Monday, February 16, 2015

Report from WINTER

A few weeks ago, Tim and I went on a little getaway to the Samoset, for no real reason except we both had winter birthdays and we love it there.  It's crazy to look at this first picture because when we arrived there was no snow on the ground.  And that was the weekend that the SNOW started.

We went out for 5 miles along the ocean, and when we got back...

It looked like this.

And the next morning, it looked like this:

So, we had this incredible weekend where we drank a lot of coffee and watched it snow and stayed in bathrobes.

And the only place really to go was downstairs to the Ice Bar they had set up outside, with ice sculptures and fancy cocktails.

While it was snowing and snowing, we had fantastic meals and good drinks and tons of quiet time by the fire, and life. is. good.

Ever since that weekend we have had a big snow storm every 3 or 4 days.

The snow just keeps piling up.

And we even had back-to-back snow days during the biggest storm, which required sledding dates and donuts and hot chocolate.

The kids are not complaining at all.  They love every last inch of it.

We skied/snowboarded every Tuesday during January, and so Tuesdays decided to be the coldest day of the week.  We are talking just a couple of degrees, and I mentioned that it might be too cold to ski, but these kids thought nothing of it.  They taught me (and continue to teach me) that you can't AVOID things because of winter, you just bundle up and go.

And so, we skied in zero degrees in the dark.  If they can do it, I can do it.

I've been embracing winter as they have.  (It's only February, so we are still "embracing" for a few more weeks, until we get to the M word.)

In February, Reed turned EIGHT and I made him this cake.  I knew that NO one would ask me if I got the idea for the gorgeous design on Pinterest, and in fact, one little boy asked me:  "What is that even supposed to resemble?"  It resembles a cake.  With gummy worms.

We rented a space, hired a hip-hop/ breakdancing teacher, and 15 friends braved the 4th or 5th (I've lost count) snow storm of the year to come celebrate.  It was, in Reed's words:  THE BEST BIRTHDAY PARTY EVER.  He says that every year.

When the kids get another year older, you can't help but look back.  So, here's a little Reedo Retrospective.   

What an adventure it is to raise this boy. Reed is fiercely independent, and his most common line is probably, "Mom, I'm FINE!"   He keeps his room perfectly organized.  He still can't sit on his chair without falling onto the floor at least once per dinner.  His favorite food is spaghetti and meatballs. He has his own parmesan cheese shaker because he can never get enough.  He will break dance for anyone who asks.  He wears Old Spice deodorant.  At last count, he has 91 friends.  He is at his wildest and wiggliest the last hour before bed, but then he sleeps like a rock. He says he loves the Patriots, but he's never actually watched even one play (too wiggly). He loves everyone, but especially his brother Ellis.

And even though he only switched from skiing to snowboarding this year, the kid is good.

After 3 weeks of constant snow storms, I packed the kids and their bathings suits and drove them here, to Great Wolf Lodge in Massachusettes for the first half of our February Vacation.  I'm writing this in bed and they are both sound asleep next to me.  

Today was the first day of training for our next marathon:  The Black Bear Marathon on June 21st.  Day one, week one:  check.

Stay warm, friends!  xoxo

Thursday, January 1, 2015

hope smiles from the threshold

“[I]f this life of ours
Be a good glad thing, why should we make us merry
Because a year of it is gone? but Hope
Smiles from the threshold of the year to come, 
Whispering 'it will be happier'...” 
― Alfred, Lord Tennyson

Today I did exactly what I love to do on New Years Day:  I worked out this morning, and then spent the rest of the day cleaning. YES. I love the holidays, and as soon as they are over, I get super motivated to organize, declutter, and streamline for the new year. I packed up things to give away, and threw out many bags of trash. All day I thought about what a blessed thing it is to have a home with so much love, and so many things, that there is actually stuff in excess, more than we need.  

What a year was 2014.  Everyone stretched into this new space that is our life.  Kids grew and laughed. There were 1001 lovely things.  Good meals, happy home, family and friends all around. And that would have been way more than enough, but we also had a wedding, ran a marathon, and went to Italy. And yet we all have this exuberance heading into a new year, sure that the goodness will just keep coming.  The sky was so pink and pretty tonight, so full of promise.  Did you see it?

Part of my clean-up today included getting all of the photos off my phone and camera, and lo and behold, I realized how long it's been since I've posted.  I have over a month of photos, and it was a lovely month!

 Look how beautiful and wintry it is here in Maine!  Just kidding, these are from November.  We actually had hardly any snow in December.  

 Our skis are ready to go, but we haven't used them yet.  What have we been doing instead?

We re-did Reed's bedroom.  BEFORE: (We peeled the wallpaper that had been there since Hillary was born, and re-plastered the walls.)

Reed was thrilled, and we were exhausted.

BOTH kids are playing basketball which was a given for Reed, but for Skyler, joining the team was a leap of faith and we are super proud of her for doing it. Turns out, she loves it.

We had an unbelievably wonderful December and holiday season full of everything I needed.  We ate well, baked a lot, prepared gifts, and soaked in the coziness of the Christmas season. 

twenty minutes after this very sweet moment, the tree fell over and all the ornaments fell off.  

it's tiring to be such a good girl.

Skyler followed through with her idea to make fleece blankets for kids in the pediatric ward at the hospital.  Just before Christmas, she made the delivery.  I honestly take no credit for this girl's generosity and empathy. She truly understands the Christmas spirit, and I'm just lucky to be her mom.  

Christmas Eve candlelight service

 Reed was more focused on what Santa would bring, but he had his sweet moments too.

We spent Christmas morning all together, four kids, two of us, and both of our moms, packed into this room bursting at the seams with generosity, love, and gratitude.  Plus, I made cinnamon rolls, bacon, and egg strata, and for dinner, pulled off beef wellington, because I am my mother's daughter.

Christmas loves x 4

the prettiest thing I made in December:  fig, olive oil, sea salt challah
Honestly, I am still not convinced that this life isn't just a figment of my imagination.  How lucky can one person be?

Tennyson says that this year will be even happier?  Okay.  Let's get going on that.
Happy New Year to all of you.