Tuesday, December 26, 2017

Holiday aftermath (Dec. 26th)

We had a lovely (Gregorian calendar) Christmas this year, which I'll describe a little bit in a minute. Just yesterday I was still feeling great about the way things were going, despite some hardships. However, it feels like today we hit a wall and everything is going downhill. Sophia was awake from about 12:30 a.m. to 5 a.m. or so. Pulling an all-nighter for some fun or productive reason is one thing, but it's another thing to be held prisoner by a tiny, laughing creature. Yep, she was laughing and head-butting me. I threw in the towel and summoned Andrei, who needed to be up at 6:30 for work...ugh.

Amidst multiple messes this morning, I was counting down the minutes until Sophia's naptime so I could take a hot shower and wash away all the frustrations of the holiday prep that had never really been dealt with. Alas, there is no hot water. So I'm blogging instead and finally having my first cup of tea!

I remember another year when Christmas went really well and I thought we were pros, only to have New Year's be kind of a stress-fest. What went wrong? I guess I just don't have enough stamina for that many holidays right in a row. Maybe I will figure it out eventually.

Dear Future Self, if you're reading this, it's normal (or typical for you, at least) to feel cranky and tired after the Christmas euphoria/adrenaline wears off. Be gentle with yourself and your loved ones. Everyone's stretched thin this time of year. Maybe you've been holding on to some feelings and not surrendering them to the Lord? Maybe it's time for some quiet.

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Halfway there

Yesterday we were halfway through Advent! And we're nearing the shortest day of the year, which is always a bit of a relief once we're past it.

I've been encouraged by how we've been able to observe Advent this year. David (almost 5 1/2) is able to participate more and take initiative, and his enthusiasm somehow soothes the usual loneliness and dreariness this time of year.

Part of why I didn't write this post earlier is that I wanted to include a few visuals. You may recognize some of our same old decorations from other years, but there are always some changes.

I enjoyed Callie's post about enjoying Christmas as an adult, and I have to say that many of the same principles apply for me, so here is our version.

-Starting early:

Going to all that work to get out/sort decorations (if they're mingled like ours) and arrange them, only to enjoy it for a few weeks? Nope, we have to be able to enjoy them for at least a month, in my mind! I also realized that Christmas decorations and "hygge" go hand in hand, and the lights and candles help bring some comfort in the winter darkness. So...the earlier, the better! This year I got everything out right away heading into the first weekend of Advent. It's not a strict tradition or organizational thing, but rather a way to survive and thrive.

Not Christmas morning yet, but tea parties are underway.

June 2022

So, we are 4 months into what's happening in our part of the world...though, of course, we live pretty far from the border!   Currently:...