my physical health, I would invest in massage therapy school as I believe in healing touch. I instead make the most of the trust others place in me when they need relaxation.

New year's resolutions have been loosely drawn; intentional dates with my husband, bedtime stories returning for Kate and Ty and daily stretching in hopes of reducing nightly muscle aches are sketched into my planner. Lofty goals of reigning in my diet and adding workouts are also on the agenda but relationships take first priority. A photography course starts next week for both personal and professional development as I am eager to grow and be stretched out of my comfort zone.

We won't wait on any balls to drop as 2019 will arrive whether we are watching or not. Sleep takes priority after such a full day; as it does every year.

Sunday, December 30, 2018

Christmas Week

Erin purchased Ada a new drinking fountain for Christmas. At first it spooked both cats but they quickly fell in love with their fresh filtered water. The line at the drinking fountain occurs frequently and whereas I rolled my eyes upon the initial presentation of this little gizmo, the cats waiting turns amuses me.

The day after Christmas, both Kate and Ty had physicals. Kate's tumor required X-rays to monitor it's growth. It has grown minimally since August and still requires no additional testing. As a side note, she is five foot three and a half inches tall. This delights her. Lauren and I are both five feet four inches and she has her heart set on passing us soon. After visiting the pediatrician's office, the hospital for xrays and then for the perfect trifecta, the grocery store, Kate woke with pink eye 24 hours later. Of course she did.
I felt under the weather off and on all week. I found myself requiring naps and able to eat very little. In fact, I lost five pounds for Christmas and am fairly certain that should be somewhat illegal. I clearly did not fully enjoy all the sweet treats available. As result of the fatigue, the Christmas decorations survived until Friday the 28th. This is a twenty year record in my house. Ty was heartbroken when I went to toss his gingerbread house into the garbage so Greg made him an offer he couldn't refuse. All of them aimed for the gumdrop on top with the BB gun. Kate was our champion.

Our days have been leisurely and full of walks, naps and family time together. It has been restful; the recharge needed in order to start 2019 strong.

Kate has a friend who moved to Indy two summers ago spending a few days with us and I went to get Benjamin today.

The energy in the house has made a 180 degree turn. There is noise, a locker room type odor and a lot of hugs as he keeps telling us he loves us. We have missed him. 

Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Christmas Day

I recently read a devotion based on a single line of scripture in the much larger chapter of Luke. Paraphrased; Mary held these things close to her heart. As Mary was called to Bethlehem to give birth to our Savior, she had provisions to prepare, a long and painful journey ahead and in the mix of all that, she was called by God despite the scorn of those who could not yet see her calling. The devotion went on to discuss all the ways as mothers we prepare for Christmas each year and how we may not being called all the way to Bethlehem but we are in fact going to make one more trip to the grocery store. Again. The hustle and bustle of the season can be life breathing or life sucking and the reality is, the day we acknowledge Jesus' birth arrives either way. This year, the baking wasn't knocked off the to-do list so neighbors weren't gifted with sweet treats like that have every year prior. And you know what? No one came demanding.

Stockings were stuffed with treasures I located over the course of the year and each child was gifted with one package. Santa updated some board games and grandparents were each acknowledged with a simple offering. However, Erin went a little crazy buying gifts for her cat. This is our celebration as I attempt to balance the reason for the season with childhood wonder. But in truth, I have my eye set on a mountain cabin getaway next year with uncomplicated meals and less commercialism. Whereas we gather and laugh and enjoy one another, we also wear out the woman who spends weeks preparing. In the end, her people would be just as happy with pizza delivery and perhaps more so if it means she gets to join in the relaxing portion of the day together.

A Christmas morning walk for Greg and I was followed by a doorframe repair because tomorrow is large trash pick up and we weren't sure how involved this repair would turn out to be; practical outweighing festivities. The blessing in this? Christmas decorations remained safely intact while I was distracted. My twenty year tradition of wiping away all the madness by noon Christmas Day has been broken.

Our grandson fell ill over night, Santa missing the memo on a healthy boy for celebrating. And his exhausted parents are worried. Every mother has rocked her child and prayed and I wonder how differently Mary felt toward Jesus, knowing he was the son of God. Is it reasonable to then believe he would be protected from stomach bugs?

Christmas Eve

Christmas Eve was my day to have Lauren, Taylor and Austin so we had breakfast followed by our traditional sibling gift exchange. The kids enjoy drawing names to see who they get to give a present to each year and this year was no exception.

Taylor challenged Greg to a turkey cook-off knowing our kids prefer roasted turkey to Greg's smoked despite how hard I worked to raise them well. Taylor won bragging rights at the end of the day even though several admitted to being torn and a boisterous chant to call my rosemary rolls the ultimate winner.

When the kids bring a new friend around the entire family, they either fit in or run scared. I think Cody fit in.....

Once he was asleep, I recalled we hadn't read Twas the Night Before Christmas and felt rather guilty. He isn't discussing the man in red nor is he interested in Christmas movies this year. I know in my gut the magic is gone but haven't yet had the heart to ask him what he thinks. Neither of us is quite ready to finalize his suspicions.

But he is proud of the pizzelles he made and also selected his favorite peppermint bark to accompany one on Santa's treat plate.