Deep Thoughts for 2014

We took an informal survey at the house this year and we all decided that 2014 was an ok year. It wasn't anything flash but it wasn't horrible either. It was just a year. To be fair, 2014 came on the heels of two big years, 2012 was the arrival of the chickens and 2013 was the TV show so I think it is ok to be a year that was just a year. That being said, I'd like to go ahead and let 2015 know in advance what my expectations are for the year. 

  • I want laughter, lots of it and sometimes I want so much laughter that my stomach hurts
  • I want to be done with diapers (until I am a grandmother - please let that be at least 15-20 years from now)
  • I want to run more or if I am getting too old for running then at least walk the dog more
  • I want to figure out what I want to be when I grow up
  • I want to spend time at the beach or at least a family vacation
  • I want to be better at balancing family, work, and me time
  • I want to stop caring about those that don't care about me
  • I want to spend time with those that matter
  • I want to remember to unplug every now and again
  • I want a year when no friends go through divorce, I know this is a tough one but just in case someone does decide to split then I want the energy to be the a good friend because divorce is tough stuff 
  • I want more date nights (preferably with Rick) 

I am sure I have more things but I think that is a good start for 2015.

Thanks 2014. It wasn't always easy, there were some tears, some struggles, some mommy dearest moments, lots of thoughts spinning in my head, lots of draining moments but there was also laughter, some well-needed family time, some letting go of people and things, and overall I think it was a year of being content with life and where I am at.


The Holidays

The two weeks of break was uneventful and relaxing. I am always torn with needing to have tons of activities planned versus just letting things happen. We somehow managed to have a good mix for the holidays this year although the boys have 2 more days of freedom and Rick and I may be ready for those two days to be over.

I am working on my Deep Thoughts for 2014 but for now I share photos from the month including our first gingerbread house party, Christmas, and the girl's 3rd birthday.


Holiday Cards

There are so many things I love about Christmas - decorating the tree, Christmas music, making and eating cookies...oh the list goes on but one of my all time favorite, although dying tradition, is the Christmas card. I love sending them as much as I love getting them. It is often the one time in this hectic world that I get to connect in a non-social media way with those that are important to me.

This year for fun (or because I am just that odd), I organized my cards by state just to see exactly where they all go. Get ready if you live in any of these states, you may be getting a card from me!

Arizona - 1
Arkansas - 2
California - 1
Colorado - 2
Florida - 1
Indiana - 1
Illinois - 2
Kentucky - 1
Louisiana - 1
Massachusetts - 1
Montana - 4
Nebraska - 3
New York - 3
Oklahoma - 1
Oregon - 1
Texas - 28
Washington - 10

We seem light on the east coast and we barely touch the central or the south but 17 out of 25 States seems impressive to me.

I have a few more cards to get out and a few left-over so if you want one speak now!

School is out on Friday and I am officially off this Thursday through to the 29th. I am looking forward to relaxing. I am officially done shopping but for a few minor things and now get to focus on baking and the most anticipated event (outside of  Christmas morning) pierogi making.


30, 61

In 30 days the girls turn 3 and in 61 days I turn 40.
Time is flying by.

Aubrey was home for Thanksgiving break and used the chickens as models for one of her photo class projects. She has been sending a few each day.



I am often asked if the chickens personalities are different. This photo captures the difference better than words.

Lulu in her Cinderella dress and Kat in her jeans.


We have the entire week off this year for Thanksgiving. Much to JT's chagrin we are not spending it on some incredible holiday adventure at the beach or in Italy.

I've spent the last few days driving Rick insane cataloging how we have spent the last 17 Thanksgivings to prove my point that this is in fact the first year we are spending it without company, either friends or family. I have to admit it feels a bit odd but have no fear we still have a few days and Rick is always ready for guests. We've had a lot of turkey together.

We will be picking up some old traditions and starting a new one this year. The most important old tradition to kick-off the holiday is the Macy Day Parade. Zach and I love it the most so he will no doubt be my first choice for the day when I get to see it in person. We will ignore the Black Friday crowd and head to our favorite day after Thanksgiving store - Half Price Books -  followed by some hamburgers at Dan's.  The Mitchell ladies will head over Friday for gingerbread houses. We have inconsistently made gingerbread houses throughout the years. We had such fun doing it as part of Thanksgiving weekend last year at Donna's that it was unanimously voted to add it to our weekend celebrations . On Saturday we plan to see the Chuy's parade downtown, which we have missed the passed few years.Of course there will be lots of catching up on our shows. JT and I are woefully behind on Arrow so we need to get caught up and a Thanksgiving can't pass without Talladega Nights. Rick and I are also negotiating a holiday viewing of the Godfather trilogy although this is probably going to take us through Christmas.

Keeping with tradition, I tortured the kids yesterday with a quick photo shoot for Christmas cards. It ended in a bit of an epic fail because I neglected to notice the giant white railing that separates the cuteness of the moment. I begged them to go out again but without much to offer in the way of bribery, I managed to pull off a card with what I had but here are a few previews of the attempts.

That is KitKat giving shouting out!

The boys started a dance party.


All Was Spooky

After months of spooky talk and visiting spooky stores, Halloween seems like distant memory. And sadly it is only a memory because my phone broke and I lost all photos from Halloween until the day it broke. Everyone misses out on the incredible pumpkin that JT carved and some other cuteness that I took while we were out in the hood but I do have a few shots.

 Lulu helping JT
 The girls with some friends before the big night. Kit Kat is Ariel and Lulu was Cinderella.

Zach was a zombie hunter and JT was a bat with these cool foam wings that you can't really see.