Friday, December 26, 2008

Christmas in WI

It is officially Boxing Day as I write early in the morning with Jack beside me drinking his coffee and trying to be quiet. We are in Madtown and all the rest are sleeping. The puppy woke me to go outside at 7:30 and I stayed up to download pictures and blog. Jack found me and here we are. Our Christmas was full and really an okay one. We had Amberly and Jimmy over for dinner on the 24th with entertainment by their baby Christian. I chose a simple menu of roast beef and veggies with a salad and yet was very tired just before they arrived. A few moments in a recliner to totally relax and I was up and full of vim and vigor for the holiday. We enjoyed good conversation with our food and then raced off to the Christmas eve service at the church. I do love that church and the candlelight service with Petersons and part of the congregation was just the ticket for a blessed Christmas. It is the one thing I really hate to miss on Christmas.
Home in the frosty air to open gifts with Amberly and Jimmy before they went off to the next celebration. We had been invited to Clark and Sue's but honestly by 9:30 I had gifts to wrap and dishes that needed doing so I texted my regrets and helped Jack go to bed. I finally fell in by midnight. Morning came and we had a special breakfast for just Jack, Jenna and I, packed the car to travel and opened our gifts for one another. Jack got me the 'MamaMia' DVD!
Soon it was time to leave. Jack and I waved bye to Jenna and came down to S's. I fixed a good soup with the chicken leftovers from the annual Quam open house she holds each year. Peggy and the girls came over and we had a feast. She brought a cherry cranberry pie and made the best corn muffins to go with the soup. It was a zoo but a fun one. S is still down with the nasty cold. I am a few days ahead of her in recovery so she has not voice and it is in her chest. I am still nasally and stuffed up but otherwise functioning. (No one else has it. Yeah!) Soup was good for both of us.
The dishes were done by 10 and the pup walked the last time by 12. A good night for me! Peggy and the girls got me a manicure set and some tasty goodies. Suzanne and Karah got me Burt's Bees stuff. Nice!
Today we look forward to going to mom's for a celebration and meal. Tomorrow back to Reedsburg where I still have some preparation for Life Connections class on Sunday and some chickens to cook for a time with Mike and Jessica on Sunday at their apartment. I have gifts and Jack is looking forward to getting to watch Eliana open hers. Kids are such a kick! Little Christian is a favorite of ours and he was so pleasant on Christmas eve and even slept through the candlelight service. I am so grateful for Ash sharing the pictures on Snapfish of their holiday. I felt somehow a part of it. I have been at her mom's house so the pictures were a good reminder of her pleasant and warm hospitality and decorating style. It is good to know the "in-laws"!
Our Christmas celebration time would not be complete without a time with the Peterson family and we look forward to that meal and melee of gifts for the kids on Tuesday evening at 5. I feel fortunate to have them in my life and nearby. I am a sort of grammy to them.
Test messages floated in through my day yesterday and I got a "Merry Christmas" from Ira, Jams and Jess plus some from friends as well. All in all (without obsessing on the seperation from my kids by distance) I am pleased with this Christmas. I will not let myself go into what I lack but concentrate on the many blessings I can count this Christmas and every day when I choose to sit to write my gratitude list. Merry Christmas to you all and God Bless!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

This Christmas is different but still lovely..

I always love the trappings of a celebration and am ready at the drop of a hat to make a bit of a party out of life. Any excuse and why not the celebration of the greatest Gift God ever gave to man. The ribbon on that package is still around me to remind me of the preciousness of that gift. No, I didn't always treat the gift as precious. I even took it for granted from time to time. But this year my heart is so grateful for the glory of God touching mankind with Jesus' birth and life and death on the cross and resurrection. My Lord in the morning this is truly the most awesome event in all of history and nothing compares. In my case it is very personal and vivid. I came out of darkness into the light. I came from pain and misery to joy and unconditional love. Wow!
So if I diverge forgive me. My salvation is still fresh in my heart and mind.
The tree is up and the decorations are lovely. The lights twinkle and shine and every other night they greet me as I stumble to the bathroom or to get a drink and I am so comforted at the representation of new life in Christ for me, an undeserving but oh so appreciative sinner saved by grace. I like the giving of gifts as a small token of what I have been given. I like thinking of all the people I love and preparing a small gift for them that I hope blesses them.
The feasting at holiday time is a fine thing. No matter what the feast is be it a chicken or a rolled rib roast with trimmings. Eating with friends that supper of celebration together bringing another year to a close and looking forward to the time that Jesus comes back. I love my Lord so much and seldom blog big words about it but tonight in the presence of many children and a dear friend with a cold I am so aware of my joy. The snow is blowing and swirling. The puppy is learning to sit. The gas fireplace suddenly began to work and it is sleepover night at S's house. Girls are singing little silly chants and the boys are cleaning the basement.Tish is a sleeping and the baby not far behind. Canary is snoring already as she was watching the boys clean and fell sound asleep. Small things. Other people's precious kids and I only am a small piece of caring for them. I think of Jenna with Jack and feel good. They are home and warm and safe. I think of my kids all across the country and pray for their best in all areas. I love many and much but none so much as my Lord God who saved me. Sigh. This may be over the top for a blog but I simply am bubbling over with appreciation and gratitude. My heart overflows.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

A Wonderful Wintery Day!

It is quiet time here at Suzanne's. Spongebob is on and the kids each have a couch. Tisha is in her room and no longer upset. She would not let me do the dishes so I put her away for awhile to mellow out. The dog is in his cage and out the big family room doors and windows it is blowing and cold.
I go pick up more kids by 5 so this is my last moment to rest and relax. Natch I am on the computer and lovin it!
I will add to my bloglist later when I can take more time but at least put one up. Followers please add to my list. I hate to be so singular.
Jack called me awhile ago and he sounds cozy and doing fine. Jenna is catching up on her homework today. Peggy is getting out of the hospital and hopefully in time for the "Go Fish" concert tonight. Lewcie is coming here to play with Demetrius. Tonight is bath night for all. Tomorrow is church and lucky me gets to take a bundle of kids. I do like being Godmother and Mary Poppins too.
Being a gramma is a full time job!

Thanksgiving was great!

We went afar for a family fun time!
Nashville or bust I said...well I got the flu on the way after being with sickies all weekend before we left. So forced to stop at a Super 8 somewhere in Illinois I unloaded while fighting the urge to unload more and made it in with Jack before the truly bad 8 hours began. The next day I forced myself to get up and move it out. When we arrived in Nashville I was mostly better.

Oh how fun to see Jessi and Jamie first thing. They helped us get in and unload the car. I brought gifts for all and they lined the corner of the dining area off their living room. It was so exciting to be there and see the beautiful house where Lance and Jamie live. Jamie looked thin and lovely and by golly so did Jessi Lynn. Lance got there late and they opened the envelope from the ultra-sound. Then they tortured us watching a 30 minute video of the ultra sound with the sex of the baby clear at the very end. It is a boy!

The next day brought the arrival of all the others. Ira and Ashley got there in the night and brought their sleeping kids up to waiting porta cribs. In the morning I was so excited to see all. Beck and Evie were cute as ever and full of sweetness. In the evening Jessi and Lance retrieved Brandy from the airport. My heart my heart!

Thanksgiving day was a day for relaxing and later a supper of Lasagna, salad and garlic bread at the beautiful table. We did the actual Thanksgiving meal a day late and that made it so easy and fun. Lance is a virtual energizer bunny and did have coffee and breakfast ready each morning. Jack's bedroom was a lovely futon on the lower level in the den ( soon to be baby's nursery) and so my upstairs bedroom gave me much needed rest. Lance gave Jack his breakfast before I even meandered down. That was a godsend for me and I really got rested!

So we put the turkey in at 7 a.m. and it was fine at 2 p.m. The menu was turkey, stuffing, mashed dilly potatoes, whipped sweet potatoes, tater- tot casserole with green beans, corn and cranberries. So traditional and simple. I enjoyed the whole day! What a black Friday. We played fun games in the afternoon. Spoon and egg carry for the kids and wheelbarrow races plus egg toss for the adults. Lance was a fun Host! We opened the Thanksgiving presents after dinner and before pie. Everyone got something nice.

Later that night we took a trip to the Opreyland Hotel and walked a mile and another mile and another but oh how beautiful it was! Jack stayed home and slept while we went on the adventure. We saw a Christmas show and so many beautiful lights.

Lance took us out to some fun boutiques and stores too and I found a cake carrier from the 50's.
Ash found a cook book holder made from white painted iron and an adorable cellulose doll from the 50-60's for her kitchen window. Treasures from a trip are even more special!

So eventually Tuesday rolled around and Jack and I hit the road at 10:30. We made it to the same Super 8 by dark and stayed a better stay that night and got home Weds. afternoon. We are now back to normal and the trip is a pleasant memory. Pictures are ordered and memories will be forever when we are reminded. Playing soccer with Beck and watching him go crazy excited when his little sister opened her birthday gifts. We celebrated Evie's early with Ashley's on Saturday. Evie carried around a "baby" as big as she is. Gramma loves to give gifts! Ashley got a set of silverware that she needed and I got a subscription for her to Mary Jane's Farm magazine.