Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Happy New Year

Christmas is over.  I have to say that this year I am sad it's over.  It really does go by so quickly doesn't it?

We had a wonderful Christmas.  Truly wonderful.  We got to spend a lovely six days up north with my sees-ter and the kids and my dad and we crammed as much fun as we possibly could into that time.  

I have mostly just photos to share right now.  Words will come later. I've not been feeling that well and I'm trying to stay up until midnight.  That makes me feel old, that I can hardly stay up until midnight to celebrate the new year anymore! 

As usual my sister went overboard and we all received some fabulous gifts.  

Two of my favorite gifts:  a printer that prints photos directly from. My iPhone, and a fun retro mini Polaroid camera.  So fun!  My goal this year is to journal more and be better about keeping a scrapbook.  Facebook makes it too easy not to do that and I haven't in several years. 

Another of my favorite gifts.  What an amazing book this is. If you are on instagram you must follow them. So interesting! I also received some much needed towels and a case for my ipad.  It's funny how as you get older your wish list leans toward the practical.  

The day after Christmas Stacey and family invited us to spend the evening in Half Moon Bay where they were camping.  It was an unheard of 72 degree day and we sat on the beach and watched the sunset.  It was such a beautiful day.  

On Saturday Lisa was nice enough to be our chauffeur to Big Sur.  It's been  a year and a half since I was last there and several years for joe.  I love it there.  It's my happy place.  

It was breathtaking, as usual.  Again we were blessed with beautiful weather.  

This trip was full of many beautiful sunsets. 

2013 started out a little rough but ended on a high note.  I'm not one to make resolutions but I vow to be more active, journal more and move to my own place .  I'm going to do that  very soon.  I'm not sure how yet but I'm going to make it happen.  

Sunday is my birthday and I feel kind of apathetic about it. I find as I get older the number doesn't really phase me much.  I'm lucky to be having birthdays at all! 

2014 and 43 are going to be filled with good things.  I can feel it. 

Happy new year everyone!

Friday, December 20, 2013

Merry Christmas.

It's almost here. 

Four more days until Christmas.  

That went by so quickly!  

I have to work one more day.  After work on Monday we will wait for some of the traffic to dissipate before we get on the road to my sister's.  I'm so excited.   

I have six days off and I'm so looking forward to it.  At some point joe and I are going to drive up to Big Sur.  I can't wait.  I love it there so much!  I missed our yearly trip there this summer.  

Last weekend we went in search of more Christmas cheer with our annual trip to Roger's Gardens.  Love it there. Always so festive.  

Afterwards we drove around looking at Christmas lights.  We have some great houses close to us.  People go all out!  One of the houses not far from us was even on that reality show "The Great Light Fight"(of course I love that show...lol). They didn't win but their house is pretty amazing, with a light show that is choreographed to music.  Very cool.  

This house was my favorite.  So pretty!

The trees at roger's are always my favorite.  

I couldn't quite figure out the theme of this tree.   A tree for a botanist or biologist perhaps?

Out of all the lights we saw though, there is one house that beats them all.  That is the house that I am currently renting from.  Yes, my landlord has a bit of an obsession with Christmas decorations/lights.  I give you:


The house that I'm living in. 

Front walkway

I wish I had better pictures.  I was trying to be stealth about taking them.  Everyday day when I came home from work he was adding something to it.  On the far left that's a Ferris wheel that lights up and spins. Crazy!

Can't say he's lacking in Christmas spirit!

I don't know how much I will post on vacation so I want to wish everyone(anyone?) reading a very merry Christmas. I hope yours are as wonderful as mine is going to be.  

This really has been the best Christmas season I've had in a very long time. I'm so grateful for everything in my life.  


Friday, December 13, 2013

Warp speed ahead

How is it that thanksgiving was only two weeks ago?  Doesn't it seem like a long time ago?  It does to me. But at the same time Christmas feels like it's coming at warp speed.  

Thanksgiving was lovely. Truly wonderful.  It was SO nice to have Monday off. Gave us a whole extra day to enjoy and no traffic at all coming home. 

There was Christmas tree choosing, and overeating, Elf watching and Christmas present making.  Awesome.  

Christmas. Oh how I'm loving this Christmas season.  The lights. The tree(I put mine up the week before thanksgiving!). The gift buying and wrapping(which I usually despise).  The music.  All of it.   Loving it. My mom loved Christmas. She always made it so special. 

It has been several years since I have enjoyed Christmas like this. I'm just feeling so very good this year.   

My Christmas tree this year.  I lost all of my ornaments and decorations in the move(s) so I had to start from scratch.  I chose jewel tone colors.  I love the way it turned out.  

I'm all done shopping and even wrapped all of my presents.  I hate wrapping presents.  Despise.  I'm so bad at it. Usually my presents turn out ripped, or lumpy, or both.  This year I had an idea to just use brown Kraft paper(because it's sturdy) and colored twine. I couldn't find the twine when I went to Michael's but I happened upon some Christmas Washi tape. So much better than ribbon or twine!  No tying required. It just sticks to the paper.  Love it.  I wanted to do something different for tags as well. I've seen on pinterest using pictures of each recipient but I don't have a printer right now(I'm hoping to get one for Christmas- hint hint). I decided to use scrapbook paper letters instead.  I just pulled out my Cricut and cut a bunch of letters in different sizes.  I'm really happy with how they turned out.  

Last Saturday night was our staff Christmas party.  It was at a beautiful restaurant in Laguna Beach and we had a wonderful time.  I was missing some very special people though and so much wished they could have been there.  

As happy as I am this Christmas, I know there are people out there for which Christmas is not a happy time.  For some this time of year is wrought with loneliness, isolation and sadness.  My heart goes out to you if you fall under that category.  I've been there. Last Christmas was incredibly difficult. I mostly just wanted it to be over.  The year my mom died was horrid too.  Actually the last five Christmases have been not that great.   As happy as I am this Christmas, those times stick with me and I feel for others going through a hard time. 

I want to send out a virtual hug and loving thoughts to anyone reading this that just hopes to get through the holiday season unscathed, who wish it would just end already.  I get it. I'm sorry.  I wish for this season to go by quickly and happier holiday seasons to come.