Kids are at school attending the school party (God bless their teachers). Christmas cards are finally addressed and ready to go in the mail. Brian finishes up at noon today. Presents are bought; baked goods have been made (and mostly sent out the door for parties). All photoshoots are finished and delivered. Plans are made tonight to surprise the kids with a Christmas light tour and a harp concert from "our Claire!!" as they put it.
What I'm saying is that it finally feels like things can slow down, and we can start soaking in the experience of celebrating Christ's birth. Even if we are hopelessly behind with our Advent reading.
Outside my window: Oh, so gray. I think the lack of sunshine in the past month has been contributing to my lower-than-usual mood.
I am thinking: about all the people in my life going through tough times. And feeling so convicted about the day-to-day complaining I do. I double dog dare you to watch this or this and not feel inspired as well as slightly ashamed. "I beg of the world. Stop complaining. Find ways to be happy. Seriously. Dig deep. Even in my worst times, I still try. No matter how hard.” - from Annie Goodman, a 33-year old Fox News producer who died this week of breast cancer.
I am thankful for: the distraction my job provides in the midst of a time that could feel quite depressing if I was still staying at home every day. I mention this so often, but the opportunity came into my life at such a perfect time - God knew how much I was going to need this job.
I am wondering: what 2015 is going to look like.
Future plans I'm looking forward to: Well, our trip to Illinois next week, of course!
Kid funnies: Rory is loving singing Christmas carols this year. It's well-documented she is slightly (or not-so-slightly) musically challenged so you can imagine that when I say she's doing the Pentatonix version of Christmas carols they are practically unrecognizable. ;)
I am reading: Oh, my reading has slowed down so much now that I'm working. I'm hoping to do some reading over the break although my trip to the library last night was very unfruitful. I would really like to read Love and Respect by Emerson Eggrichs for self-improvement and The Rosie Project by Graeme Simsion for fun.
In the kitchen: Oh, boy, life has been so busy we're scrapping bottom. Jumping right back on the cooking, healthier lifestyle as soon as Christmas break is over. You know, just like the rest of America.
On my frequent play-list: Needtobreathe Holiday station and Pentatonix Holiday - both found on Pandora. Also, the Serial podcast, which also explains why there's been not as much reading. I've saved the last 4 episodes to binge-listen to on our trip next week.
Rest-of-the-day plans: Lunch at Outback with Brian and his fellow teachers, tour of Christmas lights, going to see our friend play the harp, catching up on our Advent book with the kids (we are about 6 days behind!).
And because I can't post without pictures (but have nothing current to share), here is an outtake from our Christmas card photoshoot. Could they be any more awkward? It might be the exact reason I went home and booked a photographer on this very day.
There comes a day when you should stop trying to take official photographs of your children. That day has arrived.
And how about one more from an official photo shoot on that same day - because I need to feel better about myself. Aren't they sweet?