There is only so much free time for a mother of five. Even eschewing proper amounts of sleep, there are not enough hours in the day. So, a sort of choice, not really a conscious one, more of an "oops, another day without a blog post," consequence came about, because of an ambitious knitting project, the above stockings plus two. As December 6th (St.Nicholas) approached, the tension built and knitting took precedence over reading and writing. I listened to some fabulous audio books during that time. I took a business trip too, for 3 days, 5 days before Christmas. I also binge-watched (new term in the post-Netflix world) a whole silly series; "Reign," while working on the one knitted Christmas gift that has not yet been completed. In fact, the last show of the series ended last night, but the gift is not quite finished.
Two weeks later, we were on our way to Colorado for Christmas, our first and only (I'm warning you, kids) one away from both families. It was breathtakingly beautiful, peaceful and fun. Hiking in the mountains, playing Old Maid and Speed, reading, drawing, knitting and eating were our main activities. There was no tv, no movies, just us. We brought the stockings, two small ornaments and a little Christmas tree. It snowed, too; 8 inches overnight from the 24th to the 25th.
That was most considerate of the mountain weather, as Iowa was entirely without snow for the whole month of December. Still, it was odd; the grandparents and families were in France and Iowa. Though we had our immediate family around us, we function with extended family as the norm, and we missed them greatly.
View from the bedroom window.
Back in (snowless) Iowa, before leaving, the chopper of trees made sure we had a pretty tree for home.
I was still embroidering the names on the stockings (by now known as the "damn stockings") as Christmas Eve approached.
Making Christmas cookies before leaving:
Christmas Morning: (Family tradition; Daddy makes a fire and lights candles before children come down. In theory, very sweet. In practice, it means Mama is at the top of the stairs holding back the masses and holding hearings as to who gets to rush down the stairs first this year. Luckily, Dad also makes coffee while downstairs.)
Leaving Estes Park...one last picture as we wish we could remain another day, another week...
Wishing you a new year 2015 full of all life's blessings!