Today I have been thinking about last year’s resolutions. I did manage to finish reading through my Bible, and I did indeed start to sew for Sew Much Comfort (but I am far from a prolific seamstress, I’ve done about 6 pairs of boxers and 2 pairs of athletic shorts total which is pretty sad for a whole year).
Of course there are a few that I didn’t ever get to. I never did run another big road race (the small 5K I just did recently was the only one). I still have yet to master the art of saying no and being more assertive instead of avoiding conflict. A lifelong goal, that one.
However, of the things I have done, I think I am the proudest of my 365days project. Even though I missed some days, especially when we moved back in May, I did continue throughout the year. Since I chose a leap year, I plan to take photos for both today and tomorrow to finish it out. It’s been such a rewarding experience but in truth, I will enjoy it being over, too. There were many times that it felt like a chore, particularly when I would get out of bed because I had forgotten to take my picture for the day. But for some strange reason I just couldn’t bring myself to give it up. I’m grateful I did not. I’ve learned more than I ever thought I would know about how to use the camera and it sounds cheesy, but it really has changed the way I look at the world around me.
The trouble is I can’t think of any great resolutions for the coming year. I do have some small goals, but nothing that will require the time and energy like 365 did (it’s probably a good thing that I didn’t realize how much it would require at the time).
So I’ll think on it, and if I come up with anything good I’ll post them tomorrow. Happy New Year!!
While we were on our detour in South Carolina I made dh stop at one of my favorite spots that I never got to photograph while we lived there, the Church of the Holy Cross. It was a cloudy, rainy day that wasn’t all that conducive to great picture taking but I was glad that I finally got a chance to take some shots of it.
It is one of the oldest remaining examples of “Pise de Terre” or rammed earth construction in the United States. Sadly the building suffered extensive termite damage and was closed during the time we lived nearby. It is still not fully repaired but is supposed to open in the fall of next year. I may have to go back just so that I can see the beautiful stained glass windows (you can see photos of them here)
I was surprised to find the tomb of Joel Poinsett, who famously introduced the poinsettia to the United States.
When I got home I found that my poinsettia from last year had rebloomed
How’s that for an interesting coincidence?
Published December 30, 2008
Tags: home, military life, traveling
There really is something about sleeping in your very own bed. Nothing makes me appreciate that more than when I’ve been on the road for weeks.
It was a good Christmas, with the requisite overkill of presents for the dutchkid. Along with my in-laws, I also was able to spend time with some of my extended family that had just moved to the same town. I think that was the high point, especially because I got to eat some of my uncle’s fabulous homemade toffee. On the way home we took a detour for a day or so to where we used to live in South Carolina.
I was really reluctant to go back there. I even tried to convince my dh that we shouldn’t go because the dutchkid kept asking every day “Can we go home?” I’m not sure why, but sometimes after I leave a place I just don’t have any great desire to go back and rekindle the friendships I left behind. Sometimes it’s hard to realize that their life has moved on, just like yours has and it’s just not the same. But as usual, my dh was right (and yes, he is smug about that) and we had fun visiting our old church and driving past our old house.
When we got home yesterday, I thought the dutchkid would be so excited to be back. But when it was time for bed, she said plaintively, “Mama, can we go home?” I was at a loss, I tried to reassure her that this was home (at least for now). I asked her where she thought home was, but she didn’t have any idea either. Poor kid. One of the downsides of the life of a nomad, I guess.
I was in the car with my family today, listening to James Taylor sing “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” and my dh reminded me to focus on enjoying the moment and ever so briefly, I did. I haven’t been feeling so merry since we left Michigan. I love this nomadic life a lot, but I do miss my extended family sometimes. Leaving them to head south to spend actual Christmas with my dh’s family was harder than I thought it’d be. But I have much to be thankful for, and I was reminded of that today. And since those cards never did get done…
I wish for you to see the joy of children opening presents and Christmas lights reflected in the snow
I wish for you to hear someone you love laughing and the silence of the house when everyone is asleep
I wish for you to smell good things baking and to taste something someone made just for you.
Most of all, I wish for you to feel surrounded by love
The list is out.
THE list. Available assignments for the coming summer PCS cycle. It was sent out on Friday evening, after duty hours. Isn’t that nice? So everyone can agonize over what’s on the list, without being able to get any answers over the week of Christmas.
Maybe they thought they were doing everybody a favor, but personally I would have been happy to spend Christmas in blissful ignorance.
Published December 19, 2008
Tags: snow, SUVs, winter driving
I’ve never been a big SUV fan. Although we do own one, we seldom drive it unless we are transporting dogs and cargo cross country. Since we’re a military family, that means fairly often. We’ve had ours 10 years, when my dh came home from Korea it was his present (we were newlyweds back then and had the money for that sort of thing). We have moved on average every 1.6 years since then. We’ve thought about getting rid of it, but we always come back to the reality of how on earth we would get the dogs moved. We’ve actually tried fitting them in the our little car, (with the dutchkid, no less) but that wasn’t fun for anybody involved. For this trip to Michigan we took the trusty Civic since the boys are staying at a kennel.
And then we woke up this morning to a ridiculous amount of snow
I have never loved my mother’s Jeep Cherokee as much as I did this morning as it plowed through snowdrifts with ease. Since my mom lives in the sticks her road wasn’t plowed until this afternoon. I now consider myself re-certified in the art of winter driving and I can return to the south having had my fill of snow. And have I mentioned that sometimes I’m glad I don’t live here anymore?
We made it to Michigan in one piece and so far it has been a very relaxing week. The weather outside really is frightful, but I have been enjoying the snow. The dutchkid has actually gone outside with her daddy to play in it, but I am content to just look. A week is probably just enough to make me thankful that I don’t live here all winter.
We got the chance to spend some time today with my dh’s 88 year old grandmother. She is still mentally sharp and drives (safely!). The dutchkid was asking this evening if we were going back to “grandma’s house” and I am so thankful that she has so many grandmas and great grandmas that it gets confusing sometimes.
The sun has been almost nonexistent since we’ve been here, which is a little hard for the snow photos I had been envisioning. I did try out a little holiday bokeh, though, and I thought I’d share. The concept fascinates me lately.
Ahh, a few minutes to sit down. The car is mostly packed and I’m waiting on my dh to get home from class so we can get our road trip started. The past few days have been a blur of concentrated effort, I think I used up all of my remaining free brain cells to get organized. I’m now trying to decide if it was worth it. Is the stress of a week of obsessively writing everything down and planning out my days down to the minute better than just waiting until the last minute and having one supremely stressful day while I throw everything into the car? I’m going to have to think about that.
The good news is that I did get to make one batch of Jan hagel, and now I finally have pictures (I think I said I would post pictures last year to go with the recipe but never got to it).
This particular photo makes me feel like a lousy food stylist for DeRuijter, but it was a terribly rainy day here on Wednesday, and I’m still mastering the art of using the flash well. My dh managed to get our Photoshop working again, so one of my goals for this year is to learn how to use it. Every other photo you see of mine is largely unedited, save for some cropping.
Most of the Jan hagel went to the dutchkid’s preschool teachers, but we managed to eat a fair amount ourselves
If you look closely you can see her stitches on her chin. We had them removed yesterday, I was so proud of her for being a brave girl.
Sometimes I get the feeling that life is just conspiring against me. It’s been one of those weeks here already, and it’s only Tuesday. After the stitches fiasco this weekend, the dutchkid promptly caught a bug (I think from the ER) and spent all day yesterday vomiting with a low grade fever. We are leaving at the end of this week for our holiday travel spectacular, so you know I’ve got a million things to do. It seems like she’s been sick so much in the past 6 months, like this new place has all new germs.
In the interest of my own sanity, I’m starting to seriously consider giving several of my favorite holiday traditions ye olde heave ho. I love holiday traditions and usually they are a source of enjoyment for me, but when they start to tip the scale from option to obligation then I know I have to rethink them.
I scaled way back on decorations this year, which only made sense because we won’t be here to enjoy them much longer. I am rather proud of my wreaths, which are new for me this year. They suit the very weathered (that’s a romantic term for “dilapidated”) nature of my porch.
This year I will either be sending Christmas cards from Michigan (I have this unrealistic fantasy that I’m going to have all sorts of time to sit around there) or around New Year’s instead. And they likely won’t be handmade, if I’m lucky they’ll have a current family picture in them.
The holiday baking is another one. My post last year about Jan Hagel still gets a surprising amount of hits (who knew?). I had also planned to make banket this year, but I don’t think that’s going to happen. Maybe I’ll make some when I’m at my mom’s.
It does feel to me like the season really crept up on me, but when I look back on my old entries, I said that last year too. I guess it’s not really a conspiracy, it’s just life.
As a RN, I used to watch and participate in things that made others faint, or freak out. I was known for staying calm in a crisis. I used to poke and prod tiny babies in efforts to help them survive, learn to eat and thrive.
But now? Now I am completely derailed by minor procedures. I dissolve into a puddle of tears and it takes every bit of my willpower to not completely fall apart. Last night the dutchkid fell while at the babysitter’s and required stitches on her chin. I was fine with the blood, I knew she needed stitches and was fine with that initially. I was fine all through the hours in the ER, right up until the dutchkid started to freak out about being held down and they started talking about conscious sedation. Then I was most definitely NOT fine.
Watching her slip under the anesthesia was almost more than I could handle. I still can’t quite put into words why it bothered me so much. Maybe it was because I was so terrified that something was going to happen and I was never going to get her back.
It is a feeling I never want to experience again, and I don’t know how parents with chronically ill children handle it. It makes me feel terrible for any time I ever thought badly of how a parent acted under stress. It makes me wonder if I will ever be able to go back and do that job again. We finally got home at about 4am and I cried my eyes out while she slept off the rest of the medication.
The dutchkid was right as rain today, and is the proud new owner of three stitches. Yes you read that right, all that for three whole stitches. I am officially a parenting pansy.