Happy Holidays! I know it might be a bit controversial to lead with a holiday greeting on December 29th. Especially this year. With Christmas falling on a Tuesday it seemed that most of the world went back to business as normal on Wednesday, including my husband and even Kyle, who started a three-day baseball mini-camp on Wednesday evening.
I know may people who have already undecorated their homes (which I suppose I understand if you first decked the halls back on November 1st – or even earlier than that). And if you are remotely active on social media you’ve probably seen the debates about when is the ‘right” time to put away the Christmas decorations.
I have to admit, the idea that people have already moved on from the holidays makes me a bit sad. I don’t know about you, but Christmas is still going strong at my house. My nephew is with us for a few more days and we are in the midst of Christmas vacation. In fact, my kids are home for another full week. And I am not complaining about that. I’m definitely looking forward to a little more downtime next week. Plus, we still have quite a few items on our Holiday Bucket List that we need to check off.
Things like binge-watching cheese Christmas movies, which Kelly and I finally got to this week, visiting the Christmas lights display, which we plan to do tonight and going ice-skating are still on our agenda. We’ve saved these things for post-holiday for a couple of reasons. First, there simply wasn’t time to squeeze all our holiday must-do’s into the three weeks leading up to Christmas. But also, saving some of these special events for the days after Christmas helps keep the magic of the season alive just a little bit longer and delays the very real post-Christmas let-down for a few more days.
Anyway, as another month draws to a close let’s take a peek about what we’ve been up to in December:
The month started with a series of Christmas concerts. Kevin and his electric guitar made a guest appearance with the high school chamber orchestra to play Trans Siberian Orchestra’s Christmas Eve. Kyle had his first public performance on the upright bass. And Kelly played flute with the seventh grade band.
Pete and Izzy arrived for a bit of, albeit mellow, Christmas fun. We always enjoy having these little visitors in our home. They make the month of December so much fun.
We finally found time to decorate the tree, a process that only took about four days, but I must say it looks beautiful. Definitely not blog-worthy, which is ironic because I am posting it on this blog. Our tree isn’t themed, or color-coordinated, or in ay way fancy or elaborate or pinnable. But it is ours. It is adorned with a mishmash of favorite ornaments – hand made creations of the kids, various photo ornaments from Christmas’ past, family “heirlooms” handed down from our parents and collected over the years and mementos from family vacations. And we love it. And wouldn’t have it any other way.
I snuck in some much-needed quick self-care . . .
Quite a few runs – and I can I just say how much I am loving this mild weather!
And we even snuck in a last-minute trip to Kraynak’s.
My Dad came to visit for Kevin’s birthday and stayed through Christmas. It was so nice to have him here with us for ten whole days! I’m dreaming about the day when he and my brother move closer.
And speaking of Kevin’s birthday – yup, he turned 16! I can’t believe I am now the parent of the a sixteen year old. For some reason, that just sounds/seems so much older than 15. Sigh.
We spent the morning at the DMV and finally emerged wth his permit in hand. He’s been practicing a lot and is actually doing great on the road.
On the night of his birthday he played guitar for pep band, and so we kicked off Christmas break with a nice family party.
And I made not one, but two guitar cakes this week.
My brother and nephew arrived in town and it finally felt like Christmas! The kids excitedly raced through their annual elf Scavenger Hunt and uncovered these adorable snow people. We baked cookies and play games (no photo of that though).
We spent Christmas Eve with my in-laws and the kids received some great gifts:
And we attended a neighborhood party where the boys anxiously awaited a visit from Santa.
Then, in a very controversial move, we bid farewell to the elves. Years ago Santa left a note that it was okay to hug our elves good bye on Christmas Eve because he would take them home with him in the sleigh so they didn’t need their magic that night.
Finally, it was Christmas morning.
And my brother’s birthday too!
I’ll leave you with what would have been my Christmas card if I had my act together enough to send them. This was the first time in 16 years that I did not send a Christmas card. I was a little bit worried. But you know what, the world kept spinning, Christmas came and went, and all was okay. In fact, as Christmas morn dawned many of my friends posted their “cards” online and admitted they too were skipping the annual ritual this year. Maybe we are just breaking in a new tradition!
Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!