holiday decorations

The living room in our house is 20×30 and has cathedral ceilings with these massive, substantial-looking dark wooden beams.  Our living room is also super ugly because we haven’t had the time, money, or inspiration to do much with it since we moved in just over a year ago. One thing I couldn’t stand about our house last Christmas was how tiny our skinny, 7′ tree looked in our giant room.  We were determined to get a 9 footer this year.  I also wanted to get all new decorations. We say this every year, with plans to raid Target the day after Christmas for markdowns but at that point I really don’t want to spend another dime, regardless how spectacular the deal.  The problem with choosing a theme for our tree is that I have to choose a theme for our tree.  I kind of decided against it.  I just want to buy ornaments that I like. That we like.  So I picked out some multi-color glittery unbreakable balls.  Theo picked out a Darth Vader.  Dexter picked out a Captain Hook.

Our theme is us.  Whatever we like.  Done.  Maybe we will be more sophisticated one day but it’s not looking good.  We have multi-colored lights, after all, and we like them.  So there.

Christmas card tree on the wall.  Since we have no other decorations there.  🙂 Why not go all out tacky this year?

Vintage Disney ornaments.

My pinterest-inspired (pinterest fail) hand Santas.

Our beast of a tree.  I’m desperately hoping I have a mantle to decorate before next Fall. And something besides a brass fireplace screen. And some better window treatments. And painted walls. Oh, I could go on for years.

Obligatory bokeh.

Vintage 12 days of Christmas bell decorations – painted by Ryan’s grandmother.

Looking in from the foyer.  Don’t mind the mess.  That’s just life happening.

Ceramic Santa & Reindeer, also painted by Ryan’s grandmother.

Vintage Felt Advent Calendar, made by Ryan’s mom. The boys LOVE choosing an ornament for the tree each day.  It’s become one of their favorite things about the holiday.

A few of my baby ornaments on the old tree (currently in our bedroom).

The tree in our room – just disregard that unfinished paint job.

A few decorations in the boys’ bathroom.

When we chose the color scheme for the boys’ bathroom with a sky blue paint on the walls to compliment the hot air balloon theme, I pictured this exact thing – a sweet snowman shower curtain we could use throughout the winter just for a change of scenery.

Light blue lights on a mini-tree.  I need to find some tiny snowman or snowflake ornaments for it.

Oh, and Dexter talking to Buzz.

missing my dad.

I have felt on the verge of tears for a few days, unable to really pinpoint why.  Just on edge – emotions running high.  I thought it was just exhaustion. The weather. The holiday rush and stress.  Finding that perfect gift for each of 15+ people on our list. And the money for that perfect gift.  My dirty house eating away at me, because everyone in it has been sick and I haven’t had time to do the dishes, let alone dust.  Not getting to go visit my family last weekend because of the illness. Plans getting cancelled left and right because of snow. Or sickness. The weight of this time of year. The disappointment of everything that’s gone wrong recently. The changes that have happened this year in our family and longing for the way it used to be. Always questioning if I am doing the right thing, if I am parenting the best way I can, if I’m meeting everyone’s expectations. My own expectations.  Relationships that have changed or gone away. Friends that have changed or gone away.  I miss blogging regularly but don’t even know what to say anymore.  And then there’s winter.  Stupid, stupid winter. Not running or exercising because I can’t find the time. Fear of failure. The boys crying at drop off. Again.

Tonight, Theo was asleep on the couch by 6:30 (not feeling well – AGAIN). Dex passed out as soon as I put him in bed. Ryan asleep by 7:15 (not feeling well).  By 9pm I couldn’t hold back anymore and the big, hot, stupid, salty tears were pouring down my face. For no reason, for every reason.  I felt the need to see my dad, so I walked around the house looking for a picture of him.  Sat here, staring at him. He would have been 62 today, if pancreatic cancer hadn’t stolen him from me over 6 years ago.  I can’t remember how long it’s been since I cried over my dad but now I can’t stop.  I miss him.  So.  Much.  So much has happened and my life has changed in so many ways since the last time I sat down and talked to him.  I wish I could see his hands.  Be on the receiving end of one of his big hugs.  Just to hear him say he loves me one more time.  It feels good to let it out.  Now I just want to feel better and get on with these happy freaking holidays.


winter/fall family pics

I’ve been waiting to share the photos that my very best friend took of us because I wanted to save them for our Christmas card – I’m weird like that.  Since I’ve gotten most of my cards out, I can’t wait any longer!

My best friend and her girlfriend live in Nashville, TN and are very much a part of our family. I’m lucky that my BFF is a trauma ER nurse with a history in peds, as well as a talented photographer.  She comes in very handy. 🙂  If only she lived closer.

When she offered to take our family pictures, I was elated. And nervous! What?  I don’t know.  I don’t know how to pick out clothes…for 4 people.  I didn’t know if the boys would smile. The weather was super crappy that day.  With all that being said – this lady is a magic maker! I love what she was able to capture. Okay, enough talking!

So many faves:

And, our 2013 Christmas card: 
A big thanks to my best friend for reminding me that I’m pretty lucky to be surrounded by 3 of the cutest dudes in town.