This Thanksgiving week was filled with ups and downs. It started with a punch to the gut. After a possible exposure situation, we weren’t able to be with my side of the family for Thanksgiving. It was very last minute. I cried, but the worst part was holding Hailey as she cried. It’s both our favorite weeks of the year, and in a year that we need family more than ever, it stung a little extra.
After a big fat pity session, we rallied. The four of us played Kubb, a new yard game David recently made pieces for in his workshop, a lot of Settlers of Catan (on super sale at Walmart today!), and picked up sushi for dinner since I had done such a thorough job of cleaning out the fridge. Oh, and wine. There was wine for us and Zevia for the kids as we licked our wounds and tried to make the best of the last minute switch.
I highly recommend these adorable gnome window clings! So cute and festive, easy for kids to put up and move around.
We spent the next few days family focused. We hiked five miles at Stone Mountain Park (and cut it close to dark so the girls really had to haul booty the last two miles; we were super proud of them). We had our first fire of the season. We watched Christmas movies and the parade. We made a Thanksgiving meal for the four of us, naming the last minute chicken we picked up “Turkey” so we could say we had turkey for Thanksgiving.
We also realized our big, deep freezer was unplugged and the meat inside of it (luckily there wasn’t too much) had spoiled. So we had to toss and clean that situation on Thanksgiving day. If you don’t laugh, you’ll cry…
Thankfully we were able to be together with Mema and Grandpa and David’s brother and crew for a couple days over the weekend. The weather gods smiled on us and we were able to play a lot of Kubb, roast hotdogs and marshmallows over a fire, go for long walks, and play a lot of Samba, too. The girls loved playing with their cousin (and their lab puppy) and Kaitlyn lost a front tooth during the time together, too. Lucky for her, the Tooth Fairy has excellent tracking skills and was able to find her in South Carolina.
We arrived home yesterday and did the regular routine- get through laundry, workout, cook dinner (fish tacos!), search for Star (our elf has arrived and the girls love it!) and put up a few more twinkling fairy lights, which really are the best holiday bang for your buck. I’ve added them to the garland on my mantle, behind our Christmas card display, and as a curtain. We are getting our tree later this week, then I’ll post some pictures!
This is the busy season for blogging. It’s when more people shop through affiliate links and companies pay top dollar for ads. It’s a time when I’m spending a lot too, on gifts and giving, yes, but decorations really add up too, don’t they? It’s tempting to work my tail off to maximize good stuff to share with y’all and thus, profit, too. But I’ll be honest, I don’t think I have it in me this year.
After this past week especially, I am feeling the need to take some pressure off myself. My main focus is the joy and connection within our four walls at home. I’m making space for board games by the fire and baking cookies with the kids (which we all know takes twice as long). I’m prioritizing family hikes, warm baths, and couch snuggles. In between those, I want to keep some schooling rolling too, even though we “school light” (mostly lang arts and math) during December.
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Since every decision (choice) involves an incision (saying no to something else), I’m lightening up the pressure I put on myself to keep blog content regular. Maybe I’ll post about the Christmas ornaments my Nannie taught us to make (I really want to!), but maybe I won’t get to it. Maybe I’ll stop in more with stream of consciousness posts; maybe I won’t. Grief has me on a rollercoaster of sometimes wanting to share everything and connect and other times wanting to become very private just to block out others’ opinions and judgements for a while. I never really know what direction it will jerk me in.
Today seems to be the former (I’m looking at you, 1030 word count post…), and I really enjoy chatting with you this way. While I know you aren’t asking for an explanation, it feels good to me to be able to give you one as to why I might be showing up here a lot or not as much.
I am curious though, while we’re on the subject- how do you read blogs? Do you check in directly to see if there is new content? Use a service like Feedly? Wait until I share a link of social? Wait for the newsletter? If you could let me know how you follow along, it would be super helpful to me.
To wrap things up, I hope you’ve been well. I hope you’re making cozy memories and cherishing your blessings. If you’re doing that while also juggling a whole lot of tough emotions from loss or unmet expectations, I see you. I feel you. I don’t really have any advice for you, but I can share what I’m doing, which is to cry when it hurts, but then to look around and pick out all the incredible things I have to be grateful for.
The best tip I’ve learned? Be specific! Instead of saying “I’m grateful for my family,” pick something from that day. For example “I’m grateful that my girls played Legos together for over an hour, clad in new Christmas pajamas.” Because is there anything better than matching Christmas pajamas? I think not.
Ok, signing off. Happy Monday, friends!