Home for the Holidays

It is so easy and wonderful to get caught up in the chaos of Christmas. So many presents to give, so many places to go, so many foods to eat, so many lights to see. I love this holiday on my own, but Story’s excitement in going to my parents’ house and spending time with her grandparents and aunts is contagious. As a child, the wonder of Christmas could sustain me for weeks, long after the decorations came down and the candy was gone. Now, as an adult, the aftermath is an immediate letdown. The decorations come down, the pine needles are vacuumed up, and work and regular life take over again.

It is two days after Christmas, and this morning, I had already begun to create the post-holiday to-do list in my mind. We had one more get-together to attend, and then, as much as I hated it, I had to seriously think about getting back to work. My dad’s family doesn’t gather often, usually only once a year, if schedules allow. This year, we met for dinner and good conversation. It’s always nice to see them. We aren’t what you would call close, but we all genuinely like each other and are interested in each other’s lives, so it is always a pleasant experience.

This year was different.

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You’re Doing Okay, Mom

Each maternity leave, there was one commercial that would send me to tears instantly. The first time, it was a commercial that reminded me that you only have a baby for one year. Through the sleepless nights and unfamiliar amount of stress, it tore me out of my narrow focus of the day to day and forced me to realize that this time was incredibly short. And I knew then exactly how much I would miss it. (more…)

Paper Plate Angels

Whether your kids are home for winter break and you’re desperate for an activity or you think your home just isn’t quite Christmasy enough, this craft is for you! Fair warning: this craft includes glitter, so it can get rather messy. I like to put a large piece of paper under the craft so that when (not if) all that glitter scatters, it lands on the paper. After all is done, pick up two edges of the paper, making a little trough, and pour the glitter back into the bottle. Less mess and no waste!

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White Chocolate Dipped Pretzels

White Chocolate Dipped Pretzels on the cookie sheetI’m excited about these. They are delicious, but then, I’ve always known that. Each Christmas, there is at least one get-together at which someone has these proudly displayed on their spread, and I park myself by them trying to be discreet about how many I’m eating. Not only are they delicious, they are also cute. Pinterest worthy. My treats never turned out like those. I had full dessert envy. (more…)