December 20, 2012

The Simple Things: Holiday Prep and Koala-Bear-Clings

Can you believe we're only days away from Christmas? How did that happen so quickly? In our house this week, there have been a lot of tissues for snuffly noses, cuddles for my sick boy (he has his first bad winter cold), and last-minute holiday preparations as we put the last few touches on decorations and plan out the last-minute gifts. Which most of mine are (last-minute). Every year I tell myself I'm going to be better about getting gifts as I see them through the year, or starting the process of hand-making things earlier, but alas, I'm doing a lot of week-of prep.

Last week I had my 25th birthday, so a few of my favorite things recently are overflows of my birthday. The rest of my list is just a few random things that have put me in a brighter mood and brought cheer to these mid-December days!

  • getting crafty as I work on gifts and also brainstorm fun new projects (mostly in the realm of paper-cutting, but also some handmade ornaments and simple sewing projects)
  • my awesome new brown leather boots from my mom! She spoiled me (literally) and sent me a birthday care package to pamper myself with chocolates, aloe-infused socks, a mani/pedi kit, my first Essie nail polish ('She's Pampered' haha) and peppermint foot cream. To take care of myself and then wear my awesome new boots ;) 
  • birthday cards and Christmas cards from dear friends and family
  • peppermint marshmallows and pumpkin pie Pop-Tarts. Both sound yuck but are SO YUM. Not kidding. I'm sure both are wonderful for you (ha), but sometimes it's fun to try new things. Next time I'll try to find healthier snacks to purchase when I'm hungry at the grocery store... but it's the holidays so I say, indulge a little!
  • really meaningful and thought-provoking conversations with my husband about how we want to establish holiday and birthday traditions (particularly in terms of gift-giving) in our family. Which all started last week when I was a birthday diva to my husband (a story for another day). These conversations that arose out of a sour night actually have really been one of the things I've loved most about this particular holiday season. Mostly because I like a good challenge and I can feel that the Lord is making changes in my heart about some things that I personally was holding onto way too tightly. It's really been interesting as I think about materialism, budgets, wants vs. needs, making vs. buying gifts, and why we put such an importance on gifts at this time of the year in the first place. I know the story of Jesus and the gifts that the wise men brought, but it kind of becomes 'me' focused when we spend beyond our means at this time of the year and the gifts can actually distract us from the Truth of Christmas. Not trying to challenge or shake anyone else up here, but just wanted to share with you good work that God is doing in my heart through this past week especially.
  • on a lighter note, I'm loving creating holiday playlists on Spotify (for those of you who don't know what Spotify is, it's basically a free music player where you can organize and play songs from various artists and albums, and also listen to the playlists of other users). A favorite playlist I've found- 'A Perry Como Christmas,' with the delightful sounds of Johnny Mathis, the Carpenters, and of course Perry himself. 
  • this zucchini chocolate chip muffin recipe from my favorite baking blog that I've now made a total of 3 times (and they turn out amazing every single time)
  • singing in a CHOIR! Hooray! I've joined my in-laws' church choir just for the Christmas season to sing in the cantata (which is this coming Sunday!) and it feels SO wonderful to be singing again. And I'm especially touched/excited to be singing a solo of 'Mary Did You Know,' a song that I've always loved and one that means so much more to me this year.
  • the creative burst of energy I've had these past few days while Emmett has been under the weather. He's been sick since Sunday evening, we've been to the doctors twice this week, and he's been having a really rough time breathing through his nose and has had a fever on and off. No fun at all. BUT I will mention, I kind of have loved how much he's wanted his mama (he's been clinging to me in what I call koala-bear-clings) and I've loved (for the most part) having to put down everything else just to cuddle and love on him. So the burst of creative energy has probably been a result of not being able to take him outside for walks and trying to think outside the box with how to entertain him. I wrote him a silly poem, made up new lyrics to 'Silent Night' so that I can keep singing that song to him after Christmas, have been making up stories like crazy (especially about ducks and monkeys), and have been making fun, creative plans for 2013 (to be continued!!!! Check back in January to find out what I'm working on!)
On a final note, I'll share with you the words I made up for Emmett to be sung to the tune of 'Silent Night.' And I'll share with you a few pictures from the past week of my pitiful/adorable sick child who is 25 stinkin' weeks old today (and will be 6-months old on the 27th. What?!).

Emmett Lee, I love thee
Do not fear, Mama's here
In my arms, you're safe and sound
Through your life will my life abound
Go to sleep my sweet child
Go to sleep my sweet child

Simple enough but it does the trick of helping him fall asleep. He loves 'Silent Night.' He is so my child :)

Mom, settle down. Your hair is cray.

So flexible.

Emmett-sized furniture.

Just lounging.

On the way to the doc's today
Christmas sleeps. Probably after I sang the modified Silent Night.

Love, peppermint and koala-bear hugs to you all!
Mama Bird

3 comments:

  1. Heather! I'm totally on the same page these days with you about gift giving and becoming a birthday/Christmas diva. It's tough, but I think it's good to face these issues head on and work through them before they get bigger. Good for you and Neil for taking the opportunity to discuss!

    I love your new lyrics for Silent Night, and I also want to see a video of you singing your solo in church!

    And lastly, I LOVE your pictures of Emmett, especially the one after his bath. After-bath towel snuggles are the best!

    Love and miss you guys :) Merry Christmas!

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  2. I just painted my nails 'She's pampered' last night! It's such a fun holiday, and everyday, colour.

    Loving the sweet photos of Emmett!

    ReplyDelete
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