Saturday, August 7, 2010

I'm still here. Really.

I KNOW. It's been a while. It's been tough lately for me to really get access to the computer to do the things that I usually do. For starters, it's summer and I'd really rather be outside playing with my kid, or swimming in the pool than to have my nose buried in the laptop...oh, and my husband and his brother (who is currently staying with us for a while) both play World of Warcraft, and if by some miracle I have time to use the computer...well, I can't because someone is always on it. lol.

HOWEVER, my dad fixed that problem for me. :)
I'm going back to school in the fall, and since I'm doing that, he bought me a laptop. And it's MINE. And WoW is NOOOOOOT going to be installed on it. He'd have to pry the thing out of my cold, dead hands to do so. Hehehe.

So, in other news...yes. I'm going back to school. Starting out with 2 classes, and we'll see how it goes from there. My plan is to get a second bachelor's degree in Psychology. Eventually to pair with my art therapy, anyone? That's in a perfect world, which we all know it is not. But we'll see. :)

So, that's it. I'm still here. Honest.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Whoa, hello there!

*brushes dust off blogspot*

Wow. Okay, so it's been a while. In my defense, I've been making MAJOR changes in my life I've been a bit preoccupied.

*I finally got help for my depression. That was a big step for me.
*I joined a website geared toward healthy living and healthy choices, and as a result have lost a decent amount of weight. I still have a lot to go, but it's a great first step.
*I am FEELING BETTER. That's the important thing.

My lovely daughter just had her 4th birthday. Wow. 4!! When did that happen?! She's turning into such a little girl, it's insane. Very opinionated. Wonder where that comes from??

We also had a very nice Mother's Day. I got a card, and a great day with my hubby and my kid. I loved it.

Monday, April 12, 2010


I've been in such a funk over the past year...I've felt emotionally shut down, physically bogged down. I'd fallen into a deep depression and didn't see any way out. Finally something in me snapped and I had to get help. I knew I was hurting my family. I wasn't taking care of myself, I was miserable at work, nothing was "right" in my world.

I finally went to the doctor and even he told me that he could see the sadness in my eyes. That was the biggest wake up call for me. He gave me a plan to help me. I also decided at that moment to actually DO something about my weight. it's been a thorn in my side for years now. I've been willing enough to complain about it, but I just couldn't get out of my own mind long enough to fix it. I finally made that breakthrough and realized that I was not only hurting myself, I was hurting my husband and my daughter. All the "reasons" I was giving for not having enough time to work out were just flimsy excuses for not doing it at all.

So, along with the meds, I've started taking care of myself. I'm eating food that's good, healthy fuel for my body. I've started exercising at 5 every morning. Even on my days off. No more excuses. No more self loathing and self pity.

So, this is it. My big breakthrough. I don't feel like working out is a chore, I actually look forward to it. My new meal plan isn't a "diet" but rather a whole new way of looking at food. I feel better. Mentally and physically. I am so excited to get to where I need to be. Where I should have been long ago.

Friday, April 2, 2010


*Whew* Glad I got that out.

Sorry I've been MIA lately. It's been so hectic around here that I feel like I've barely had time to breathe. In a nutshell, here it is.

*I had another birthday, yay for feeling old.
*We spent a week in NC with my mom and family. Good times! Except for the violent stomach bug. More on that in a minute.
*Came back from vacation and am back to work...and then the laptop died. Like, died permanently died. Hence the main reason I have been "unconnected" recently.
*I've been struggling emotionally with lots of crap, but I'm honestly working to fix it.

Okay, first of all. Another birthday. Ugh. It's not that I don't enjoy my birthdays, because I do! But it's also a reminder of how old I,m getting!!

A giant bouncy birthday cake? Makes my hips hurt just thinking about it.

Seriously. Birthdays always make me feel a bit introspective. Another year gone....where did it go? What the hell did I accomplish this past year? That type of stuff. Soon enough, life takes over again and we're back to the daily grind, forgetting all of the deep thoughts that plague us at times like that. On again on again, jiggety jig.

Vacation! Yes. We took 10 days off of work and drove the 11 hours down to my parents house in NC. Fun fun. Actually, it wasn't too bad. We left home at 1am (I slept for like 5 hours so I could drive first). Leaving that early made the trip go soooo fast! But here's a quick note for anyone thinking about driving through West Virginia. Before you enter the state of WV, make sure the gas tank is full and your bladders are empty...once you are on the "Expressway" (and I use that term loosely) there is nowhere to stop. And I mean NOWHERE. Hardly any exits. And the ones that are there are all dark and seemingly lead directly into the forest. It's truly bizarre. And scary when your GAS LIGHT comes on and there's no exit in sight. But we made it, thankfully. So chalk that one up to a lesson learned.

But the week with my family was really nice. We got there on Saturday. Sunday we had Sami baptized, and it was also my niece's 8th birthday. She had some kind of stomach bug, but she was a trooper. Monday we went to the NC Zoo and had a great time. Until that night. Sami caught the stomach bug...and spent all night throwing up. Mind you, she's only 3, so running to the bathroom is not an option. I had to sit up with her all night and keep a trash can handy. Poor peanut. It's absolutely pitiful to look in your baby's eyes when they are dry-heaving and they want you to make the hurt go away and there's nothing you can do. So I got literally no sleep. At 5:30am I finally woke up my hubby so he could take over while I grabbed a few winks. Tuesday was laid back...Sami was feeling better (thanks to Uncle Scott and the anti-nausea meds he called in for us) and we just chilled for a while.

Wednesday we went to a "paint your own ceramics" shop with my mom and sister. Sami chose a piggy bank, and had soo much fun painting it! Unfortunately, my sister caught the stomach bug next. So she was down for the count Wed and Thurs. On Thurs, Steve and Sami and I drove to Raleigh to go to the Marbles Kid's Museum. It was soo awesome! Except for the fact that I got the stomach bug too. Persistent little thing, it wasn't going to be happy until it systematically took out every member of my family. We had to leave the museum early, which didn't make Sami too happy, but vomiting in the museum wasn't too appealing to me. We got home and I spent the next 8hours in bed, fighting the bug. Fortunately for me, the bug was very violent but short lived, and I was feeling better by Friday afternoon.

We hung low Friday because we were leaving to go home on Saturday. I have such a hard time saying goodbye to my mom. I was a wreck and cried. And cried. It was awful, and I felt bad for Steve. I was a sniffling, snotty mess.

We finally got home and back to work. It was at that point that the laptop died. Corrupt hard drive. Yippee. Thankfully, it was still covered under the warranty. So they fixed it for free. BUT, they were unable to recover any data from it, so eveything I've done over the past year was lost. *sob* But now at least I have the computer back. And I've learned another lesson about backups.

And this is getting too long to go into the last part of my problems. I'll save that for another day. Stay tuned, it's sure to be fun.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Excuse me?

Where did the attitude come from?? My three (soon-to-be-four) year old has been posessed by a teenager. What. The. Hell?

See? Cute three year old. However, I fear that this is in my future.

Sure, you can say I started the ball rolling by teaching her to use black eyeliner so early....but no. I don't think that's it. Cute kitty whiskers do not equal surly, over-makeuped, under-dressed teenagers. I just can't figure out where this attitude is coming from. Just the other day she asked me for some juice. Innocent enough, right? Well, I'll let you be the judge of that.

Sami: Mama, can I please have some more juice?
Me: Sure. Just give me a minute to finish unloading the groceries and I'll get you some.
S: (waits roughly 15 seconds) Hellooo-oooh. I said I wanted more juice.

Uhhh, excuse me?!? If I'd even entertained the notion of talking to my mother like that at ANY age, I'd still be picking my teeth out of the back of her hand. But the thing that kills me is that the girl is respectful to other adults. But to me? All bets are off. And it's making my blood pressure top out. Whoever said that "3 is the new 13" had no idea just how right they were! I have no clue what to do with her now, let alone when she's a hormonal, irrational, snotty, self-important teenager. Gah. Someone hold me please. Or send booze. And chocolate.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

and the Award goes to...

Me! Wow! Awesomeness. My mommy friend

has awarded me with the Beautiful Blogger Award! Yay! Paige has a wonderfully informative blog, one of the cutest baybees ever, and has been a great resource in the short time I've known her. She's the one behind our ADM Blog Hop, too! Much love for her!

Ok, so here are the rules for this award meme:
1. Thank the person who gave it to you.
2. Pass this award on to 15 bloggers you've recently discovered and think are fantastic.
3. Contact the bloggers to let them know they've won.
4. State 7 things about yourself.

So I have to list 7 things about goes.

1. I am the youngest of 5. (And yet, I'm technically an only child. Go figure)
2. My husband and I both had cats named Simon before we met. We named our family cat Simon in honor of this fact, and found out that some things are better left alone. Most notably the cat. lol.
3. I have had 6 cats, 2 puppies, 2 iguanas, 3 ferrets, and numerous fish/frogs/crabs/underwater creatures as pets. Thankfully, not all at the same time.
4. I have 1 tattoo, and plans on at least 2 more.
5. I have a degree in Art. Haven't done crap with it, except cultivate some pretty kickass hobbies.
6. I love the ocean, but hate the sand. And I mean HATE. But not enough to keep me away from the water.
7. I get horribly carsick.

Now that I've done that, I have to give the award to 15 other bloggers. Unfortunately, just about everyone I know who blogs was covered by Paige...

Saturday, February 20, 2010


Well, at least my blog gets a lil makeover. Thanks to leelou blogs for this cute new layout!

Maybe I'll use this inspiration and get myself a bit of a new look too!

Friday, February 19, 2010

What *exactly* is in that sippy cup, anyway?!

So the other day it hit me while trying to get my daughter ready for bed. All of a sudden I completely understand why it's so freaking annoying to try and deal with an overtired/wound up toddler. I am going to share this revelation with you, dear friends.

Those of you with toddler age (or older) kids will laugh because you know it's true, and because it makes so much sense once you hear it! Those without kids, or with smaller babies, will laugh because it's funny, but you have yet to really grasp what I'm about to say. ::evil maniacal laugh::

Trying to handle a toddler in Active Sleep-avoidance Mode is not unlike dealing with a severely drunk person while you are still sober.

::waits for realization to take hold::


Seriously! I'm right! Go ahead, admit it! It makes complete sense now, doesn't it?

1. They cannot be reasoned with, and evidently lose their sense of hearing.
2. They think they're funny when they are soooo not.
3. They laugh hysterically and fall all over the place, and invade your personal space in the process.
4. They babble incoherent phrases and words that make no sense whatsoever, usually at very high volume.
5. They have no attention span at all (not like toddlers really do anyway, but whatever.)
6. They say inappropriate things and believe that it's cute.

I could go on, but you guys know what it's like, right?

To further prove my theory, tonight we went out to dinner (Sami and I) with some friends from my work. Sami started acting all crazy and all I could do is laugh. It was totally like she was drunk.

Sami: (making crazy babbling sounds like the Tazmanian Devil and jumping around in the booth)
Me: What are you doing?
S: (leans right into my face) MAMA! I have to poop! (kisses me smack on the lips)
Me: (raises eyebrows) Really? We just left the bathroom.
S: (crazy babbling noises) I'm gonna color now. Color!! Color!! Colorcolorcolorcolor.

I, naturally, had to check her chocolate milk to see if they hadn't spiked it with something. She was acting normal, even by her standards. All I could do was shake my head. I tried my best not to laugh, but I just couldn't help it. And, true to form, that just served to egg her on even more. Ridiculous.

So, I think the answer to this problem is quite obvious.

Drink heavily. That way, you can act as crazy as they are and it'll be funny!
I'm kidding, I'm kidding. Sort of.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Let it snow!

Welcome to the Weekly ADM Blog Hop. Anyone can join in! Just blog on topic between now and next Monday, include the MckLinky code (below) in your post, and hop on over to your fellow bloggers!

This week's topic:

Here in Cleveland we are snowed in but everywhere has days where cabin fever can creep in. What are your favorite indoor activities to do with your kids?

Ok. So first of all, we're not in Cleveland anymore, we're residing in balmy Erie, PA now. But, for the first time in recorded history (I think), CLEVELAND has more snow than ERIE. It's some sort of alternate universe. Or maybe the beginning of the apocalypse. Not sure. But anywow, there are things that we do to bide our time indoors while the flakes are a-flyin' outside.

I work out of the house, so at preschool they do a lot of art projects and such. This carries over to our home time. She LOOOOOOVES to draw/color/paint/whatever. An art project?? Sign her up. Heh. Just the other day, she asked if she could go outside and color on the sidewalk with her chalk. Nevermind the foot and a half of snow out there. It's time to color!!! She gets that naturally, by the way. When I was her age, I used to say that I was going to be an "ArtistTeacherMother" when I grew up... 2 out of 3 ain't bad ...

Oh yeah, right. Back to the topic at hand. :)

So, art. That's a biggie. She also loves pretend play. She's extremely independent, and veeeerrrry creative. We got her a kitchen 2 Christmases ago (well, actually Santa got it for her, but who's counting?) She plays with it every day. Still. She'll "cook" us food and snacks. I hear her playing in her kitchen, feeding her babies and stuffed animals. Sometimes scolding them and putting them in Time Out. Playing Mommy. She told me the other day that she wanted to me ME when she grows up. ::melts::

Right. I keep getting side tracked. Hehehe.

One thing we used to do to keep her occupied when she was a baby is not unlike playing "fetch", but it was heeelarious. When she started walking and talking, Steve and I would have her "deliver" things from one room to the other. For instance, I'd be in the kitchen (presumably making dinner) and he'd be in the living room. I'd hear him say, "go take this to Mama" and she'd come toddling into the kitchen, giggling the whole way, carrying whatever treasure (i.e. Random Object) he wanted me to have. She'd come in carrying a remote control. I'd send her back out to him, carrying a plastic cup. He'd send her back with a couch pillow. I'd have her take him a bag of rice. So on and so forth. Then, after a few trips, we'd have her deliver the items back to the rooms from which they originated, thus ending the game. Seriously, this would keep her busy for a looong time. And, it also wore her out really well. ::evil grin::

We're pretty laid back. We find fun stuff to do when we can't get outside to play. But the bottom line is, we spend time together. And that's what matters. So let it snow. We can handle it!

MckLinky Blog Hop

Monday, February 8, 2010

Too Bad So Sad

It was Sunday morning. Steve had made a wonderful breakfast of french toast and sausage. We cleaned up and did what most other people do on the weekend...I was reading and he was putzing around on the laptop. Sami was contentedly playing in her room. And then IT happened.

I heard a noise that I *thought* came from the kitchen. It sounded like a muffled "clink" kind of noise. But, I didn't hear anything else, so thought nothing of it. About a minute later, Sami starts crying hysterically. Steve and I look at each other...and head upstairs to see what happened. Sami was in the bathroom, crying. "I need a towel!" Steve was trying to calm her down and figure out what the hell happened while I went to her room to see if something was wrong in there.

Yep. She finally did it. She broke the Tinkerbell waterglobe that Santa (aka: ME) brought her. We've been telling her since Christmas not to carry them around (ironically, my mom got her one too, it has a flower fairy in it and they play the same song, lol), and that they can break. Well, I guess she had taken them off the shelf and was putting her baby dolls to sleep and bumped them together. The thinner one (go ahead, say it. CHEAPER one that I got) broke and there was water and plastic snow and glitter and glass shards all over.

Steve took Sami downstairs while I started cleaning it up. Yes, I was mad because she doesn't listen. If I said it once, I said it 3 dozen times. But, she finally learned the lesson. And no, she didn't cut herself, in case you were wondering. But she was seriously in hysterics. Running around the lower living room crying and carrying on something like this.


Even though I was slightly disturbed (she tried to clean it up so we wouldn't find it! She's a crafty little one, that girl of mine. Gotta keep an eye on her....), I had a hard time not laughing..."too bad so sad?" Where did that come from? Hahaha! I've decided that I have a pronounced evil streak. Who laughs at their child when they're so obviously overwrought with emotion? Me. That's who. If you don't like it, too bad so sad. ;)

Parenting our way...

Welcome to the weekly Blog Hop! Anyone is free to join in. Simply enter your information in the MckLinky at the bottom of this post, repost the MckLinky code in your own post on the topic, and enjoy your fellow bloggers' posts. Remember to leave some Comment Love!

So, I missed the First ADM Blog Hop because Somebody Who Shall Remain Nameless was hogging the computer every time I could feasibly sit down to blog. *grumbles* So anyhow, here goes.

This Week's Topic: What aspects of your parents' parenting do you want to continue in parenting your own kid(s)?

I love my parents. I am very close to them. My childhood was happy, and I grew up as a reasonably well adjusted child, even as a product of divorced/remarried parents. I got good grades (yes, they *could* have been better, but I was kind of lazy as far as that was concerned, lol), was in sports and activities, had a wonderful group of friends, a job, etc. But, they were also strict. I had a curfew of usually 10. I had chores. I had to keep my room clean. I got grounded for not following the rules (like calling if I was not coming straight home from school). We did things a certain way in our family that was routine to me, and apparently from an experience with a college boyfriend, alien to some others. ("What? You have to take out the trash AND LOAD THE DISHWASHER?!? Gad, you're treated like a slave!" And yes, he actually said that to me.) But, I was HAPPY. And I have so many wonderful memories and stories...I seriously wouldn't want it any other way. That being said, when I got to college and had fewer rules governing me, I kind of went bat-shit crazy. I was doing things that I never imagined I'd ever do at that point in my life. Drinking. Smoking. Sex. Skipping class. I was a crazy child.

The ONE thing I regret is that I didn't feel comfortable going to my parents with problems I had. This proved to be an issue in my college years. But, I'm working hard to not be so closed up. My mom says she knows if something's bothering me because I don't call for a few days. Good grief, I'm very transparent. lol. As far as my own kid(s) go, I want to be available for her to talk to me whenever. Whatever happens. I want her to be comfortable asking questions. All with the same loving atmosphere I grew up with. I refuse to be a helicopter parent. I want her to make her own decisions and mistakes, as long as they're not dangerous, obviously.

Right now, she is only 3 (soon-to-be-4) and we're pretty laid back. We take things as they come. We don't freak if she starts to sniffle. We've only been to the ER twice, and they were both for honest-to-goodness, blood gushing emergencies. However, the one problem I'm having is her attitude. She can be so defiant sometimes...and I'm just not sure if that's her personality (God help me), or if it's just a toddler stage. Oh, and she can be such a drama queen. I don't know what to do about that either. But, we're hands-on, and we're Parenting. Right or wrong, we're doing our best.

MckLinky Blog Hop

Monday, January 25, 2010

Meet Foxy.

So the other day, I go to pick Sami up from preschool, and her teacher pulled me aside. This is rarely a good thing (i.e. "Your daughter smacked one of her friends and laughed right in her teacher's face." Quit laughing. It really happened). But, she was smiling, so I figured that it can't be bad. She explained that they're starting to work on scissor skills, and they made polar bears. When she asked Sami what her polar bear was doing, she answered with, "His name is Foxy. He's taking a walk."

To H&R Block.
cries laughing

So, when I asked her what Foxy was doing at H&R Block, she said, "He's going to get his money back. Then he's going shopping for a bit. He needs a new hat."

I nearly peed my pants laughing.
I love this kid. :)

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Another New Year...

Where the hell does the time go? Good grief, we're already into 2010? Crazy. Personally, I am grateful that 2009 is gone. It was definitely not a good year for me, and I am looking forward to a new beginning, as it were.

So I've had the chance to reflect a bit and think about this upcoming year. I really would like to change some fundamental things and make it better than last year (although, realistically it won't take much). Call them resolutions, whatever. I'm an epic fail at keeping resolutions, so I'm just going to make a pledge to myself and my family. It's the same thing from year to year, but if it's not a "resolution" I might actually have a better chance at succeeding. These things are just common sense, and nearly everyone I know strives to improve their lives in the same exact areas. But, I feel if I actually say it out loud, it'll mean something more.

DIET: Yes, the old "new year new me". Yes, but no. I have not jumped on any diet bandwagon, or even been to the gym very much so far. But, I would like to do weekly meal planning, take my lunches to work, not go out to eat as often, and get to the gym regularly. That would go a long way toward accomplishing healthy eating, and also ties in with my 2nd pledge.

BUDGET: My reduction in pay has made a drastic difference in my bank account. As a result, I have to be very careful with what I do. Meal planning will allow me to sit and figure out a grocery list and coupons and all that (no, don't roll your eyes. I will *never* be one of those marathon coupon queens, but it's proven that you can save tons of money if you do it right). And, I want to get Steve to save as well. He's not very good at that and I would like to get him to try harder.

WORK: I have been in a constant state of "I Hate My Job" since September. I suppose that's not really fair, because I don't really hate my job, but it doesn't make me happy anymore. I do not look forward to going in because I know it'll be the same exact thing as yesterday. Hang new price changes. Count stuff. Scan in a vendor order or two. And tomorrow will be the same. And the day after. And the day after that. The things that I love to do, that I enjoy doing at work I am no longer allowed to do. So, I think it's time to find something else and finish the last chapter in this 10 year old book. I have applied for some new opportunities, including school. We shall see where this road will take me. And I will try to have a better attitude while I'm there. It's hard since our store is injured. We're collectively limping along, barely making it. I can honestly say I've never worked in a store with lower morale. I can only hope that this year improves that.

FAMILY: I love my family. I love Steve's family. I need to be close to people, and on the same hand, we need to make a concerted effort to see the family that we have here in town. My family is all far away (the closest being my dad, who's 2 hours away. It only gets worse from there), and as a result I think we should see Steve's family more often. We get complacent with our lives and our routine. Work, dinner, bed. We've got so many people close by that we love that we rarely see. And I don't know about anyone else, but I'd rather not wait until it's too late. Life is too short to live in a bubble. Oh, and I want to get pregnant again this year. Expanding our family and the love that we have. That's big on my list.

I think that's enough for now. I think that If we're able to work on all of those things, I will be in a much better place. Physically and emotionally.

So, here's to another New Year! Cheers!

Some new Sami-isms...

So Sami says things all the time that just crack me up. A couple weeks ago, she randomly started talking about Santa again. She came up to me and said, "Mama! My stocking was full to the TOP with toys and candy and stuff!" I smiled and nodded. Then, her eyes narrowed and she shook her head. "That Santa. He's so sneaky. He came in our house and we didn't even know it!" :hands on hips:

What do you even say to that? Hahaha.

Okay. This is the part where I warn you of some upcoming potty humor. But, she is 3, and stuff like this is not only funny, but apparently it is also perfectly acceptable conversation fodder. Consider yourself warned (but really, it's not that bad at all, haha).

S: Mama, do you know the difference between a fart, a toot, and a thoot?
M: (raising eyebrows and chuckling) No, I don't. Is there a difference?
S: Yes. (nodding emphatically) You know what a fart is. A toot is a kind of fart, but just louder.
M: Ooookay. So, what's a 'thoot'?
S: (giggles) A thoot is a kind of fart too.
M: So what makes it different from a fart or toot?
S: Umm....a thoot is....yucky.

At this point, I decided that this conversation was over, and promptly changed the subject. HAHAHAHA. What is that, the toddler version of a shart? I don't mean to laugh, but... yeah, I do. It's funny.

Happy Holidaze!

Hello out there? Remember me? :crickets chirping:

Okay, I know. I've been MIA. Since Thanksgiving. Yeah, yeah. Go ahead, say it. Slacker!! Red, you're a SLACKER!

But somehow, it feels like I haven't had a moment to sit down since November. Well, a three year old and a husband, a house and cat, and a full-time retail job? I've been busy. To say the least. But, things are slowing down and returning to normal. Thank God, I say! I have a serious love/hate relationship with the holidays. For real. I love Thanksgiving/Christmas/New Years. Love. To me, it's always meant getting together with family, good food, good times. Then, I grew up and got a job. In RETAIL (not the smartest thing I've ever done, but that's a whole different post for another day). At that point, I began to hate the holidays. People get mean and irrational. Work gets harder and you have to accomplish more with less time. Long hours, even longer weeks. For years I only got 4 days off in the entire month of December. This year was a little different. My change of position offered me more days off, and fewer hours at work. Yay! But, it was still hectic. But, now I can breathe. Here's a brief recap of our holiday season.

Thanksgiving: We had a wonderful time with Mike and Shell, Livi and Violet. I absolutely love having family dinners with them. The kids crack me up, and it makes my heart full. Dinner was at our house, and even though I had to work, Steve assembled a wonderful meal. He's a great cook. I think I'll keep him. :)

Christmas: I worked until 11 on Christmas Eve. Steve and Sami put out the cookies and milk for Santa, threw the Magic Reindeer Food outside, and put out the Santa Key. He said she was absolutely psyched for Santa to come! I got home from work and put out all the presents and filled the stockings, and put the breakfast bake together. We were in bed by 2 or so (ugh). I woke up at 8, very surprised since I'd fully expected to be poked in the forehead at 6:30! I came downstairs and made coffee, put the casserole in the oven, and even made cinnamon rolls. Nobody was awake! I sat down and enjoyed a cup of coffee, at which point I decided to wake everyone up. I dragged Steve out of bed, then we woke Sami up at 9:30. What alternate universe was I in that I had to wake my child up on Christmas morning! Haha! We opened presents, she was thrilled with everything. Then we had to get dressed and went over to Shell's parents house for dinner. We had a great time, laughing and telling stories with her family. Then, back to our house to open presents with the Mike and Shell, et al. THEN, over to Aunt Elaine's house for dinner with the rest of the Krauses. Finally, we got back home, and essentially collapsed in exhausted heaps. But we were happy, and our hearts and bellies were full.

New Years: This was a tough one for me. I had to work both NYE and NYD, and we had plans to go to a friend's house for a party. 2 hours away. I was so nervous about it since Sami would be staying at a mutual friend's house with her kids. I didn't want to drive all the way out there in potential bad weather, had no idea how Sami would react to us not being there in the morning, was unsure how many people I'd know, etc etc. As it turns out, the weather was fine (not so much on NYD, but we were mostly home by then), Sami had a blast, and we had a ton of fun. I can't remember the last time I stayed up drinking and playing euchre until 3am. Oh yeah, it was back in college. Ha! All was good. All that worry and complaining about nothing. So typical of me.

In a nutshell, that was our holiday season. We made it through, with little sleep but lots of fun and love.