I love Christmas. I repeat, I just LOVE Christmastime!
Even though it means coming out of a few very busy weeks, wherein I often felt I was not the mother and wife I wanted to be, just because of being so overwhelmed…
Even if it means caroling in flip-flops and short-sleeves, which we did on Sunday night. Even if the doors and windows in my house have been open because it’s so warm, as I did a couple days this week. It does feel really really funny to have my house all decorated up and be able to go outside barefooted at the same time. Coming from the north, that is just not how it works!
But I am VERY excited about going north today and HOPING for a huge snowstorm to come while I’m there! After I’m there, not while we’re driving! So excited about a road trip with a dear friend, all our three kids in the backseat! Wish us luck!
There have been a few happy happening around this joint lately, and I wanted to document those before heading into the Christmas season… So this is backtracking a few weeks, but it’s as happy now in remembering it as it was then while it was happening!
My sister Jana and I share birthdays. She was born on my 2nd birthday, and even though we didn’t like the whole sharing-a-cake-and-one-party-for-two-people deal while we were little, we just love sharing a special day together now! In fact, it feels like we can’t even have a birthday if we’re not together!
This year I was talking to her a few days before our birthdays, just lamenting the fact that we couldn’t be together this year. Moaning and groaning to be sure, and she was pretending to moan and groan along with me. Pretending all right, because she had the most wonderful scheme up her sleeve!
And so it happened, that on the morning of my birthday, I had a lovely surprise – Ben stayed home from work that day just to be with me! Going out early in the morning to get donuts from Sugar & Spice (a local bakery, absolutely divine donuts), some chocolates, a sweet card, sparkling cider… all ready for me when I got up! And I thought my day was beyond happy just with that!
A little while later he had a mysterious errand to run in town. Again. “Wasn’t ready until today,” he said. Okay, fine! I love birthdays! And a surprise sounded like fun!
Well, what do you know, but my sister JANA walks in my bedroom a little while later – surprising the very socks off my feet!!! She had caught a ride down with some of Ben’s family, who were coming for Thanksgiving the next day! And they so graciously brought her down and let her spend the holiday with our family here!
So a day that started out just wonderful ended up even better than I dreamed of!
After a few warm greeting (hugs, “I-can’t-believe-you’re-here!!!” a hundred times, smiles that were from ear to ear) we toasted our birthday with some coffee (both of us were or are baristas, and a third sister is as well), we decided it would be a grand day to decorate the house for Christmas! So we gathered armloads of greens and set to work. What normally takes me all day, or several days, took only a fun afternoon!
A few pictures of our Christmas-y house. I love it. Feels ever so cozy and warm. I think I might keep it up through the winter.
the living room
This is one of my favorite things from the whole house: taper-candle-holders turned upside down to hold a pillar candle.
I went very simple with decor this year – just mostly greens and candles.
Zoe’s stocking. Don’t laugh, but what we gave her for Christmas was a pair of fluffy bunny slippers and a battery-operated toothbrush. Simple is good, folks! We had our little family Christmas last night, and she was just tickled to death.
Parts of the Navitity, as well as some carolers. Zoe’ joins them all together in a long, straight row, pulling them from their respective places and joining them on the coffee table/trunk. She’s obsessed with long, straight rows.
The front entrance.
Kitchen table. Simple simple, but I liked that this year. Spray-painted large pine cones silver, very lightly.
Zoe and me on my birthday. I’m now 27. Scared me to death before, but by George, it’s not that old!Now I think it’s a great age!
A week later, Ben and I spent a Saturday today – going to Jacksonville and watching the Nutcracker! I had never seen it live, and was so delighted to attend! Ben wasn’t too sure about all the “spandex” (his words, not mine!!), but other than that, it was a lovely time! Fun to dress all up, go out on a “real” date!
Dinner at the Cheesecake Factory afterward – a very particular favorite of mine.
Browsing through Barnes & Noble afterward. Ben gets stuck in the real estate aisle. Note the bag of cheesecake clutched very tightly against him. That is precious, precious cargo there!
Some biscotti-making the past little while. Made them as thank-you’s for some people.
And a last picture – my babe and I!
A merry merry Christmas to one and all!