I can’t believe Thanksgiving was a week ago. And now it’s over and it’s December 2. Time has been going by so quickly in the past year that I’ve honestly believed that I’m a year or two older than I really am. It’s true. Just yesterday I told Jaana someone was the same age as I am - 38 or 39 - and she said, “Mommy, you’re 37!” And I had to stop and think about how old Greg was to figure out how old I was. She was right. I’m just 37. All that to say, it feels like two years have passed in the last 12 months.
But age and wrinkles be darned, there are many things to be thankful for this week, so let’s get to it!
- New Christmas Photo Card Options. I love doing Christmas photo cards because they’re easy and far away family and friends can see how much the kid(s) have grown. (I didn’t do any Christmas cards last year because Paxton was born in December and I was awee bit preoccupied to bother with seasonal greetings.) But this year we got some great family photos, and I found a new online source for cute cards -- Pear Tree Greetings -- and loved it! On most of the cards you can select colors, fonts and create your own messages. And I even found a card that’s a self-mailing postcard for even more conveniency. (And if that’s not a word, I just made it up.)
- Routines. I can’t hide it or deny it. I love routines. I love knowing what’s going to happen each day, and in which order. I don’t like having too many things going on in any given day or week. While it’s fun to have breaks from the routine (e.g., Thanksgiving in Atlanta), I always look forward to coming home to settle back into my hermit-like lifestyle. We got home Sunday, and Monday was filled with normal, routine-like things like laundry. It’s been a glorious week (although there’s been some activity or another I’ve had to physically go to every day, so I’m a little put out about that.) I kid. (Or do I?)
- Apple Cup. The annual football game between the two arch-enemies, Washington State University (go Cougs!) and the ridiculously overrated University of Washington (boooo). It’s the one game a year where anything is possible, and records for the season get thrown out the window. Anything. Is. Possible. The game is this Saturday, and Facebook has been all-abuzz with friendly (and not-so-friendly) banter. My brother has become a turncoat since I graduated from WSU (go Cougs!) and roots wholeheartedly for the Huskies (boooo). However, he did not attend there, nor anyone in my family. So his new nickname is now Jack-Husky. And now it seems like my brother-in-law is getting in on the Facebook action. To which I say, “Six and six, Bulldogs? Which BCS game is that again?” Exactly.
Some famous Cougars, you ask? Edward R. Murrow (broadcaster), Paul Allen (Microsoft co-founder), Drew
Bledsoe (NFL football player), John Fabian (astronaut), Gary Larson (The Far Side cartoonist), Sherman Alexie
(author and film director)...just to name a few. Oh, and Monica Steely née Salmela (blog writer extraordinaire).
- One Year Birthdays. I’ll write more on this next week, because Paxton turns 1 on the 10th. But I’m loving watching my little bud get so big! He’s eats mostly table food now, and his favorite breakfast is strawberries and pancakes. He throws his sippy cup on the floor now and says, “uh oh.” He stands without holding onto anything, then realizes what he’s doing it and squats down. He asks to go night-night and for his ba-ba. He chases around his soccer ball and basketball all the live-long day. I always miss infancy, yet at the same time absolutely love whatever stage my kids are in. We’re having the most fun right now, and I’m excited for his big day to come.
- The Hap-Happiest Season of All. It’s the most wonderful time of the year. Effective yesterday, Jaana has awoke with a start, eager to open the little door on the advent calendar. Our stockings are hung over the door to the screened-in porch with care. Our (fake) tree is still in storage, but coming out soon to sit on the screened-in porch where we have room for it and conveniently where Paxton can’t attack it. Our nativity is in the middle of the coffee table, and one of the wise men’s feet is broken off. Santa and his elf helper have left a couple messages for Jaana on the chalkboard where the snowman’s hat is missing. We may not have our own place or room for all our Christmas stuff, but fah-who for-aze, welcome Christmas, come this way!
- Amazon.com Wish Lists. I learned about these from a friend’s blog, and why haven’t I done this before? I’ve created two wish lists - one for Jaana (Christmas gifts) and one for Paxton (Christmas and birthday). I can email the link to family and they can select what to buy, order directly and have it shipped to me. Seriously easy for west-coast Christmas shopping!
- Hank. Hank is a trainer at the gym, and while I haven’t hired him, he always is giving me free pointers on things I can do to break whatever current plateau I’ve reached. And they work! Now lately, every time I see him he calls me The Incredible Shrinking Woman. And you just can’t put a price on that kind of compliment, people. You just can’t.
- Tea Coffee for Two. Greg and I have been married for almost eight years. Only in the last week have I had the privilege -- rather, the JOY -- of making coffee for the both of us. He’s now hooked on good brew, and is recognizing the difference between quality and cheap coffee. Now all the things on my original list of what I wanted in a husband are crossed off. Jesus, you can come now.
- School Times. Not sure the reasoning behind it, but I don’t question it. Jaana’s school day begins at 9:am and ends at 3:30 pm. I love it. It’s perfect for us. With the baby, it’s uber-convenient for both his morning and afternoon nap times. And let’s be honest, not having to wake up early to leave the house by 7:45 is simply a treat. Our mornings aren’t rushed. When Jaana gets to high school in eight years, it will be a rude awakening. But maybe I’ll be an early riser again by then. Or not.
- Winter. It’s finally cold. Scarves and hats and gloves have been unearthed. There’s been a small, little snow flurry this week, and the car has to be warmed up before we leave in the mornings. I’m in heaven.
“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is
God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
- 1 Thess 5:18