I haven't been blogging for a while, and I'll explain why later... But it has been so long since I did, I almost forget how!
"Fibro(myalgia) Fog" has overtaken my brain so much that I often forget how I got to bed the night before or any number of other things, so I can't remember what we've done for Advent since we've lived here in Miami. I love planning activities and giving treats to the kids in celebration of The One whose birth we are recognizing, so this year I put together a last-minute (though not-exactly slap-dash, as much planning and care went into it) Advent tree. With a huge amount of help from 15-year-old Chloë for the first time this year, on November 30th after Jack and Sophie went to sleep, we glued and packaged and assembled this-here Advent calendar. Voilà!!
Sophia pulling the first day's baggie down from the Advent tree
I decided to ask Chloë actually to open and disperse the contents of said baggie.
Today's treat was a pack of bubblegum for each kid. And then **drumroll, please** the reading! As you can see from Jack's face, somethin' exciting was about to happen!
This year, we decided to flip Christmas upside-down and give the kids their big gift on the FIRST day of Advent, rather than on Christmas Day. And why not? Who says we can't? Nobody, that's who! So, what was it?
XBOX ONE! With the Minecraft Bundle! The kids ALL wanted the Xbox One for purposes of updated game-playing, and both girls really wanted to play Minecraft. That seems to be a craze that is not going anywhere anytime soon. So, yay! And that's genuine joy on Jack's face!
I wasn't able to get a photo of Jack with the big game he wanted, because he ripped it open so fast and accidentally ripped off the cover in his haste to start playing it. Boy-child LOVES his Farming Simulator on his tablet, and he wanted the '17' for Xbox exceedingly much. Trust me, this child has been asking to play this game as often as he breathes. School? What school?
(Just kidding. To his chagrin, there must still be school.)
But why did we flip Christmas upside-down this year, you might ask? (Well, even if you didn't, I'm still gonna tell ya.) Because... I bought this 3-month Xbox Live Gold membership (if I said that wrong, it's because I'm a total gaming n00b, so forgive me) (see, I know that much), and I accidentally redeemed it when I bought it. Heh heh! So... I kind of forced myself into giving the gift early so as not to waste any of those three months! Silly me!
THE UNBOXING! Woohoo! Let the games begin!
I haven't been blogging for over a month, because I feel like I've lost my audience and because of that, my voice. You see, I started this blog over 10 years ago to keep our far-flung family and friends apprised of our excruciatingly important (ha) goings-on. Mainly, my audience consisted of the rapt attention of my dear mother-in-law.
A couple of months ago, Mamacita as I fondly called her, passed away.
I'm crying even as I write this, because even though I wasn't her child by birth, and I was often the problem child by marriage (trust me when I say that I am difficult and I know that I am difficult), I loved her. I loved her and her involvement with our family and with the kids' upbringings.
She sent decorations for Christmas (from Missouri, where she lived until moving to Louisiana to be closer to Rob's sister Gail in the last year). She requested the kids' homeschool reading book lists each year, and each year a box would come from Amazon with many of my selections inside, waiting for the children when the time was right. She sent her love, she sent her heart, she sent her spirit, with every box that came.
And I loved her.
And I miss her dearly.
Love you, Mamacita...