Um, Merry Christmas?

I really have no excuse for why I’ve been an absentee blogger except to say that the holidays did, in fact, swallow me whole and just now spit me out the other side…  Do you feel that way?  We had some kind of craziness or activity every single day leading up to Christmas.  All good things but all serious time drains.  I’ve got a ridiculous amount of photos to share that I will now dump into this post.  I want to end this year by remembering all of the amazing things we did this holiday season yet I know this isn’t the most appropriate way to present this information.  But what am I gonna do?  I simply ran out of time to post each story individually…  Perhaps things will be better in 2012 in terms of blogging consistently?  Well, better in terms of everything would be really nice too.

Let’s see, I left off blogging on December 13th…  What happened next?  Oh, yes!  Our city’s annual Santa-on-the-fire-truck tradition.  He came zooming by our house at 9:30 PM on December 15th.  We’d been hearing him since 6:30 pm and had waited outside pretty much the entire time.  At 9 PM, I finally had the kids get into bed thinking he was not coming down our street after all.  Then the music and sirens got louder and louder.  The boys shot out of bed just in time to see Santa go speeding by our house!

I also invited Cutie Pie’s preschool class over for lunch during the last week of school before winter break.  We had a yummy assortment of preschool-friendly foods with plenty of pizza, salad and sangria for the moms 🙂  Then the kids camped out in front of the television to watch the new Ice Age Christmas movie on DVD.

Cutie Pie’s preschool Christmas program was on Friday, December 16th.  It struck me while sitting in the audience surrounded by all of the loving friends and family that this will be our last Christmas program at the preschool…  Cutie Pie will be entering Kindergarten in the fall and Eastminster will become a distant memory for him.  Bittersweet, indeed.  And see that little girl with the white fur trimmed dress in the first picture?  Her mom informed me that their entire family will be moving to Shanghai with her husband’s work in March.  It’s an exciting adventure for them but it will be so sad to see them go.  Wildman was in the three’s class with her middle son and Cutie Pie is now in VPK with her youngest daughter.  It’s funny how lives overlap and you get used to seeing the same familiar faces everyday and then one day they’re gone for whatever reason.  You realize how much you enjoyed their company over the years.

Saturday, December 17th brought the Satellite Beach Boat Parade!  It was our first time participating.  We were so excited to be a part of this cool Florida Christmas tradition!  We left the dock with Big Red, his kids and our across-the-street neighbors at 5 PM.  The parade began at the north entrance to the Grand Canal at 6 PM.  The weather could not have been more perfect- clear with wonderfully mild temperatures.

On Saturday night, after the boat parade, we quickly changed into our best vintage polyester and headed over to our friends’ Disco Funk Christmas Party!  What a crazy fun evening!

The Sunday before Christmas brought sugar cookie decorating with the cousins and breakfast for dinner!

We delivered Christmas goodies to the neighbors and hosted a little family party for Wildman’s 7th birthday on Monday, December 19th.  He insisted on an Angry Birds cake from Publix and was thrilled with all of his amazing gifts including a sweet child-size kayak from J and I.

On December 20th, we hosted a little beach bonfire for Wildman’s classmates to celebrate the last day of school before winter break and also roast s’mores in honor of Wildman’s birthday.

This post has grown much too long!  Looks like I will have to break it up into two.  Stay tuned!


I’m Back

I’m back from NYC!  Actually, I was back late Friday night.  It was a crazy busy, fun-filled girls’ trip.  There are tons of pictures sitting in iPhoto waiting to be blogged but the thought is quite daunting right now.  It’s the holiday season and I’m swamped. Just like everyone else, I imagine.  I’ll do my best to catch up on all that I’ve been up to but please be patient.

We’ve got Wildman’s first grade Christmas program at school this evening!  He’s got a speaking part that he’s been practicing for weeks.  I couldn’t be more excited to see him and will certainly take lots of photos.  All of the kids are wearing pajamas- how cute!

I’m off to help with Cutie Pie’s class Christmas crafts!  Write more you soon…  I hope!

Sad News

B’s mother-in-law passed away early Sunday morning per her own request to be removed from the ventilator and not resuscitated.  I spent the night with B and Flash’s kids on Friday night when it looked like she wouldn’t make it through the night.  She rallied a bit on Saturday but by nightfall things were looking grim again.  J and I received a phone call at 11 PM on Saturday night saying this was probably it.  J rushed over to be with the kids while I stayed home with ours.  By 4 AM on Sunday morning Flash’s mom was gone.

I am comforted that she is finally pain free and in a much better place but I feel so helpless.  As a result, I cooked like crazy all Sunday.  I delivered 2 meals complete with sides and pumpkin rolls for dessert.  Then I ran the causeway to burn off the rest of my anxiety.  I wish there was more I could do to console them.

I doubt B will ever forget her 40th birthday.  And not in a good way.  I brought over her presents and the decorations that I had been working on for her surprise party that never happened.  It saddens me to know that she was not able to view the giant cut-out 4 and 0 made up of old black & white photos from her past with joy.  And the “40 Sucks” lollipop bouquet kind of lost its funniness amidst such turmoil.

I hope that we will be able to celebrate one day when pain from this loss has lessened a bit.  For now, I’ll always be a phone call away.

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