Keep it Simple

This post may be a little long winded.  I am putting my thoughts out here in black and white.  Whew.  Christmas.  It took my breath away this year.  Anyone else?  Yes I know, its always December 25th.  And I am a planner.  I make a list every single day.  And each January I note in my November/December calendars what I need to do by when for the next Christmas season.  I did not do this last year.  My main focus was the birth of our fourth child due 2/8/15. 

We have traditions we do as a family each Christmas season that we have done since our oldest was born.  We visit Santa. We go to Hallmark and the kids pick out their annual ornament. We host a cookie baking/decorating session at our house with grandparents, great-grandparents, and cousins. And, Joe and I get a rare day to ourselves of Christmas shopping while grandparents entertain the kids (and by entertain....last year it was Holiday in the Park at Six Flags and this year it was Santa parachuting from the sky in Frisco, TX...complete WIN/WIN for us and our four littles.)  Sounds simple.  {Side note:  The elves parachuting before Santa was a success.  Santa not so much.  He landed in the parking lot.  Upon a trip to the ladies room my mom ran into said Santa in the hallway and because she is one of the friendliest women ever she asked Santa if he was ok and they conversed about what went wrong and the last minute decision he made to land in the parking lot vs the crowd of excited children.  Details.  Memaw gets the deats.} 

Simple.  I just reread the above paragraph.  Even though our traditions do involve monetary and material things its clearly not about that.  Its the memories.  Fast forward to Christmas in 2016.  We will absolutely keep the traditions.  Also, we will continue to spend Christmas Eve at my grandparents with extended family and cousins at the Flying O' Farm and Christmas Day with more grandparents and somewhere in their we gather with more grandparents and Joe's three brothers and their wives and our nieces and nephews.  Its a complete blessing!  Grandparents and siblings and in-laws and most importantly cousins...lots of kiddos all relishing in everything Christmas and what Christmas is to a child.  Pure Joy.
Getting ready to start our 3 days of Christmas.  All the kids are looking and kind of smiling.  YAY!  Two don't have shoes on.  yay.

Christmas 2016 will be slightly different because while making these very important memoires we will keep the monetary part simple.  Simple so that we can focus on the memories. 

We can not even walk in the playroom right now because I have not taken the time to go through and reorganize toys for four kids.  My dad has a saying of "its out of hand".  For us this Christmas more ways than one.  Is it because I did not start Christmas shopping in July?...maybe. 

Most are new toys, some are old but very much played with, and the other new toys are in bedrooms or other areas of the house.  -sigh-

A fresh start.  I love a fresh start.  There is something therapeutic about taking down all of the Christmas décor.  As much as I love it once December 25th passes I am usually ready to put it away and reorganize. 
 When the kids are grown we will have white lights.  For now its "rainbow" for our littles!

"The reason for the season" and a kitty.

The playroom tree filled with all of the kids homemade ornaments over the years. 


 Rudolph must have been attacked by a certain Rhodesian Ridgeback. Rudolph,the one-eyed reindeer.

I actually took the time to enjoy New Year's Eve and New Year's Day.  New Year's Eve we went to my parents for burgers and fireworks and New Year's Day we cooked at home and Joe's parents came over.

Yum.  Joe recently started smoking--food.  Ribs, chicken, everything.  I even did mac n cheese one time.  The best. 

As I was sitting down to start this post I found a draft from July that I had started.
"For the past 3 years we have sold/packed/moved from our home, built a house, and unpacked that house.  Its a blur really.  And had baby #4.  This is the first time/summer/year that I have felt I can be intentional about my goals.  I am highly goal oriented and make a list every day.  But even a list-a-day does not get things done.  You have to be intentional.  Most of that is time management.  Especially with baby #4 in the house I have learned that I can not realistically get 20 things done in a day.  So lately my lists have been short.  Simplified if you will.  This allows me to stay motivated because each day I feel a small sense of accomplishment."

This still holds true.  Cheers to a fresh start and a new year.  Keep it simple!    

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