As we ourselves begin to go into hibernation for the cold months ahead - so often it seems that my camera does, too. But as I was scrolling through very, very old blog posts late last night after watching old home videos with my boys, I was reminded that - just like in the early days of our family - even when there are few pictures, there are always words.
And there are always things to write about.
A couple of weeks ago, as an early Christmas gift to ourselves, Cody and I purchased a new flat screen "Smart" TV. We've been enjoying the perks of this purchase, especially our easy Netflix access and YouTube videos right there on the big screen! So last night, after I got home from my haircut, and much past when the boys should have been in bed on a school night, we all gathered in a pile in our pajamas on the middle of the living room floor and watched my old uploaded YouTube videos of the early beginnings of our little family. We watched and remembered how Jaden used to call Brandon, "Baby" as he would pile toys into Brandon's little bathtub. We watched as Jaden talked about his third birthday party and as Brandon ate goulash with his fingers and chipmunk cheeks. We laughed and longed for those younger years, all the while marveling at our boys and who they are now, as we'd sneak silent glances at them while they watched their younger selves on the big screen.
It's amazing what you can forget over time. Which is why I will keep writing.
Moments from November. Fewer pictures. But a lot more time for cozy and family and game nights and comfort food. And the anticipation of the seasonal blessings ahead.
//decorating boxes into Christmas cabins. Brandon made a door and window on his, drew Christmas lights at the top, and it now sits in his room as a hideaway for Lucy. That box takes up a lot of space in the middle of his bedroom floor, but they laugh every time they see Lucy's whiskers poking out through the window holes.
//football and basketball season has now inter-mixed and we're spending a lot of time in the Dome and McLeod Center these days. Which means this kiddo is in heaven.
//our niece Ivy turned one a week ago and we celebrated with tutu's and smash cake and party hats and cousins.
//Jaden attended a UNI basketball camp with a bunch of his buddies one Sunday night, complete with a Subway party with the Panthers and autographs afterwards. I'm loving watching these boys grow up together.
//the way our yard looked in the golden colors of autumn right before Daddy mowed it all up - just in time for the snow to start falling. It's coming...
//an impromptu family Friday night out at the Hurricane Bar & Grill. The boys had never been and I was craving wings and sauce. I dipped mine in the flavors of raspberry and garlic parmesan, Brandon colored and Jaden and Daddy watched the first night of college basketball. While we ate together, Paris was under attack, and I felt even more thankful to be right where I was.
//pre-game tradition. Dreaming of being one of them someday...
//Daddy hung our Christmas lights on the last nice Sunday of the year, Brandon "helped," and I replaced our pumpkins with our front step Christmas tree. We have plans for some early decorating this weekend before putting our big tree up next week, and I'm more than ready to lose myself in this holiday season.
//lots and lots of stir fry meals and family game nights. Pretty soon, we'll be adding our Pandora Christmas station to the mix...
little moments like...
//bowling birthday parties and laser tag birthday parties and reconnecting with daycare friends.
//a message from one of our favorite daycare teachers that he misses the boys and would love to be able to babysit this winter because summer is too far away to wait to see them again.
//a growing pile of purchased Christmas presents waiting to be wrapped and set under the tree. It's going to be a special one. I can't wait to see their faces light up.
//Christmas cards addressed and ready to be mailed when the calendar turns to December.
//my favorite time of day this time of year. Curling up at 9:00 with a warm cup of french vanilla in my hand, a shortbread cookie or two and one of our shows on the DVR. Fuzzy blankets, twinkly lights, lit candles. And though we'll be missing open windows soon enough, there's good in every season. Ready to embrace this one.
...a big week ahead. A big month ahead. Where has this year gone??!