Friday, December 19, 2014

Snapshot #17: Tis the Season

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?

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Isaiah 45:3

I've run across this verse twice in the last 48 hours so I'm sharing it in hopes it will bless you like it did me.

I will give you the treasures of darkness, riches stored in secret places, so that you m ay know that I am the Lord, the God of Israel, who summons you by name. Isaiah 45:3


Tuesday, December 16, 2014

On the Mend

The flu crisis of December 2014 is over.

Knock on wood.

Brian and Camden both went back to school today, and since Rory and I have yet to show any sign of the flu, I'm going to just assume we're past the danger zone.

Knock on wood.

While Brian was doing this . . .

and Camden was doing this . . .

Rory was doing this.

And this.

And this.

And this.

While I nursed 2 patients (have I ever mentioned that I am about the least compassionate person ever?), Rory's energy was through the roof. It was an interesting 4 days to say the least. My sanity was saved by the 8 hours of play practice on Friday/Saturday because there were plenty of high school girls and college boys (she is so smitten before she even really knows what smitten means) to entertain her.

Camden, who is always my sweet kid when sick, had a tough time with the strep throat swab and flu nose swab. The solitary tear that rolled down his cheek broke my heart. Not enough that I got any closer to his germs than rubbing his back . . . from an arm's length away, but it was sad.

I'm working from home today, in the office tomorrow, and then I'm done until January 5. Brian and the kids finish up Friday, and we leave town Monday. There is ALOT happening between now and then, but I'm determined to somehow get this house back under control, do some baking, and make some holiday memories before the month is over.

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Tis the Season

When I heard on the news this week that this year's flu shot had missed the mark, I didn't think it was going to be that big of a deal.

As of this afternoon, however, Brian has a confirmed case of the flu, and I picked Camden up from school today with a fever. Hurray for us!

Let me just go ahead and apologize to everyone our family has come in contact with over the past 48 hours. The doctor was proactive by calling in a prescription for Tamiflu for me, and I have already taken the first dose. (Did not know Tamiflu was so expensive!)

We've quarantined both boys upstairs, and Rory and I are disinfecting and washing our hands like it's our job.

Here's hoping for a Christmas miracle. Two miracles actually: that Rory and I don't get sick and that Brian and Camden are well enough to participate in the Christmas play Sunday.


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Good Reads, Part 2

I've had several friends tag me to list my top 10 books. I thought this list was going to be hard. And I thought there would be a lot more fiction on here, but I decided to just quickly jot down what came to mind and this is the result.

my very first John Grisham book - I tore through these in college

my very first historical fiction. I read it multiple times throughout high school and college.

And here are a few blog posts I've read recently that stuck with me.

A post by LosWhit (I will not type out the actual title of blogpost)