The Christmas “Shake It Off”

My 11-year-old likes to run around in the backyard. Almost every single day, he’ll announce, “I’m going outside!” and grab his coat. Our backyard is oddly shaped and not flat. He’ll run – back and forth, back and forth – between two trees on the uneven terrain. Says he needs to “think and get my energy out.”

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It’s Never Just Valentine’s Day

2020-02-15 The Day That She Died

In the passing of years since my daughters died, I have become more prepared for the “hard days” – the hardest being their birthdays.  Nelle’s birthday was Labor Day weekend that particular year, so it ushers in multiple days of grief in the subsequent years.  And Iris’s birthday is February 13th – the day before Valentine’s Day.  As our family prepares to shower love on each other, I am slammed the day before with how she is not with us. Continue reading

Continuing the Holiday Magic

2020-01-06 Continuing the Holiday Magic

Photo by Mel Poole on Unsplash

A friend of mine told me recently that she thinks her Elf on the Shelf is going to retire.  Her kids are 10 and 8 and aren’t enthralled by the Elf anymore, so Peppermint is going to bring a note explaining that she has enjoyed coming to their house every year, but she is done now. Continue reading

A Day of Subtle Reminders

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I was at a conference in San Antonio this week, and it was long and exhausting.  After arriving home late on Wednesday evening, Thursday seemed like a day to take it easy.  Ger and I went out to lunch at a tiny restaurant that featured wine and small plates.  I had first been there years ago with a book club that I had joined when we first moved to Illinois, and many times since with friends.  It was Ger’s first time at the restaurant. Continue reading