(1) I've been in the worst funk lately. And I hate it. I hate it because it does nothing but heighten my feelings of being out of control, overwhelmed, sad and feeling super tired. I hate it because I'm not taking the time to really sit and enjoy ALL the good things going on around me. And I especially hate it because this is my most favorite time of year and it'll be over before I know it, and I would have wasted it by being in a terrible funk. So, I am trying as hard as I can to snap out of it,... PRONTO!
(2) After our Jacksonville trip, our pet sitter called and told us she was fostering a year-old beagle she found roaming around her place, but he really needed a permanent home, and she was sure we would love him and he would fit right in. Being the
(3) Our household has been hit HARD with illnesses in these last few weeks; sinus and ear infections, 24-hour stomach bugs, the flu, more 24-48-hour stomach bugs.... it's enough to drive anyone crazy! I think we're finally starting to see the light at the end of this germ-infested tunnel. And I, for one, could not be happier!
(4) The kids have loved their Advent Calendar this year. It's filled with all kinds of fun events, including reading Christmas books, watching Christmas movies, baking cookies, driving around to see the lights, Christmas crafts, and so on. One of their favorite activities was when we decorated our gingerbread house. I thought instead of buying one house, we could get a village and that would surely minimize the arguing that can be heard around our house ALL. THE. TIME! Anyway, they had a blast decorating their houses.
(5) We visited Alpine Village again this year and the kids LOVED every minute of it! I love this little family tradition of ours and I love that even though this was our sixth consecutive year of attending, we all still have a great time. This year we took my mom and my niece along with us, and based on their reaction, I'm pretty sure they'll be coming with us again in the future.
(6) Sam participated in his first ever Mother's Day Out Christmas program. Can you say ADORABLE? His class sang Jingle Bells and two other songs, and he did such a good job. He was so very proud of himself up on that stage. And don't even get me started on how proud we were of him. He is such a ham! A natural performer...
(7) We celebrated Christmas with my in-laws this past weekend and had a great time catching up, exchanging presents and "doing" some wonderful art projects. My MIL is an unbelievably talented artist. She and Isabella shared some creative quality time in her amazing art studio.
(8) We visited the Christmas Wonderland light display in Alton, IL. It had been years since the last time we went and I knew the kids would absolutely love it. You drive a mile and a half route decorated with millions of lights, hundreds of displays, and there's even a petting zoo. The one word I'd use to describe it is magical. The car was filled with little oohs and ahhs throughout the entire drive. Memphis has a similar concept called Starry Nights, and even though it's nice, in my opinion it pales in comparison to Alton's Christmas Wonderland. I'm so glad we were able to fit it into our visit.
(9) Our Christmas tree is finally up and decorated. Remember the funk I wrote about in (1), well the Christmas tree/decor situation did not help with it. When we finally brought the tree down from the attic, about half the lights weren't working. So after I had myself a good cry, I went out and bought us a new unlit tree and a bunch of strands of colorful lights, per Isabella's request. So even though our tree looks totally different than it ever has (yeah, I'm pretty much ALL about white/clear lights), I love it! It's fun and bright and colorful and happy!
(10) For those of you with children who believe in Santa, you must send them one of the Portable North Pole Santa messages. My kids went crazy when they first watched it. So cute! There's also an adult version you can send. So go check it out and send it to your favorite people!
Well, I think that about covers it . Once again, I am so sorry for my extended absence. But thanks for hanging in there with me.