outing: solo shopping outings, watching Isaac play his violin last night at his school winter concert, finding shoes for the wedding (hoping I can make it in heels), movie date tonight with Eliza, church Christmas dinner and family dinners to attend this weekend.
doing: crossing off my list bit by bit, but not feeling the stress or pressure like I have most years. Those early years of my motherhood where I felt like I was on a runaway train and couldn't get off... homemade gifts for everyone on my list, sewing Christmas dresses for the girls and pajamas for all the kids, baking my guts out for the neighborhood, (churning out 18+ loaves of bread in one day was not an uncommon feat.), etc, etc. I'm finding that I've let go of a lot of the expectations I've put on myself over the years. Striving to only do those things that bring me joy. Trying to simplify and cut back, even when part of me feels like I should and can do more. But with all the extra factors of this month, I'm finding that simplifying is a true necessity.
It was nice to send out our Christmas card and letter this week. (a few more to mail.) So glad we had that family photo taken back in August. Still need to do some more shopping (isn't online shopping wonderful?), send Sam's and a few other packages off, and a bit of baking, but I know from all the experience of previous Christmases that things always get done if they are important enough.
listening: Rachmaninoff, Chef AJ's plant-based eating teleclasses on Youtube, and of course, various Christmas music channels on Pandora.
reading: in bed with Isaac the other night: Pearl S. Buck's classic Christmas Day in the Morning (my very favorite. I cry every time.) and Cajun Night Before Christmas (in honor of my heritage. Surprising myself how I totally rock the accent.)
eating: that big plate of potatoes and zucchini for breakfast lasting me all morning, and probably through the afternoon.
missing: my morning walks. Oh, how I miss being outside.
enjoying: coming downstairs in the early morning to the light and warmth of the Christmas tree lights.
Having all of us gathered around that beautiful tree all cozy last night. (G & G came over after Isaac's concert, Jane wanting to come home after getting off work). All of us laughing at something cute Isaac said. Gary's smile while his hands cup his mug of cocoa. Greta wrapped up and snuggled in the red throw. Me rubbing Jane's soft hands. Eliza (president of her school service committee) sharing with all of us the joy she's felt and the transformation she's seen in her fellow students throughout their school-wide "Service Week" which she spearheaded. Each day with a theme... Make a New Friend Day, Let's Honor the Janitors Day, Secret Service Day, and today's Service Auction to raise money for needy families at the school. So proud of all the work and thought that she's put into this huge project.
smiling: these beautiful, perfect wedding announcements. The big day just a few weeks away.
Thanks to all who have left sweet comments here or on Facebook for my photo card giveaway. There's still time to "enter the drawing"! xo