Thursday, December 31, 2009

December 31, 2009

Scouting a spot for our family photo.
Or, as it turns out, watching one of the last sunsets of 2009.
I've been reflecting on this year. It's been a big one. But then again, I feel that way about each year of my life.
All I remember about January is that it was a month full of late nights and business plans. We were squeezed into our tiny apartment and most everything we owned was shoved into a garage. But the weather in Houston was beautiful, and many days it was literally what kept me going.
In February we said good-by to our Millenia. I was sad to give up my sporty black car with the sun roof and "cool factor". I parked next to a mirrored building in our new family vehicle and my reflection surprised me. I was 27, very pregnant and wearing a velour jumpsuit, with two little kids, getting out of a Pilot. I remember thinking, "oh my...who AM I?"
In March we took the plunge. David quit his job, we moved to Kansas City and opened shop. I was too excited to be home, too tired of stressing the "what ifs", and too pregnant to care about the details.
April. Roman James Painter. Most definitely the best thing about 2009. He was 3 weeks early. Which meant that it took me May, June, July, and August to recover, unpack and get into my mother groove. David was working all.the.time. Most nights not home until 9 or 10pm.
September granted us more time together, and bolstered us with a little confidence. I think we were getting the hang of living with all the changes.
And then the holiday season. Pumpkins, falling leaves, turkey dinners, family togetherness, snow, Christmas music and hot chocolate.
365 days. I like the rhythm of life. This is a brief and flippant summary, but lurking in between the words are big life lessons. I'm grateful to be learning them, painful and joyful combined.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

A Merry Christmas

It really was the merriest of days.
This year we awoke in our own home, which was so delightfully fun.
David remembered with a start that he had forgotten to move our elf Essa.
He tried to sneak downstairs without waking the kids.
But as he passed their room Lily sat straight up and in a groggy voice,
and pointing her finger toward her dad said,
"You tell me if Santa left presents down there!"
And then they were both awake.
Hopping up and down at the top of the stairs.
As they got to the bottom and saw the tree,
we heard Zach say in his adorable 4-year old voice,
"Well, I guess we weren't on the naughty list!"
What a glorious time of year.
I was so happy to fulfill their simple and sweet Christmas wishes
(hotwheels and a watch that glows!)
I love my husband and my three precious children. They are my joy.
They are the best kind of Christmas gift.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009


My sister Anna snapped a family picture for us this year. It was a chilly day and the kids waited in the car until the 'just right time'. When they hopped out, Anna said "Let me take your picture Zach and Lily", and she told me that with a giggle they grabbed onto each other like this.
I love this picture. A Christmas gift to me. Thank you Anna.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

An entire week (an important week!) sacrificed to flu suffering.
In my feverish state only one thought went round and round.
Why (!?) did I not get the vaccine.
My little list of Christmas "to-dos" kept getting pushed,
"maybe tomorrow. maybe tomorrow."
Until finally, "maybe next year" and that sort of thing is hard for me.
I hate being sick.
But Christmas cards...oh, their coming.
They might be Happy New Year cards instead.
I was thinking you could just look at our family photo and point to the people with flu.
Maybe I'll put the answer on the back.
And really, won't that be fun?

Monday, December 14, 2009

Lydia Luella

...anxiously awaited blessing from above.
You have made your parents so happy.
By the way, your parents Ben and Margaret...coolest parents ever.

I think you have the sweetest name.

Monday, December 7, 2009


...because the first big snow of the season is headed our way
...because Christmas shopping online is so convenient
...because our tree makes everything so cozy
...because eggnog is on tap at my house
...because the little book i made for Roman will be showing up soon

(as soon as the mailman braves the ice and snow)
(pages from his homemade book below)

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

We tried...

and we are totally trying again at Christmas.