Thursday, December 31, 2015

Goodbye, 2015

Happy New Year's Eve!

It's hard to believe that 2015 is coming to a close. I swear, the older I get, the quicker the years go by. I guess that's life though, right?

2015 was a good year for us. In February I celebrated my (gulp!) 31st birthday and we took a trip quick trip down to California to celebrate Valentine's Day.

In March we drove to Reno for the boys spring break. It was the first time I'd been back since my parents sold the house, which was hard, but it was still a great trip.

In April we had old friends come to visit from Colorado, took the boys camping, and celebrated our seventh wedding anniversary.

In May both boys finished up the school year, and we geared up for summer vacation.

June and July brought us long, hot days by the pool, trips to Sedona, an amazing visit from my sister and her family, as well as my parents, and we celebrated S's 31st birthday.

August got a bit crazy. L2 started his second year of Pre-school and L started KINDERGARTEN!!! It was a proud, emotional, bittersweet time for me. R moved out of his crib, after being caught climbing out of it numerous times. The biggest thing in August is S got a promotion that required him to go to Pennsylvania for 10 weeks to train. He left about a week after the boys started school and it was hard and a big adjustment for all of us!

In September L turned 6 and S got to come back for a week long visit. I started to find my footing as a "temporary single mom", and started to feel confident that I could do this!

In October L2 turned 4, we celebrated Halloween with good friends, and most importantly, S finally came back from Pennsylvania for good! We were so happy to have our Daddy back!

November brought is R's second birthday and another fun camping trip, although it was much colder this time!

And then, finally, December. This month was filled with holidays and school stuff and friends and family. It's always my favorite time of the year, and I'm always a little sad when it's over. But now I'm looking forward to a new year, and excited to see what it bring for our family!

I hope everyone had as wonderful a 2015 as we did, and I wish you all a safe and happy 2016!

Sunday, December 27, 2015

Christmas 2015

Well, another Christmas is in the books, and I'd say 2015 was pretty successful!

S was lucky enough to have Christmas Eve off, which means we got to spend the whole day eating, and drinking, and watching Christmas movies, and finishing wrapping. Christmas is by far my favorite holiday, but Christmas Eve might actually be my favorite day of the year. It has a feeling of celebration, while still having the anticipation of the next day. Christmas day is obviously amazing too, but there is always a sense of sadness for me, that after a month of shopping, and baking and wrapping and Christmas carols and movies… it's just suddenly over. But regardless of the inevitable sadness that it has to end, it's still the best time of the year!

L was over the top about Christmas this year. I think he may have inherited his mommy's freak flag for holidays! He spent the entire month counting down the days, singing carols and asking all kinds of questions about Santa. L2 and R were excited too, but seeing the amount of understanding and how inquisitive L was was pretty special.

(Trying to explain to R that he couldn't eat Santa's cookies!)

(Our annual tradition of "The Night Before Christmas" in front of the Christmas tree. I don't think anyone was actually listening to me!)

On Christmas Eve S and I always put on Christmas movies and put together/ finishing wrapping all of the boys Santa presents. This year we got them an easel and their own little table and chair set. (among many other things!)

We always stay up to late for what is inevitable an early morning wake up the next morning, but it's always worth it!

(R and S had a little bit of trouble waking up, but L and L2 were ready to go!)

We always walk down together so we can catch the boys expression on video, and then open stocking while Daddy makes us some much needed coffee! 

(Opening his stocking!)

After stockings (and coffee) we try to have the kids open gifts in a nice and orderly fashion, one at time. That usually doesn't work out, but we do manage to have some sort of organized chaos.

L2 and R got a little overwhelmed about halfway though. I think there was just too much going on. So we had to take a couple breaks and help them open a few presents. At a certain point they both just wanted to sit at their new table and eat the goldfish Santa left them in their stockings!

And, after it is all said and done, out house looks like a tornado went through it, but our family is happy and cozy as we play with new gifts and eat Christmas breakfast.

It was another Christmas, made perfect not because of the stuff, but because our little family was together and happy and healthy. Merry Christmas to all, and to all a Goodnight!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

California Christmas Trip 2015

Well, this last weekend we took our annual trip out to California to celebrate Christmas with S's family.

S had a great time, seeing his family and visiting with old friends. The boys had a great time, seeing their grandparents and aunt and uncle and getting to run free and explore on their amazing property.

(Bath time in Poppa and Grandma's super cool tub!)

I'd love to tell you what a great time I had…. except I came down with strep throat on the second day. Seriously, is that Murphy's Law or what? I've spent the last month taking care of everyone while one illness after another went through our house, all the while never catching anything because I just couldn't. Literally I think I willed my body into being healthy because we just didn't have the time for me to be sick.

But, of course, the second I had chance to relax and catch my breath I ended up down for the count.

(In all fairness, it's probably my fault. I did volunteer at L's school the day before we left!)

Anyway, enough of my pity party. The boys and S had a great time, and that's what is important. S's sister was in town, and his brother is living at home again, and the boys love spending time with them. We also got to spend time with S's best friend from high school, and his girlfriend, on the night before I got sick.

And then I pretty much have no pictures or stories, because I spent the next day and a half in bed. I know, I know…. poor me. But it did really suck.

By Sunday  I was able to pull it together enough to to Christmas/opening presents with the family.

And as usual, our boys got totally spoiled!

(This is L2's "angel" face! Don't' let it fool you!)

The boys got so many toys I was surprise that we were able to fit them all back in the car for the drive home! And the hard part was convincing them that we probably shouldn't open ALL of them before we left the next day!

(Poppa opening his present!)

(This is R's "Give me my present look")

I was proud of the boys with how grateful and thankful they were for all of their gifts. At this age, it's easy for them to get consumed by the toys, but the boys did really well!

And they also made out like bandits…..

So that was our last day. We went out to dinner that night, which was fun, and I'm glad I was feeling well enough to go and eat. Honestly, by that point I was starving! Strep throat really does a number on eating!

So the weekend wasn't exactly a blast for me, but the moments I was around for were wonderful. And everyone else had fun, which is the most important thing!

(I have to add that we are now home, tomorrow is Christmas Eve, and S just got diagnosed with Strep! Please send healthy thoughts to our family!)

Monday, December 21, 2015

L's Christmas Party (kindergarten)

Have I told you guys I'm L's homeroom mom?

I complain to S about it a lot, because it is a lot of work, but truthfully I love it. Not to get cheesy, but this is what I feel like i was meant to do. I love being involved in my children's lives and being able be a main person in their school lives.

So I put together their teacher gifts this year. We got contributions from the whole class and got each teacher a $75 coffee gift card, with a cute mug to go with it. We also gave gift tags to each kid and had them write on it what they loved about their teacher, and then put them all in a cute mason jar for them.

It was super cute and we had all the kids meet out front before school so they could walk in together to present the gifts and wish them a Merry Christmas! It was so cute, and the teacher got teary eyed! (OK, I may have too!)

After we presented the teacher gifts the kindergartner's had an "on campus" field trip, which I got chosen as a volunteer for.

It was very sweet, they had six or seven different "stations" set up in the multipurpose room and they circulated through all of them. They included things like: snow making, cookie decorating, making your own stocking, making reindeer food, story time…. I can't remember what else!

I got to help out with the cookie station and the snow making station, and seeing how excited and amazed all the kids were by everything was really cool!

I'm so lucky to be so present in L's school life, and even luckier that he is still at an age that he is excited/proud that I am there!