when you get behind and decide to stay there

After I finished my days of thanks series, December hit.  And all I wanted to do was sit in front of our Christmas tree and bask in its beauty.  And also pick up lots of extra shifts at work because a) they were available and I’m not skilled at saying no and b) extra money around Christmas time is what I call A Very Good Thing.  All that being said, I didn’t post about our weekend in Denver with my family or Christmas Day or going to the zoo or all the books I’ve read lately or (insert many other things I’ve wanted to write about).  Instead they just piled up and I felt too overwhelmed to start, to just start somewhere and be okay with being behind.

Except for now.

Today is Sunday and on Sundays I feel good about doing what I want.  (Whereas I don’t feel that way on Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays, or Fridays because I have this mindset that says “If Danny is at work I should do work whether it is at my job or at home.”)

And on this particular Sunday, Danny is going to the Broncos game.  (This is a big deal because he has never been to an NFL game ever and besides this one in particular is a playoff game and also he and Mysteridge will be sitting in the The Fifth Row.  Danny doesn’t know about The Fifth Row yet because Mysteridge and I think surprises are awesome.)

So today, for me, is Catching Up on Blogging Day and hopefully also the start of getting into a sustainable routine with said blogging.

Without further ado, the highlights of the past 5-6 weeks…

We met my family in Denver one Saturday afternoon and volunteered at Operation Christmas Child’s Denver processing center.  We’ve done this every year for a whole bunch of years now, and I don’t know what to say other than it’s just really great.  A great way to be together, to serve together, and to make a tangible difference in the lives in many children.

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We spent a weekend in Denver with my family doing fun things like playing games, going to the Denver Zoo, staying at a hotel, eating out, going shopping, and walking through the Blossoms of Light at the Denver Botanic Gardens.

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We finished decorating for Christmas and decided that our tree might just be the most beautiful Christmas tree ever.  I mentioned it before, but Danny made even more strands of cranberries and popcorn to hang on the tree and snowflakes to dress up the sliding door.  We hung our stockings by the fire and picked out a tree topper at Target.  We worked on a puzzle and finished it right before Christmas.

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One morning we woke up to an especially beautiful sunrise outside all of our windows and my thankfulness for where we live was renewed.

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After spending a few years creating a funny Christmas card picture while we were in college, Danny wanted to carry on the tradition as a married couple.  You may have seen our final copy on Facebook, but here’s the first picture the self-timer captured.

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We went to the Electric Safari at the Cheyenne Mountain Zoo here in Colorado Springs (another favorite annual tradition).  A highlight was definitely watching this pretty bird drop coins into his piggy bank.

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I brought my parents and Mysteridge to see the library where I work and to get a taste for what working there is like.  Including feeding the ducks.  I stayed far away and watched them interact with the critters I have developed such a fear of.

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We celebrated Christmas Eve with Danny’s parents, sister, and his brother and his wife.  No Christmas celebration is complete without a fire of some kind, so thankfully Keith was able to get one started in the TV, complete with sound effects.

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Christmas morning brought a great deal of fun and joy and nice gifts.  I thought I knew for sure what was in one of the boxes since I picked it up from our doorstep and it said Macy’s on the outside and I knew Danny had ordered me a purse from said establishment.  So when I unwrapped the box and started to open it, I was confident I was opening a purse I had requested a few weeks prior.  Much to my surprise (and dismay), it was actually a backpack.  My backpack.  That I bought myself when I started college four years ago.  Yes, he ‘gave’ me something that already belonged to me.  It was the first time I ever remember feeling upset by a Christmas present.  I didn’t know it was a joke at the time, so here’s a picture of me being sad on Christmas morning.

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We spent Christmas afternoon at my aunt and uncle’s house and enjoyed a game of Reverse Charades (yes, it’s a real game and yes, it’s really fun) that EVERYONE joined in on (side note: this has never happened before).  There was a lot of moving around and shouting and craziness, and my pictures certainly reflect it.  I especially love this one because it looks like even my Grandpa is having fun!

DSC08254We attended a dinner party to celebrate the birthday of our friend Bonnie and it was loads of fun.  She loves watching friends perform, so after a nice dinner at her house, we went to another family’s house for the performance portion of the evening.  Poems were recited, harps played, guitars strummed, and so much fun was had by all.  What a great idea for a birthday party!  

DSC08256My aunt, uncle, and cousins came over for a night of games and brownies while they were still on Christmas vacation.  My cousin remembered that we have the same panda pajamas and wore hers!  I promptly changed into mine so we could match for the duration of the evening (and hopefully every family gathering from here on out) and it was the best.

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We went sledding last Sunday after getting an inch of snow the previous day.  Danny got a sled for Christmas, as well as all manner of outdoor gear, and he was itching to give them a trial run.  Remember that wonderful nature path right by our apartment?  One section of it includes a super steep hill and there’s a few hazardous sections as well.  I happened upon both of the aforementioned dangers, combined with the half-inch of snow that was left and took a rather perilous flip over my sled and landed on my right hand.  Danny laughed while I cried in the snow.  And no, I still don’t think it’s funny.  At least he had fun and I got to take a couple days off of work to recover.

DSC08261The only highlight that I don’t have a picture of is Danny receiving a One Direction CD in his stocking.  I keep thinking that whoever filled his stocking must really know what he (and his wife) likes!  And in case you’re wondering, I did get the purse I had been wanting.  It was hiding in a box that didn’t say Macy’s all over it.

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