farewell, 2010

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I had started my annual year-in-review and annual year in pictures posts, but I didn’t get a chance to finish them. I’ve actually been pretty sick these last two days, with a weird stomach thing that turned into an unkillable migraine and I couldn’t stop throwing up. (It’s like when I was pregnant! Except this time I can’t say it will all be worth it! Bleh.) Paul took me to urgent care this morning, and after 2 1/2 hours in the waiting room, with people still on the waiting list in front of me, I decided just to leave. I tried to sleep it off some more, but a few hours later I had Paul take me to the emergency room. I waited maybe 5 minutes, and was seen. They gave me a cocktail of drugs for the headache and the vomiting, and I started feeling much, much better. I came home, slept some more, and when I woke up I ate for the first time since Wednesday night! It felt so good to have an appetite again!

Anyways, I hope 2011 is better than 2010 has ended. :-) I will hopefully get my year-in-review up tomorrow! Until then, Happy New Year!!

I’m dreaming of a white Christmas!

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This year we decided to stay in town for Christmas. We want a chance to make our own memories, and we want Savannah to have some memories of Christmas in our house. We’ll still go be with family in Orlando, just not every year.

I have to admit, I’m glad that we chose *this* year, because we got a white Christmas here in Atlanta!! It’s my first white Christmas, and it’s the first time Atlanta has seen any measurable accumulation since 1882 (which was exactly 100 years and 1 day before I was born)! I had heard rumors of “wintery weather” but I didn’t pay attention, so I was really surprised when it snowed. And I was even more surprised when it was still around when I woke up the next morning! Some pictures:


Snow on the roof

White Christmas

While it was cold outside, it was nice and cozy inside:
Warm and cozy inside

After Savannah went to bed on Christmas Eve, we finally finished cleaning. Here is the living room, all decorated:
Living room

And the dining room:
Dining room set for Christmas dinner

Christmas dinner with our friends Jessica and Rodrigo:
Christmas guests

We enjoyed celebrating with their 2 month old daughter, Vera:
Vera, two months old

Savannah slept through Christmas dinner, and woke up at the tail end. She looks like she’s still waking up:

I had a lot of fun decorating the table. I wanted to get matching dishes, but I could only find dinner plates in the pattern I liked, so I ended up with a more eclectic collection. It turned out nicely, I thought. A few Christmas table accents:
Place setting

Snowmen salt & pepper shakers

Christmas candle

merry christmas!

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From our house to yours… here is the Christmas card we sent out:

“While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.” Luke 2:7

“He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God. The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” John 1:11-14

the day I finally got motivation to clean

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All this week I haven’t felt well which has made it hard to get motivated to clean the house for our guests on Christmas Day! But today, the day before Christmas Eve, it all came together.

Paul is off work for a few days. It’s nice to have him on vacation with no travel plans. He watched Savannah for me while I ran some errands this morning. I got the final part of his present, picked up a gift card, and mailed the last two Cheistmas cards.

Oh yes, the Christmas cards. Earlier this week I emailed our annual Christmas letter to everyone I thought would be interested. I had a lot of fun designing it, knowing that I didn’t have to worry about printing limitations. I included a page of pictures from this past year which was fun too. Then I had our Christmas cards printed at Walgreens and mailed them to a select few. This ended up being a good compromise, especially because we don’t have a printer so I was able to get by with just handwriting the cards. I ran by the post office for stamps yesterday (the 22nd) and got the cards in the mail that evening.

Back to today. I got a bad headache around lunch and had to lay down. Poor Paul got stuck with Baby Duty again, for which I was grateful. He went Christmas shopping, and when he got back I made a list of the food for Saturday and we left again for Kroger. I was already starting to feel better, and getting out was good.

After coming home, Paul made dinner and I was finally bit by the cleaning motivational bug. I started with the dining room and tried to do a thorough job, pulling furniture away from walls to get all the cat hair. The table is now set for Saturday and it looks so pretty! I’ll have to take a picture.

I didn’t want to stop to eat, so Paul started on the living room which is really the worst of all the rooms. He made a pretty good dent before I ran out of steam and put Savannah to bed and then ate dinner. I started some laundry (haven’t done it in a while – we were getting desperate!) and we watched the Leverage episodes from last Sunday. 

I was going up go to bed (it was about 2am) but then I remembered that tomorrow is trash day. I’m all mixed up because of Paul being off work today. We had several bags full because of all the cleaning and sorting, so I wanted to make sure not to forget. I decided while I was at it to clean out the fridge. It needed it! I also did a sweep of the house to look for anything that needed thrown out and hadn’t found its way to a trash can yet. Our house looks so much better!

It’s now after 4:30am and I’m just now crawling to bed. I’m excited because it’s technically Christmas Eve! Tomorrow is more cleaning, a few more loads of laundry, and preliminary cooking. And of course, my favorite part – the evening Christmas candlelight service! I am so excited!

Merry Christmas Eve! 

gah, time is passing too quickly!

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So my little jaunt to Orlando last week kinda messed me up. It was the only time we could go, working around both my and Beth’s schedules, but now I’m scrambling to catch up!

I mentioned before that I was volunteering with a ministry to help coordinate some of the presents for local kids. One part of this was getting sponsors from our church – making an “angel tree” and setting it up at our church and making sure all the lines of communication were open about it. Last Sunday (as in, the 12th) all the presents were due. I was overwhelmed by the outpouring of generosity by the members of our church! I brought all the gifts home and cataloged them on a spreadsheet to make sure each child was covered. (The goal was for each child to get 3 pieces of clothing and 3 toys/fun things.) I was expecting to have to fill in a bunch of holes, but I really didn’t have to. There were 84 gifts (14 children) total. I had ambitious plans to wrap them all, but I ran out of steam after 48 presents. It was hard because Savannah kept making it very difficult to wrap presents. It was just easier to wait until she was sleeping, which didn’t leave much time!

On Tuesday I had a very busy day planned, as I had to drop all the presents off at a church about 30 minutes away, and also get ready for my trip which I was leaving the next day. Monday night I was rereading the instructions and realized I needed to print a form to accompany all the gifts. Oops! Since we don’t have a printer, I knew I had to run to Kinko’s the next day and print it quickly. Savannah’s PT appointment was at 10 the next morning, so I didn’t have much time.

It seemed that everything went wrong Tuesday morning. I was late leaving, forgot my wallet and had to go back and get it, Kinko’s machines weren’t working right, the copier ran out of paper, realized I forgot to bring breakfast for Savannah, etc. I made it on time to physical therapy, only to have Savannah be in a TERRIBLE mood. She spent the whole hour crying and reaching for me, and I had to go sit in the waiting room. I got a last minute email asking me to pick up a gift to be dropped off along with all the other ministry gifts. So I headed from the PT to another part of the city, where I found out that someone had come by earlier and gotten the gift. So I got back in the car and went on to the church where I dropped off all the gifts. Things started getting better here on out – I stopped by the vet on the way home and got all of Lewis and Ebony’s records (which I accidentally left here when I went to Orlando, oh well). I got home and Savannah refused to nap, which actually turned out fine because a little girl from our church came over to watch Savannah for me while I did some major cleaning. (That was so wonderful!) However, by the time Paul got home I was exhausted and not at all packed.

Then we were in Orlando for the next three days. Beth stayed the night here on Friday night, and Saturday after she left I realized I had an hour to shower, get dressed, and get to the party for the above ministry. I kinda melted – too many people, too many crazy days – and poor Paul took my place. I was sad that I failed on that commitment. I am still bad at knowing how much I can handle before I need to start saying no. Saturday night our church had a Posada, and I was fresh and ready for that (which we enjoyed).

Now I’m shifting my focus to Christmas!! The past two days I’ve gotten our tree up and mostly decorated. I put all the presents underneath it. I just now finished our Christmas letter, and now I’m trying to figure out what I should tackle next. My to-do list is long and mostly consists of cleaning the house at this point. Our downstairs is horribly messy and it needs to be spic and span before our guests come over on Saturday!

Also there’s this thing called Christmas dinner I need to make for the first time. Hmm… Order in, anyone? :-)

Okay, trying to focus on the Reason for the Season and not letting myself get too stressed. :-) But if you’re wondering why the Christmas card is late… then you know why!