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Wednesday, November 30, 2016


Today I threw out the last of our Thanksgiving leftovers.  I have managed to "not cook" for almost a week now, but my family is in silent (and not-so-silent) protest.  I did manage to pick up more milk yesterday, but a grocery run is in order.

We thoroughly enjoyed Thanksgiving with our family from Missouri and an international friend who had no place else to go.  He may have been a bit overwhelmed by the clan chaos, but I'm so glad he joined us.

I'm so very grateful for my family - flawed, blended, strained and all.  Now that our house is cleared out, I'm left with the memories which are the real treasures.  Often, we invest so much energy and anticipation preparing and working to make a day feel perfect, that it's easy to miss the actual event. Guard your heart and mind against that trend as you prepare for Christmas.  

After all the hustle and bustle of Thanksgiving at my home, I can be left with a feeling of loss when my far-away family returns home.  We aren't planning to visit again over the holiday season.  Instead, I'm choosing the focus on the time we got to spend together, to be thankful they all made the long trip to visit and that we were all healthy around the table this year.

I often think negatively of "leftovers," and I certainly don't like the thought of being a leftover.  Still, what's left after the jubilant celebration is the stuff of real life: the one who helps take out all the accumulated trash, the one who helps with the umpteenth load of dishes, the ones to empty the same dishwasher day after day after day.  What's left is so, so valuable.


Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Elementary School Christmas Gift Ideas - Girl Edition!

 This girl is the "spicy" in our family and she makes her wishes known clearly. She is still into all things pink and loves anything artsy.  The list could have been much longer, but these desires make the top!  

Analog is all the rage and she loves this Instax camera.  Don't forget the accessories!

Moo Mixer Supreme

Sew Mini Treats

Pom Pom Puppies

Platform Swing


Pedicure Spa

Snow Cone Maker

Pom Pom Wow

Bath Fizze Kit

Scented Markers


Inexpensive Wireless Headphones

Metallic Hair Chalk

Simon Game


Coming soon - Stocking Stuffers and Best Books List
Don't miss these lists for the boys:
Christmas Gifts for Middle School Guys
Christmas Gifts for Elementary Boys

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