For the first time in several years, and only about the second in both my kids’ lifetime, we stayed home over the Christmas/New Year break this year. As the last night of our break comes to a close, I’m enjoying refelecting on the last two weeks at HOME. I sat down for a little bit several times during the break with great plans to blog about all we were doing. But we were too busy having family fun to get much blogging done. So here I am on January 2, 2016, sharing with you a few of my favorite moments of the last two weeks of 2015.
Hubs hung our mantle just before Christmas. It came to us from his dad. It was the mantle in the home he built that Hubs grew up in but it was originally a bridge tie from the dam in front of their house. That’s a mouthful, I know, long story short it’s been reclaimed twice and is loving it’s third life in our new home.
The window resting on the mantle was also reclaimed from Hubs’ grandmother’s house. The above is what it looks like now after taking down the Christmas décor.
By the way, this is usually what our table looks like. There’s always some kind of project going on we just push to the side to make room for food. And by project I really just mean several large piles of homeless things.
This little scene just made me happy as I baked around it through the holidays. Especially that little old Santa. How cute is he?!
Getting messy with sugar cookies. I baked A LOT before the break and decorated my share of pretty ones, but the boys’ cookies were just more fun.
Outside of Santa’s village just before telling the big guy what we wanted for Christmas. This is one our favorite traditions. Afterward we drove through the park to look at the big lights on display. Then we ate at our favorite Chinese buffet. Because, you know, that’s what you do two days before Christmas, right?!?
On Christmas morning we filled two hats each with our four names and drew a name out of each. The first was the person who got to choose a gift from under the tree, the second was the person who’s name would be on the gift and would get to unwrap it. This made for an exciting and SLOW gift unwrapping experience. The mess on the floor at the end of the morning was glorious! I know there’s a current trend against over-giving, but I’ve found myself saying “Thanks but no thanks” to that. I say “No” to my kids all. year. long. Christmas and birthdays are a time I get to spoil them. And I do! (As much as Hubs will let me.)
After opening all our family gifts and munching on breakfast, we packed up and went to Hubs’ grandparents for Christmas at the Farm. Here we are with his extended family. From now on if there’s a tractor and a silo in our pictures from Christmas then I think we’re doing it right.
This is one of the handmade gifts we gave this year. Hubs read in the newspaper last year about a photographer who took pictures of different deer stands. The differences between them, in a structure as simple as a deer stand, were architecturally beautiful. So we attempted to do our own version in frame for his parents. Hunting is a big part of his family. His dad has built countless stands, each one is unique in it’s own right, and each of them hold priceless memories.
Nine of the twelve stands I took pictures of that made it into the frame.
We spent plenty of time outside over the break too. Sledding – someone I know cheats, I won’t say who but he’s bigger than me – and skating. I choose to skate in my boots long enough to take pictures and then return to somewhere warm with coffee.
We rang in the new year with new neighbors and I have since been cleaning up Christmas and getting our home refreshed and ready for yet another new season. For the second year in a row, I didn’t make any resolutions. The last 18 months, even with it’s lows, has been mostly trending up. I kind of like the people and the stuff my life is made of and where it’s headed. I don’t really want that to change.
Actually, there was one change. On the very first day of the year, I became a GREAT Aunt! That’s right, at the ripe old age of 33 I am a great aunt. Brittany made me an aunt at age 7, so it’s not too surprising, I suppose. I couldn’t help but shed a little tear at the awe and wonder of another beautiful baby girl joining our family as we celebrated the passing of a tough year and the hopes for our future. 2016, I have a feeling, will be full of more GREAT things.
Merry and Bright, With Love and Light,