until Winter Break

A little decking of the halls and then off she goes, back to school.

It’s always sad when someone leaves home, unless they are simply going around the corner and will return in a few minutes with ice cream sandwiches. ~ Lemony Snicket

Miss her already. But it’s only 18 days until Winter Break. Perhaps I shall save some more decking for her to do then; and perhaps she will return with some ice cream sandwiches.


letting it rain

The best thing one can do when it’s raining is to let it rain ~ Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

It rained today. Us thirsty folk here in California get very excited when it rains these days because of the extended severe drought so we do silly things like celebrate…because it’s raining!!!

It rained today, So why not put up one of The Big Top Christmas trees?

And so I did.

And if that isn’t reason enough, Jodie is coming home for Thanksgiving tonight.


taken down, packed up, like a boss

It’s official. The kids are back to school…hurray, hurray, hurray. The final, frenzied dance competition season is just about to begin. The Rockefeller Christmas Tree is officially down and being milled and readied for “green lumber” for Habitat for Humanity.And, The Big Top Christmas Crazy is down and packed away for another year. Yes, including the Big Tree…unlike last year, when it stayed up until the beginning of March because me have elves to help pack this holiday crazy up and put away?

Oh honey, please! I have help putting this all away like I have help putting it all up. They are clowns, not elves, living here under the Big Top.

So with a burst of energy and the desire to beat my personal best with my new Fitbit, I got all of it, including the big tree, packed up in one afternoon.

Like a boss!

Oh and I logged over 20,000 steps.

Again, like a boss!

Meanwhile, poor Zelda is mourning the fact that I packed away all of her fabulous toys. I forgot how much kitty cats love the Christmas crazy.


magical still

Presents wrapped and ready under the tree.

Gingerbread house constructed.

Without this guy’s help.

Because these elves pretty much told him he couldn’t help if he was going to act like a foreman…true story.

Then it was time to get nestled all snug in beds because, you know, Christmas Day won’t come until morning.

It’s magical, still!“, he declared.

Yeah it is.

Thank you again, lovely Aimee, for the inspiration.

But that which we discover Christmas morning is not what makes it magical. No, it’s the kisses

and hugs.


Laughter, so much laughter.

Family time and so much more.

That’s what makes Christmas magical still.


play it again: ornaments

After an encounter yesterday at the dance studio with another child demanding to know “What’s wrong with him?”, referring to my son patiently waiting for his sister to be done with her dance rehearsal, I found myself considering two things: a- to take the little hellion darling out and teach her a thing or two about grace and manners because clearly someone else isn’t; b- try to be patient with the little hellion darling even if she is behaving horribly rude to my child. I chose “b” and I won’t lie, it was excruciatingly difficult until this morning when I discovered that the little hellion darling is my daughter’s buddy on the competition team. Oh you sweet little girl…bless your darling, little heart! Yes, I just said that in my best Southern accent. In all seriousness, I do hope that she will (like the rest of Jodie’s team and everyone else at the studio has) come to appreciate just how awesome and magical Jodie’s little brother is.

This post was originally published December 1, 2011.

a paragraph by Daniel, third grade:

Today I hung my Christmas ornaments on the Christmas tree. I have twenty six ornaments. Mom keeps them in a box for me. My favorite is an airplane.

Every year for Christmas I give each of the kids an ornament to add to their own collection that someday they can take for their very own Christmas tree in their own home. Added to that collection are other ornaments they have received as gifts and ornaments they have made through the years. For Christmas 2008, I gave Daniel an airplane ornament to remember his very first ride on an airplane. It was magical, very magical.

At school every week he is expected to write a paragraph of three or more sentences about any subject that he wants to write about. He pretty much always struggles with coming up with a topic…and then sentences. Sorry, but writing definitely does not come to him easily like math does for him! But this week, after hanging his ornaments on the tree, he had no trouble at all deciding what he wanted to write about.  Just like his first ride on an airplane, it was magical watching him write this paragraph. Almost as magical as it was to watch him admire and remember all twenty six ornaments that belong to him…magical! Almost as magical as he is.


He is!