Hi there.
This is me...a happy wife, mom to three awesome boys, teacher to the aforementioned boys (we homeschool), chauffeur to karate, archery and swim team practices, scrapbooker and founder of the Good Grief Blog.
Life is good.



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Four on Friday

Just checking in as we're finishing up this first week of 2017...

1. Checking plenty of things off the to do list this week...things like thank you notes, scheduling our annual appointment with the accountant, labeling this year's ornaments before they get put away (probably next week), and other pesky household things. Among our household things, Nathan helped me reorganize our entry area (from the garage into the house). We moved the hooks, put up some shelves, and rearranged where we keep things. It's still not ideal, but it makes me feel so much better. (Seriously, my next house is going to have a whole different entry way situation...one that actually makes sense and doesn't cause everyone to trip over each other coming through the door.)

2. Another thing I did was finally start and finish a Christmas scrapbook/album I've been wanting to put together for years. (A couple years ago I even sketched out exactly what would go on each page and gathered all the materials. And then it sat on my desk for years, lol.) It's nothing fancy (at all!) but it's a single place with our holiday cards, letters, family photos and Santa photos for each year since we got married. Whew.

3. Over the weekend, we started noticing that Micah was squinting a bit at the computer screen. After some informal "tests" on our part (including trying out all the different glasses in the house, lol), we decided Micah probably needs glasses. Fortunately, we were able to take advantage of a cancellation and get him in to see our optometrist on Wednesday morning. And it turns out that Micah wasn't able to escape the "eleven year old curse" (so named by him because the other four of us here all began wearing glasses at about age eleven). ;) When Micah got a pass at his eye appointment in August, he thought he'd made it, lol. 

Anyhow, his glasses are ordered...should be here next week-ish. 

In case you're curious, the decision making process for Micah is entertaining and distinctly different from his brothers...and takes a good bit longer, lol. He wanted frames 

  • that weren't like either of his brothers (whose frames, for the record, are fairly similar in shape and style)...
  • didn't want blue or black (for the same reasons)...
  • wanted the frames to be either hardly visible or very noticeable...
  • was perturbed to discover that he can't wear a good portion of frames because he needs the nose pieces...
  • was more perturbed to discover that color choices for boys/men are distinctly lacking compared to the color choices for girls/women...
  • and stubbornly refused to believe me when I tried to explain that there's a reason both of his brothers have frames that are the same shape and that that same reason held true for him, being as he kinda looks like his brothers, lol. 

In the end, after trying on most of the frames in the office, he picked a pair. (Each brother tried on maybe two pairs of glasses before picking, since I know you were wondering, lol.) I'll post a picture when they're here and you can tell me if he succeeded in his wish list. ;) 

4. Yesterday, Micah had three friends over. They had a fabulous time playing and talking and playing some more. Bravely, for about an hour, they bundled up and headed outside to make snow forts and have a snowball fight:

It was probably about 10 degrees. They assured me they were fine...as I pressed extra hats and gloves on them...and they seemed to have a grand time. They also, though, came back inside declaring that they couldn't feel certain body parts, lol, but warmed right up with some hot cocoa. :) 

(On the plus side, 10 degrees is warmer than it was this morning. When I headed to boot camp, it was about -20.)

And that's some of what's been happening around here...



Twenty years. That's 7305 days. That's a lot of days, people. 

As of today, Nathan and I have been married that many days...that many years. I continue to be so very blessed. He is my partner, my provider, my protector, my heart. We've definitely had some years that were tougher than others, but we've weathered them together and learned together and grown together...and there's no one else I'd rather have by my side.

As usual, we aren't celebrating our anniversary tonight, as New Year's Eve gets too crazy. ;) And we sadly aren't in a financial position to take that Mediterranean cruise I've been angling for for awhile, lol. Instead, responsibly, we simply enjoyed an afternoon and evening together on Thursday...some walking around Old Town, plenty of talking and holding hands, dinner at a new-to-us restaurant. Here's us in Old Town Square warming up near one of the outdoor fires:

And then we came home to an anniversary miracle:

Yes, this is Holly. Sadly, Holly's internal light show hadn't been working. She was the floor model at Home Depot (one of the last ones in this part of Colorado) and we didn't discover the lights weren't working until it was too late to take her back right away (given Christmas and all). Nathan looked at the system but decided there was no fixing her. I was debating whether to try to find another store that might still have one that I could exchange for. 

But, then we came home Thursday night and LOOK! Her lights started working. We can't figure out why. I'm going to believe that she wanted to recognize how awesome we are to be celebrating twenty years. :)

Yesterday night, I surprised Nathan with the dvd from our wedding. Apparently, someone took a video at our wedding (I have no recollection who, btw...please tell me if you know!), and I had it converted from VHS earlier this year. Together with the boys, we watched it for the first time ever. It was lovely to see all the family and friends who were able to make it (amidst a winter storm that closed off all the roads around my hometown, meaning that about half of our rsvp's weren't able to make it)...and especially meaningful to see the faces no longer with us.

Beyond that, it was entertaining to see all the things I didn't really remember. (I was pretty sick...had had cortisone shots and was on codeine...kept a water bottle at the kneeler with me at the alter...and honestly don't remember much, lol.) Also, if you were at our wedding and got sick shortly thereafter, I apologize. I seriously wasn't altogether with it and didn't think about pesky things like germs...as I was shaking almost every single person's hand or giving them a hug, lol. And, we'd forgotten that the church's heat had gone out--as we watched people huddling in their winter coats and remembered that I was actually wearing long johns beneath my wedding dress. ;) The boys particularly got a kick out of Nathan's beard and huge glasses, lol.

That brings us to today...our actual anniversary. Today was spent mostly tackling the to do list (and being pretty darn productive, actually, yay!). Amid all that, I gave Nathan one last gift...a small album I made for our anniversary...with a photo for each year of our marriage and a list of some of the main memories from each year. Here are the photos:

(Sorry, I can't figure out how to change the order so that it would go from earlier years to recent as I'd prefer...instead it's going from recent back to 1996. Nor can I figure out how to not make it crop the vertical photos weird. It's actually the first time I've ever used the slideshow feature here, lol. If you want to see the actual pictures, they're in a gallery over on the left...or click "Galleries" under "Stuff I've Made" then select "Twenty Years.")

In looking through it, we were both reminded that...even though sometimes it feels like all we're accomplishing is getting through each day (and sometimes not even that, lol)...we're actually having such a beautiful life--full of adventures and moments and lessons and laughter. So very blessed.

Here's to the next twenty years... 



Once upon a time, carrying on a lovely tradition that my mom started when I was a kid (that I loved!), I got boys Christmas pajamas every year, and they opened them on Christmas Eve and wore them that night.

And then boys got older and decided they didn't like wearing pajamas and didn't want Christmas pajamas.

And I was sad.

But then I decided to tweak the tradition and start getting the boys a shirt that represented each of them and/or their year instead of pajamas. (I'm pretty sure I started this in 2013.)

And this is what we ended up with this year for shirts:

Asher's is Iron Man, whom he still thinks is fabulous. Noah's is from Smite, a computer game that he's spent hours (and hours and hours) playing this past year. And Micah really wanted an ugly Christmas sweater and is seriously thrilled with his vomiting unicorn. :) (It's difficult to tell in this picture, but the unicorn and vomit are both glittery threads so are shiny.)

And now you know. ;) 


Happy Holidays to all!

Just popping in this morning to wish you all a beautiful and family-filled day! Hope you manage to stay warm (it's started snowing here again--which is fine...and we're under a high wind warning--which is not as fine, as I dislike wind and it means I had to deflate my lovely inflatables, lol).

And, just for the record, my code this year was awesome. No one even came close to breaking it. ;) 

Each package had two numbers (separated by a semi-colon) and one or two letters. From the two numbers, you needed to add the numbers in the hundreds and tens column. If that sum was divisible by 7, it was Asher's...divisible by 8, it was Noah's...or ended in 5, it was Micah's. (I started out with divisible by 5 but then neglected to pay attention and used sums for the older two that were also divisible by five, so changed it.) The letters meant nothing...except that if there was an N it was from Noah and an A meant from Asher. (Micah wrapped his own gifts this year.)

(So, for instance, in the package above...add 28 and 00. That equals 28. Which is divisible by 7. So this is for Asher. No N, so it's from parents.)

Bwahaahaaa. ;)

I'll end with a version of our holiday card photo:

From our family to yours... 

(PS For whatever reason, the post office has returned a few of the cards I mailed earlier in the week...with no indication that they're addressed wrong or have insufficient postage or anything. It looks like they may have gone through the machine backward or something and thus been delivered to our return address (which was on the back). I'll try to mail them again tomorrow. Sorry.)


Ridiculously happy

So. Look what Nathan just brought home...

Yesterday, Home Depot's inflatables went on sale! This beauty wasn't available online but our local store had one left...the floor model. Hooray!! And now our yard looks like this:

And I am ridiculously happy about it. ;) 

Merry Christmas Eve, y'all!

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