December 25, 2012

That One Christmas In Ohio

Christmas in Ohio

When my brother and I were little, we would sneak out of bed to see if Santa came at, like, three in the morning. I didn't sleep most Christmas eves of my childhood. There are a few middle of the nights under the glow of the tree that I can remember so clearly that I can be right there, I can smell it.

Last night we went to John & Connie's and they took us in with their family and friends. We sang carols by candlelight and, right in the middle of Jingle Bells, Santa arrived with a bag full of presents and his book with the name of every child there. He knew the exact doll Ivy wanted, and the Legos the boys didn't have yet. The magic, we were in it.

I hope I never misplace the look on their faces when he came to the door, and how I felt watching them. And the most precious sight of Ivy zonked in her carseat on the ride home. And when we were together in the home we made for now and everything was so very OK.

December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas Eve 2012

Christmas Eve 2012

December 21, 2012


snowy day

If today had been the end of the world, I should say that I wouldn't have wanted to spend it any other way. The snow fell and fell softly around us. Neighbors brought cookies, friends brought gifts, the UPS man brought packages.

snowy day

snowy day

Goodbyes were said, to make room for new Hellos. 

snowy day

And while this world year is coming to a close, a whole new life awaits, wide open: in a very unexpected and serendipitous turn of events, we are preparing to move again, this time to the Oregon coast. Talk about a view.

December 14, 2012

Merry Miss Much

I had just swept, and I'd just wiped the counter. I made noodles with olives because I thought it would be easy, in between decorating the tree and helping Carter with long division. But then I dropped an entire bowl onto the floor, and missed the garbage can when I went to throw it all away.

I'm going to miss it when our tree branches are no longer weighted down to the floor with three ornaments per branch and laminated reindeer heads with tiny school pictures.

It's so easy to forget. I know this because already I hold a ceramic blob made in art and I don't remember if it was Noah's or Carter's. The blue Hallmark Baby's First Christmas ornament... I can't recall whose first it was. I look at our tree, uneven and I suppose not exactly how I prefer it to look, but I imagine my mom, and my mother-in-law decorating their trees just so, how they like it. Perfect and without the assistance of small children. And I know all too soon that will be me someday. I already miss this.

I read Ira Sleeps Over to them before bed Again, in my best librarian storytime voice. Everything is special by Christmas-tree-light.

originally published 11.28.11

December 12, 2012

Twelve Twelve Twelve


I wondered what today would be like, kind of expecting it to be special being 12-12-12 and all. Like something was going to happen.

Well, I dropped Ivy off at school and went to the store for dinner and more sugar cookie supplies, ran home to put a roast in the crock pot (it was incredibly delicious!), and then back out to finish up some Christmas shopping. I don't even remember all the stores I made it to before picking Ivy up and taking her along with me for more errands and present-buying. We came home and I straightened the house and finished up some knitting and the last of the gifts to send to family. We're going to be here-home for Christmas, not back-home, it's our first time away. Our first time wrapping and sending off presents to make sure they arrive in time.

12-12-12 was quite a productive day, I might have even set a few dreams and wishes off into the air. And I feel like something is going to happen.

December 10, 2012

Use Your Light

Christmastime 2012

I don't have a life list. I don't even make New Year's resolutions. There are plenty of things I hope to do someday but I feel like if I permanently put them out there then it's pressure and forced and planned and then I will probably dread doing them. I want to be able to buy real art someday, and go to Paris again (and again) and create a spectacular knitting pattern and a million other things but I want those things to surprise me, to sneak up on me, to move easy along the way. Not something I will strike a line through and then on to the next item. Me and my John Lennon ways.

The only thing that would be on my life list is... to not die. It happened upon me suddenly, to find out that I am afraid of dying. Not for what's ahead, but for who I leave behind.

Christmastime 2012

It was Christmas break when I read Jane Eyre for the first time. I didn't leave the living room couch until I finished, yet transported almost out of body, definitely somewhere else. I even remember the cassette tape that was playing over and over- a collection of classical music from Victoria's Secret, I think it was $1 with the purchase of Rose Garden lotion, or maybe it was Strawberries & Champagne. I cried at the end of that book, and would every time I re-read it through the years.

Christmastime 2012

Last year on Christmas Eve I sat in the ER with Carter's severe allergic reaction to a nut in a cookie, and there in triage also discovered he had lice. I could not get the vision out of my head- of their photo with Santa that morning, Carter's head leaned against Santa's. Did we give Santa lice? I've never done so many loads of laundry and I was never so tired in all my life. I honestly didn't think I was going to make it, but I did. Here I am. It's been a year and I still check their heads obsessively. I don't know if I'll ever fully recover.

Sugar Cookies

It's dark when Noah goes out to the bus in in the early morning. He has a flashlight on his keychain and every morning I say "I love you, use your light" and I watch from the window and he does, until the other kids can see, so he turns it off. And I think about the depth of that very thing, every morning.

Christmastime 2012

I've drank and was too busy to taste, I've traveled through time with no recollection of where I've been, I've tripped and tangled, but my regrets are few compared to all the good that I have seen and savored and remembered with fondness.

Christmastime 2012

December 3, 2012

December FOUR

kids holiday 2012

I won the kid lottery. Four times. 

I realized today that I am one of those moms who thinks her kids are perfect. I do. Because they give me so much reason to believe it. They are like masterpieces. I am in awe. 


I used to take photos of my kids on the first of every month, now it's on the fourth. Four for four. (Here's December 2010 & 2011.)