It’s beginning to look a little like Christmas…

Today was free and decoration day, starting with the return of my adorable reindeer who spent the summer at the neighbors house, awaiting repairs.  He is all put together again and ready to jingle all the way!

How does he not have a name after all these years?! I’m always happy to see him each year.

Then, after pancakes and a shower, we headed out to get a tree.  Out past few tree outtings have been less than idylic (though I probably didn’t mention that on the blog), and Alan stillnisnt feeling well (did I mention his pneumonia?), so the kids and I headed down to our local Christmas tree parking lot.  We quickly found a perfect tree and I tied it into the new car platform.  So much easier than the roof of the car!

My camera sucks! It randomly doesn’t save pictures I take. It didn’t save the adorable picture of Lex standing by the tree, but it did save this silly rearview mirror picture. Dang technology! 😕

We spent the afternoon listening to Christmas music and decorating the house.

It was fun to see the kids getting out the Christmas stuff together and reminicing over the ornaments.

Haha. It looks like we have balloons on the tree!

This is a blurry picture, but a funny situation. Eve was putting out the nativity scene and Arlo came over to check it out, unbeknownst to her. She turned suddenly to say something to me and bumped right into Arlo’s nose. We all laughed. 😄

It’s important to hang candy canes ON the tree topper …

… and to take advantage of climbing on the furniture whenever possible!

Happy Holidays!

There are only four of us and we still can’t get a picture with everyone smiling. Goof balls. We tried to get Arlo in the picture too, but he wanted nothing to do with any of it.

The annual clearing off of the table. Don’t blink of you’ll miss it!

My grandparents crèche. I told Eve that baby Jesus doesn’t arrive until Christmas Eve, but she didn’t care.

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A little holiday cheer

Today I put aside all of the work thoughts and health issues and clutter (mental and literal), and went out for a day of holiday fun!

We started at the karate holiday party (and sale) where I purchased a few Christmas presents and the kids played games and are donuts! 

Look at Miss Eve back on the floor! They had a blast!

Then we headed over to the annual Gingerbread Festival where we looked at houses, lamented the old days when the crafts weren’t so babyish (or the kids weren’t so not babyish), and had a little lunch.

An ice blue castle, an Appalachian cabin (notice the snow shoes?), and 17 Cherry Tree Lane from Mary Poppins.

The GingerBand Stand with ice skaters out front, a Hobbit hole, and the three little pigs.

The Dothan Brook School subdivision.

Eve decided to decorate a cookie, but Lex’s face says it all about the babyish craft projects.

The kids weren’t interested in bidding on a house, so when we finished lunch we headed out.  We dropped Lex off at home, then Eve and I headed to a holiday craft fair where we found great little teacher fits and Eve made a cool coaster.  Then I dropped her at a birthday party and I went to the pharmacy and swung by The Paper Store for some impulse shopping! 

Home again for dinner and a movie.

Happy holidays! 

Allergy tests

In my never-ending mild medical saga, I went to see an allergist today.  I told her the whole long tale, then she did a skin test to see what I’m allergic too.  Turns out it’s pretty much the same old stuff: cats, dogs, and dust.  I’m not allergic to trees anymore, so that’s good. 

I got 42 pin pricks. Good times. (It’s hard to take a picture of your own back!)

She recommended an allergy med and prescribed a nasal mist (yuck!), but she didn’t have a clear explanation for my breathing problems.  She agreed that the treachea surgery is a good idea and thought maybe some speech/vocal therapy would be good too.  She said to check in with her in six months to see how the surfer affected things.  

While I was waiting I pulled up my blog post of Eve’s allergy testing.  That was a good day!! Her back is so much cuter than mine! (Here is her initial test.  She was so adorable!!)

So off we go to surgery on Tuesday.  I hope it works!!!

December

December is (almost) upon us.  Just a few more hours.  The kids are so excited fornadvent boxes each year, which is awesome because I really wanted to make a tradition that they looked forward to, but also stressful trying to come up with something new and interesting for those tiny boxes each year! 

This year I got the boxes up, but there is nothing exciting in them, just candy. In fact, Eve even saw me buying the candy! It’s hard to be sneaky when you have no free time! Sigh. I’m sure they will love the candy and the annual count-down, and who knows, maybe I’ll come up with a few fun surprises to add to the boxes along the way. 😊

Snow?

​It snowed last night. First snow of the season.  All the kids after Lego League were like a Peanuts show, running and laughing and throwing snowballs at each other.   The forecast said it would snow all night.  Lex and Eve went to bed with hopes for a snow day.  

This morning I broke out the snow boots, bundled up, and was eager to see Arlo in his first big snow.  But guess what?!  Nothing!!!  Well, barely nothing.  Just a small dusting.  

The kids are going to be very disappointed when they wake up and have to go to school both days of this two day week! 😄❄⛄

Happy 40th to ME!

We celebrated my big 4-0 this weekend and what a celebration it was! Family from all over the country came to visit (and I can pretend it was all for me!) and Greg rented a big house and we called it the party house and a party magically appeared while I was home with sick kids. Lucky me! :)

This wise wizard turned 40 this weekend.

This wise wizard turned 40 this weekend.

Sisters!

Sisters!

Sisters!

Sisters!

I love these ladies!

I love these ladies!

Yummy!!!!!!!! (good thing there aren't 40 candles on there!)

Yummy!!!!!!!! (good thing there aren’t 40 candles on there!)

Sisters! There was an amazing super moon behind us, but the camera sucks.... or maybe we just shone brighter! :)

Sisters! There was an amazing super moon behind us, but the camera sucks…. or maybe we just shone brighter! :)

This guy threw me an awesome birthday party!! I'm a lucky lady to have him.

<3 This guy threw me an awesome birthday party!! I’m a lucky lady to have him.

The next day we gathered in the beautiful sunshine to say a final farewell to Popcube.

Cousins!

Cousins!

Does it get any better than this smile?!

Does it get any better than this smile?!

Spreading ashes. We had such a beautiful day to say goodbye to Grandpa.

Spreading ashes. We had such a beautiful day to say goodbye to Grandpa.

Afterwards we went to brunch at Mickey’s. We were a pretty big crowd! :)

Sibs. I'm so lucky to have these people in my life. <3

Sibs. I’m so lucky to have these people in my life. <3

This post is not deep, but full of love nonetheless. I have an amazing family and I’m so happy any time we get to spend time together. There are lots more photos here and here.

Goodbye family. I love you all so much!

Goodbye family. I love you all so much!

My kiddos are still sick, so we took the day off for some rest and relaxation. Hopefully tomorrow finds us all well and back to school.

Stuff

I miss my blog.  With Facebook and Snapchat and my family group chat I find myself less and less priortizing the blog, but that makes me a little sad.  

I realize I missed Halloween all together, and like an awful Halloween prank we somehow ended up with a crazy wildcard for president, and both kids are sick, and I have breathing problems and doctors appointments and a surgery scheduled, but right now I just want to say that I love my school.  We had such a lovely Veterans’ Day ceremony with a flag ceremony and special guests and hand made flag projects waving in little hands.  Normally I would have missed this, but today I had a doctor appointment that went so smoothly that I got to work an hour early, just as kids were coming out for the ceremony.  Despite all the crazines in the world, I am so glad that my family is part of such a strong, thoughtful, caring community.  I sat through an EST meeting this afternoon and was struck by the true thought and concern expressed for each child on the agenda. Every day I am thankful for the school that has fostered both my children’s education and my own career.  There is light in this world and it shines from all of us. 

An awesome day of professional development!

* I’ll bet you don’t hear that title sentence very often!
** I haven’t blogged in so long that WordPress forgot who I was and made me log in again. :/
*** Happy November!! It’s a good month (says the almost old lady!)

I spent today at Vermont Fest 2016, an education conference with a technology focus. According to their website they are the “premier fall education conference,” so it’s pretty cool that I go to go. I started at a BORING session about grants and quickly excused myself and headed to the Innovation Space for some hands on learning! I saw some cool new STEM toys and got to make my first ever paper circuit card!! I am in love! I’m going back tomorrow to make some more. I’m also going to buy some supplies and make holiday cards with my enrichment groups. I’m excited already!

No denying this lady is turning 40! The woman who taught me how to do this wanted to post a picture on Twitter. I’d like to say it’s because I’m so cool, but I’m pretty sure she took pictures of everyone who did a project. :)

Inside the card you can see the copper tape and LEDs.

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I posted a little more info and a few more photos on the library blog. Check it out if you’re interested.

The one down side to my professional development day is that I had to leave right at the end and didn’t have time to stick around for the door prizes — and they had VERY COOL door prizes!! I had to leave to get back in time for Lex’s parent/teacher conference and truth be told, I considered being late just so I could stay for the chance at winning a prize! They were supposed to start at 3:45 and I had to leave by 4pm, but they hadn’t even started by 4pm so I didn’t stick around. I hope they have more awesome door prizes tomorrow and I hope I win one!! :) I did come home with a rather large collection of vendor pens, a full belly, and a head full of ideas, so I guess that’s pretty good too.

Go, go, go, go, STOP!

We have been going hard lately, but it all broke down yesterday afternoon.  Lex came home with a bunch of Social Studies homework, including work he mistakenly thought was done and was now several days late.  He also had a big packet about the elections that involved lots of reading, long answers, summarizing, and deep thinking.  He was stressed!  We got home and he collapsed on the floor in tears.  He told me he just couldn’t handle life these days.  I asked if it was just the homework, or something else too.  He got himself together long enough to say, “Something else happened.  Wednesday night.”   Daisy.  Then he was curled in my lap in tears again.

We agreed to skip karate and had a good snack instead.  As the afternoon went on and we worked though his homework, I started feeling worse and worse.  I was hoping to go to a middle school PTO meeting, but by that time I was snuggled in two sweaters and a scarf and not going anywhere!  Lex got his homework done just before bedtime, and I went to bed right after the kids with a fever of 101.6.

The fever broke over night, but the nausea began.  I am spending today on the couch, binging on Glee.  Just hit season 4, which feels like the “shark jump” season.  Maybe it’s time for a nap instead.

A rainy goodbye

We came home to find that Alan had been very busy. He is an excellent hole digger!

I can’t believe they told us to bury her in our little yard. I thought for sure that was against some rules somewhere. Alan took their advice to heart and went a full four feet down!

The rain was relentless but we went out anyway, dragging an unhappy boy and an even unhappier dog out with us. After I took this picture of Eve, Lex asked if I would please put the camera away. So I did. (until the very end, after he had left)

This about sums up the mood around here.

The sign looks very tiny in this picture.

We said our goodbyes, Alan brought a little levity to the moment, Arlo shivered in the rain, we lowered her down, and filled the hole back in. Eve, Alan, and I worked together to get the job done. Most of the credit goes to Alan, of course! Then we hung her in/out plaque on the fence as a little marker. I still find myself looking out the window for her and checking the sign (that is no longer there) to see if she’s out.

It will take us awhile, but everyone seems to be coping ok and the kids have started talking about another cat. Eve said this afternoon that she is going to start saving up for a kitten. We shall see.

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