turned 40 years old!!!
It's hard to believe that I am no longer in my 30's. They were good years. And I hope my 40's will be even better.
So, to recap a bit..
Brandy came to visit last week. Harlie loves Brodie!
On Wednesday night we went to Niki's Christmas party. It was a lot of fun and we got to catch up with my running friends. And we got to meet Kat's baby, Fielder. He is SO cute!
|Heather, Katherine, Kat (and her baby Fielder), me, Niki and Anna|
Tom felt bad for me, so he decided to cheer me up by giving me one of my Christmas/Birthday presents a little early. He gave me a photo album full of our photos from our session with Paige a few weeks ago. I didn't know they were ready and hadn't seen them yet. He already got them, had them printed, and put them in an album, so I was pretty impressed.
For my sister's party, I had asked if Brandy wanted to work a few hours. Our night nurse couldn't come in until 7:30, so I asked Brandy if she wanted to work from 6-7:30. She had plans for later, so she couldn't stay past 7:30. So, when Dawn cancelled, we decided we would go to the party for an hour, just to get out for a little bit.
When it was time to leave, Tom let me stay at the party and he went home! Woohoo!! So, my brother and his wife drove me home later that night. I didn't take my camera - so I don't have any pics. But, we had fun and it was nice to hang out and laugh after that crummy day.
Christmas Eve was a low-key day. Tom got up early and took Cooper to the grocery store with him. I stayed home the entire day.
That night we watched The Polar Express.
Then we put the kids to bed. I can't believe how easy they go to sleep on Christmas Eve! For all the Christmas Eve's I remember, my little brother (Cabell) and I played in our rooms for hours. And we would try to stay awake so we could see Santa. What's up with my kids? We tucked them in, and they just went to sleep. Crazy.
Then Tom and I had a late "date night" dinner. It's something we try to do about once a month or so. We put the kids to bed and then eat a really good meal (that Tom cooks of course) with wine and music. Tom made shrimp and grits with grouper on top. It was fabulous.
Since Tom had a brilliant idea this year for wrapping gifts - we had the time to relax. This year we ordered most of our gifts from Amazon using our Discover bucks. They were shipped to Tom's work. We had a date night a few weeks ago, and I met him at his office, we ordered a pizza and watched Christmas Vacation (my favorite Christmas movie of all time) and wrapped gifts. It was awesome. No stress - no worries. And we were mostly done weeks before Christmas.
After dinner we pulled out the gifts we still needed to wrap. And as I was going upstairs to check on the kids, I just happened to peek out my front window. At first, I thought I was seeing things. I thought, "What the hell? Is that a.. Flamingo?!?" So, I opened the door... and saw my yard was covered in flamingos!!!
I thought it was hysterical and I still laugh when I think about it. My friends Heather and Niki ordered the flamingo flocking for me. I had no idea there was such a service! Normally they come at the end of the next day to pick them up, but since it was Christmas, they didn't come and pick them up until this morning. So, I got an extra night of flamingos. I'm going to miss them. They were really cute.
On Christmas morning, we showed the kids the flamingos from an upstairs window. They got such a kick out of it, too!
We are terrible parents, and didn't take any pictures of them opening gifts on Christmas morning. In our defense, it's a little crazy and we seem to have to be helping and/or monitoring gift opening the whole time. And there wasn't really one particular gift that any of the kids really wanted this year.
The big hits so far are Harlie's Rainbow in my Room (which she is obsessed with and will not stop carrying it around shining a rainbow wherever she can), her Baby Alive...
|The chair and magnifying glass on the floor were gifts, too.|
She wanted to lay in it in the middle of all of this commotion:
So, Tom had to move her.
Murphy and Cooper got some Hero Factory stuff and have not stopped
|It's not a great pic, but it's the only one I have of them with the Hero Factory guys.|
Murphy also got some Lego sets (which he's already built) and lots of books.
The "big" gift this year was from Tom and I - a Wii. After watching Harlie play the Wii Fit during physical therapy, I thought we could all have a lot of fun with one of our own. Of course, we forgot to get them a game to play with it. What are we, amateurs? Tom's mom is coming to visit on Friday, and we knew that she got them a game, so I guess we kinda forgot about the week of not being able to play it. Oops.
At first I was a little disappointed in the kids' Christmas experience this year. It just didn't seem like much at all. And since there wasn't "the" toy that any of them wanted, I just felt like they were a little disappointed, too.
But, we did not want to overwhelm them, either. Or overwhelm our house! So, we kept it pretty simple this year. But, later on in the day, Murphy was looking at one of his books and he said that even though he didn't ask for it - that he was really glad that Santa brought it to him. So we had a little conversation about how Santa knows him and knows what he'll like, even though he didn't know he wanted it. And Grandma hasn't even come yet! So, between us, Santa, our family exchange (which was at 1pm on Christmas), Nana and Grandma - I think he's going to be more than happy.
And Harlie and Cooper are the perfect ages. They loved everything. And Harlie is both easy and difficult at the same time. She's easy in the fact that she doesn't want/ask for anything. But, then I'm afraid some of that Santa magic is lost for her. And that makes me sad. What if she wants something and doesn't know how to tell us? But, I guess I have to remind myself that Santa knows what she'll like even though she didn't know she wanted it.
At 1pm, my family came over for our gift exchange. We draw names between us since we just got too big for our wallets!
|My Dad, Tom and Cabell (my younger brother).|
|My Dad has taken up leather crafting so I got him leather stuff.|
|My sister's husband, Rick, opening up his gift.|
|Bruce, my big brother, opening up his.|
|Cabell opening his.|
The whole family went in together and got my Mom a Kindle Fire. She's the biggest fan of the Kindle in all the world. Yes. ALL THE WORLD. Trust me.
|Think she was surprised?|
|Think she liked it?|
Do you notice that my nephew Charlie (Bruce and Nancy's son) is holding an abacus? One of the gifts that my Mom gave Harlie is that abacus and we had to give her a hard time that now Harlie has an abacus and an iPad. Funny stuff.
|Rick and Sandy and their sons, Tanner and Cutter.|
|Maggie, calling her dad.|
|Nancy, Sandy and her daughter, Jordan.|
|Nancy (whose birthday is today - the 26th), me, Sandy, my Mom|
Maggie, Jordan and Kelly
Whew! That was a lot of pictures! It was a great Christmas and birthday! I hope you all had a very Merry Christmas, too!
Thanks for reading, my friends!!