Better late then not at all!
I started this blog as a journal of Our Journey Through LIFE so why wouldn’t LIFE be the reason I don’t blog like I use too.
It was CRAZY!
It was LOUD!
But it is always GRAND with these kiddo’s!
Not once, but twice I got to go see Frozen! I highly recommend it. And don’t be surprised if on the way home all you hear is…”Let it go, let it go. Can’t hold you back anymore. Let it go, let it go!”
I even had some help in bringing up the “GRAND” tree’s. (Though I never did get them up or decorated…boohoo!)
I wasn’t as prepared for the week of Christmas as I had hoped. I wish I could say it had nothing to do with tumors, or catching a little bug, or dealing with grief, but it really did. I had hoped this year would be different but that wasn’t happening. However, what did happen was how it was handled! My kids really stepped up and created some new traditions or helped pull off the old ones. I learned I didn’t need to do it all myself anymore. I can depend on my family to come to the plate and dish up some great stuff. All I had to do was…are you ready for this…here it comes…”Let it Go! Let it Go!
One thing I could never really “let go” of though is setting my table. If nothing else is done, this had to be! I really love how it came out this year. I used the same candy canes as last year just had to redo some of them. This year I unpacked and used my moms crystal and my MIL silverware. I paired my old Target dishes with my new Rachel Ray Hoot’s collection. Like I needed more dishes! Actually all I did was get the salad plates to add to what I already had. Maybe more will be added, or not, but I love that all 4 set’s of Christmas dishes can now be mixed and matched together. Win, Win!
I did however “Let it Go!” when it came to decorating all those Christmas tree’s. Usually I will decorate 13 tree’s: the main family tree, an angel tree, a collection of Hummel’s on a tree, one for each of my children, and seven “Grand’s”. Can you tell I love Christmas tree’s! With all the ornaments I have collected for almost 40 years now, I would need one really BIG tree for them all to fit. When I inherited my mom’s and MIL’s back in 2002, I decided to divide it up and bought 3 alpine fake trees for my kids, leaving the main tree for parents and grandparents. Then the “Grand’s” began to arrive and those three were turned into their families until their families grew but the size of the tree didn’t. So more alpine trees were bought. So there is the story of why I have so many tree’s. Actually I would love to find more of what I have but will have to keep my eyes open at garage sales since I haven’t seen them in years. I bought some a few years back and when we opened the box, they looked nothing like what I had but make them work. So I will keep looking.
But this year, I didn’t get them all up, or even all decorated. The Angel Tree was the only completed tree and it received a new Angel this year…(sorry, didn’t take any pictures of it this year)
I love this picture of my Uncle Joe when he was 2 years old. That was 1916! Yes he almost made it to 100. Dang I miss that man already! A year of first without him to come.
My main family tree did not get any ornaments but it still looked pretty…
The box sat next to the tree until Christmas Eve.
And I never even unpacked all the Hummel's. Nor did I get my greenery up on ledges. Nor did the Nutcrackers see the holidays. It was to warm for the snowmen to come out, LOL! And the Santa’s were just too busy to make the party. I did miss them but not the work it takes to get it all out. Maybe next year?
The outside looked nice and I loved how my tree looked from the outside looking in.
Remember back at Thanksgiving I was told of how the schedule had changed. Well, that part of me that was thinking I might get surprised, was right! Unfortunately when the cat came out of the bag, I came out scratching! Be it everything I described earlier, but when I was asked to change the schedule for opening gifts, I refused to budge and shut the door. Now in my defense, I knew what I had in the way of gifts and what I had left to do, but adding another family I hadn’t completed shopping for threw a wrench in my pot. I know my son jumped through some hoops to be here and I was tickled pink for the surprise. However, I had a vision…and it was one of a disaster!
You see, I had nothing wrapped yet, and I mean nothing! Plus some of their stuff hadn’t arrived, but wasn’t worried knowing they wouldn’t be here till New Years.But now they were coming Christmas Eve! I hadn’t planned a Christmas Eve dinner this year, just church and our light tour. So after I calmed down, I was taken shopping to get these last minute gifts. While the man wrapped I tried to make heads and tales of what I had. By midnight we were done but I kept having that feeling I’s missing something. I double checked, counted, checked again and it was all there, so why did this feeling hover over me?
Christmas Eve began with a trip to the grocery store…not at all how I thought it would be, but roll with it right!
One thing I am not comfortable with is not being ready for an occasion and that feeling kept bugging me! I kept telling myself to “Let it GO!” but it was stronger then I was. Then it happened….
Everything was going great…the first gifts were a hit! Round two and three went off without a hitch. Round four however turned into a cry fest. Somehow a little girl didn’t have a 4th gift! Nor did a little boy. The older two understood what was going on and tried really hard to help, but how do you settle a 2 and 3 year olds disappointment…you get the gifts I had put back for Christmas Day so they would have something to open when the adults exchanged gifts. Problem solved. Tears dried. Fun continued on.
Until dinner that is! Things were going rather well. I hardly had to do anything since they all pitched in. But just before it was time to eat I noticed I didn’t have enough chairs around the table. I completely forgot to bring up the other 4 chairs from the guest house. So while they were all doing the dinner stuff, I went out to try and get them. Well, it was harder to do then I had thought it would be. This happens when I least expect it. Something I use to do with no problem, is now harder to manage. I have no strength in my arms anymore but have learned how to leverage things to accomplish some task. By the time I managed to get two of the four chairs up to the house, they were all sitting down eating. I couldn’t believe they had no idea where I was, what I was doing, but were making do with what seating they had. I apologized for my shortness but sometimes they just don’t know how hard it is to do certain things now. Maybe if I would tell them. Maybe if I would ask for help. Maybe I just need to “Let it GO!” more.
And that’s just what I did!
After dinner we all got ready for church. I loved how we filled a whole row.
I love that we got this one picture but sad we didn’t get their parents too. Be it the crazy’s, other’s waiting to do the same thing we were doing, but my kids didn’t jump in and no one offered to take it for us, so “Let it GO!”
A tradition after church is a drive around looking at lights on the way home. We start at the street that does The Night Before Christmas where 2 of the little's got to see the big guy…
They walked along with us and read the story with excitement.
On Candy Cane Lane, this little girl wanted us to sing to her…
So we did! I love spending time at this friend house every Christmas Eve and this year I had most my family with me. One third had to head back home by this point and though they were missed for all the festivities, I did feel blessed they were here for the most important parts.
Our Journey Through LIFE had a very Christmas and hope you all did too!