Merry Christmas!

I know I’ve been quiet on the blogging front lately but that’s because I’ve been enjoying my family, my real life, and my children… we’ve been busy making memories! Today was filled with lots of traditions. Everything from making my famous cheeseball, to scattering reindeer dust on the front lawn, opening Christmas stockings, and leaving milk and cookies for Santa… what an amazing day with my loving family!

Jenny came home from college last week and after changing her major from marine biology to forensic science, decided to move back to Austin to be close to family. We really have an awesome family with so much love for each other! And we all really, really like each other too. My mom is my best friend and lives next door. Now Jenny has moved in with her! She’s signed up for 18 credit hours next semester at the community college and will transfer to Texas State or UT next fall.

My mom and I divvied up Christmas duties this year. I did the shopping and she did the wrapping. She is a master gift-wrapper. Every present is beautiful, with ribbons and bows. I am so grateful for her connection to us and her presence in our lives.

The kids are doing great at school. Dominic is just SO smart, it’s so much fun listening to his day-to-day musings. A few weeks ago, we were doing the kids’ bedtime routines and I was cuddling with Curtis while listening to Dominic read to Anna (at the moment, there are two beds in Anna’s room and Dominic has been sleeping in her room). Then it was time for lights out so we were in the whispering, soft giggles and snuggles stage of night-night, when Dominic pipes up with, “Mommy, what happens if you go to jail?” I’m like, “Ummm, what?” “What happens if you and Daddy go to jail?” “Well, honey what do you mean? What happens to us or to you?” “To me,” he replies very seriously. “I guess Nana would take care of you, sweetie. But…” “What if Nana died already? She is pretty old.” *inner snort* “Then I suppose you would go with Jenny.” “Jenny and Chris, you mean?” “Yes, sweetheart, I’m sure Jenny and Chris will be married by then. But honey, mommy and daddy would never go to jail! You have to do something really bad to go to jail.” “Like what?” “Like steal something or hurt someone.” He is quiet for a while and says, “Oh, okay.” What in the world, right?

Anna is of course having a difficult time with this time of year… the anticipation of Santa coming and Christmas morning is driving her (and us) a little crazy. I can’t tell you how many times she’s asked when he’s coming and if she can open presents. Hundreds. She’s had a daily meltdown for the last 2 weeks that runs about 20-30 minutes of intense crying in her room. It’s like she reaches a boiling point of managing her emotions and just needs that release to be able to cope. But you know the coolest thing about Anna and this time of year? That she is excited about Santa. She’ll be 10 in March so I’m happy to be sharing this magic with her.

We are very, VERY excited for tomorrow! Anna especially has asked Santa for something super-extra special and I can’t wait to see if he’s bringing it. I will have tons of photos to share.

I also want to take a moment to think of my friends who are going through challenging times… a child in the hospital, another holiday with a child in heaven, a rocky patch in your marriage, managing the holidays as a single parent, battling a serious illness, whatever the challenge… I’m thinking of you and holding you tight in my heart. Merry Christmas, my friends!

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