Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Feast or Famine

Oh.  The merriment.  This time of year there never seems to be any middle ground.  There's either too much of something, or not nearly enough.  There's too much food, too many activities, too many gifts to buy & wrap, too many decorations, & too little time, too little money, too little sleep.  It's 80 degrees & muggy, or it's 30 degrees & you're smearing yourself with Aquaphor.  There's too much college football, & then, poof! - - no more football for months.  And in my world, it's everyone's birthday, all in the same week.

A quick scroll through the photos on my iPhone tells me I am way, way behind in blogging the holiday happenings.  I realize I never mentioned Thanksgiving, & I should since it's been quite a year for my family & we have ample reasons to give thanks.

Exhibits A & B:

Exhibit C:

As my five loyal readers know, my parents sold their house this year & moved into a new one in early November.  In fact, the above photos of the kids were taken the day we all went to say a final farewell to the old home.  So, this year's Thanksgiving was spent in the new house, with the two new babies.  It's amazing what God can do in a year.  Last Thanksgiving, Reagan was not yet two & urinating wherever she pleased, I was newly pregnant, nauseated all the time, & driving a Honda Civic, Jessica was very un-pregnant, & my parents were constantly having the same conversation, Should we sell the house?  Should we build?  We have so much stuff!         

This Thanksgiving morning, my parents awoke in a new home full of considerably less junk, with a new granddaughter under their roof & a potty trained Reagan, her brother, & their Toyota Highlander-driving mother & Toyota Highlander-buying father on the way.  What can I say; driving my Highlander & having a daughter who always urinates in the toilet make me extremely happy.  It's the little things.   

I snapped this of Reagan on the ride to Nana & Papa's new house:

Henry & I waiting to eat.  I'm trying to impress upon him that for him to eat, I have to eat.

The table awaits:

The bird:

Happy Henry:

Jessica took this one of my Papaw, post-eating.  Wouldn't the world be a more wonderful place if all men wore a sweater vest & a fedora to dinner?

Of course, I wanted some pics of me & the kids.  So you can guess how that went.

And, to sum up Thanksgiving:

The Saturday after Thanksgiving, we all went in search of Precious Memories Christmas Tree Farm where, according my mother's online research, a live Christmas tree that is a good choice for people with allergies could be found.  I forget the name of the particular tree, but we easily located one once we arrived at the idyllic tree farm.  Naturally we took three or four wrong turns & left some ruts in strangers' yards before finding the tree farm.  

I realize the tree hunting may not seem all that interesting, but I think it's blog-worthy since we did it with two nursing infants in tow.  There's really nothing that's not interesting when done with two nursing infants in tow.

Last Thursday night, I was all nestled in for the cold, wet weekend when I heard the familiar ping of a text message.  Reagan & I were invited to attend The Guardians of Christmas at the Civic Center Friday morning.  Do you remember much about last Friday morning?  It was not warm, nor was it dry.  The Lord was practically shouting from Heaven, Stay home in your pajamas & drink coffee!  I stamped down my inner Scrooge & showered & dressed & bundled up the kids & we actually made it on time.  

A few attempts at pics after the show:

And lunch at The Creamery:

These are courtesy of Reagan:

Last night I took Reagan to the church for the kids' Christmas party.  In the short time my parents have lived in their new house, Reagan has grown accustomed to having the playground that's nearby all to herself, which helps to explain the look on her face in the second pic.  She can't fathom why someone is trailing her up the slide ladder. 

After a short lecture on sharing, we decorated cookies . . . 

. . . & waited until Santa had vacated his perch to take a picture with sweet Ava, because Reagan wasn't going anywhere near Santa.

Amid all the above merriment, here's what I've been up to . . . I'll buy pretty much anything that's labeled 'salted caramel.'  Combine that phrase with the word 'chunk,' & my resolve crumbles as quickly as these chewy cookies in my coffee stained hand.

I never buy Oreos, because if I do, I eat them.  Rapidly.  I broke my rule & bought these for Trey, who celebrated his 35th birthday on the 6th, because he loves to sit in his recliner at night & rock & eat junk food.  Plus, they're Winter Oreos!  They're special!  And by special I mean that the unhealthy white creamy filling has been dyed red, making it even more unhealthy.  

I'd like to teach Reagan that Christmas is about more than going into debt (or a diabetic coma), but right now I feel like a failure on both counts.  Our house is overrun with toys & sugary desserts (which I buy to help me cope with a house overrun with toys).  I now totally understand why my parents always made the yearly Christmas threat: "This year, we shouldn't buy any gifts; we should all go serve food at a shelter."  

What I haven't even mentioned is that on December 6th, not only did Trey turn 35, but Henry was 6 months old.  His photo shoot is on hold until the red, dry weather/drool/pacifier rash he's sporting clears up some.  This Friday, my dad & Reagan will celebrate birthdays.  Miss Reagan will be 3 years old.  Sigh.  Pictures & emotional sputtering are forthcoming.

In closing, I'd like to congratulate the Auburn Tigers on their SEC Championship & spot in the title game.  This is the stuff of Christmas dreams; the SEC still has a shot at the national title, but there's zero chance of Bama repeating.  I continue to suspect that Saban will leave Bama & take the head coaching job at Texas, which will be open when Mac Brown steps down.  I may be wrong, but this is a chain of events I wouldn't be at all surprised to see unfold, & if it happens, watching the Bama fans react will be all the Christmas I'll need, though it's possible nothing can top the conclusion of this year's Iron Bowl.  I mean, how fantastic was that?!?  College football is so much more than cheering for your team; it's about reveling in the immense glee you feel when those you despise fall on their face.  

This post (& my sanity) is brought to you by the longer naps Henry is taking of late, & Michael Buble's Christmas album, which accompanied me as I typed.  Get. It.   


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