Thursday, February 22, 2018

Family Matters . . .

I am very close to being caught up now – I think the only thing left is to run through the highlights of what the family has been doing over the past few months . . .

20171028_121009_resized_1 20171028_121716_resized_1

This was at the end of October – Emily wanted to do a 5K (walk, not run).  She and I walked around my hometown (which is on the side of a hill so it’s good exercise) for weeks leading up to it.  And then the rains came – the entire trek was an absolute mudbath through fields of muck.  It was miserable while we did it – but I told Ryan and Emily halfway through that ten minutes after we finished, one of them would say it was fun.  And I was right . . .


My last driving lesson – my brother-in-law’s family always comes in for the holidays, and in three of the past four years one of his daughters has come in with a learner’s permit.  So we go for a drive to Jungle Jim’s – one of the most eclectic groceries I have ever seen.  It’s a place where you can find just about anything – has sections for items from lots of different countries – and it’s like an amusement park setting.  It’s also in an area where the apprentice driver can go on back roads one way, and on interstates the other – so it’s great to experience lots of different types of driving.  This year’s student was my niece, Natalie (right) – and Emily decided to come along for the ride.

2017amelia 20171223_155729_resized_1

The passage of time – the picture at left is from Christmas Eve Eve last year – seemed only fitting to recreate it this year with the guest of honor . . .

20171223_120557_resized_1 20171223_121552_resized_1
20171223_143430_resized 20171223_125804_resized_1

For an 11-month-old’s first Christmas, there is a lot of exploring to do . . .


And lots of waiting arms to climb into . . .


This was our first family Christmas picture with a baby in it since 1994 – and our first family Christmas picture with a girl baby in it ever.

20171223_145818_resized_1 20171223_151351_resized 20171223_143415_resized

My kids and their new toys – Ryan has a thing for vintage Star Wars lunch boxes, and Emily has become a fan of all things knitting . . .

20171223_160217_resized_1 20171223_161215_resized_1

And of course, there were cookies – lots and lots of Christmas cookies.  This is our oldest family tradition, dating back to the days when it was just Mom and Dad and me.  There was a time when we thought December was too hectic and we might have to discontinue this, but all three boys howled in unison that it was their favorite holiday event.  So it lives on.

20171223_143145_resized_1 20171223_093538_resized_2

My niece Jordan was extremely happy – this is the first time she has had a chance to eat the cookies she decorated.  Jordan is gluten and dairy-free – but I discovered this Sugar Cookie Mix on that trip to Jungle Jim’s.  I have looked for new ideas and recipes that work for her ever since she joined our family.


This was the first delicacy I discovered for her a few years ago – gluten-free dairy-free snickerdoodle cupcakes.  I hadn’t iced them yet when I took this pic to tantalize her.  They are so good, and you would never guess that they have no dangerous stuff in them.

20171223_154530_resized_1 cookies cookies1

More cookie decorating shots . . .

cookies2 cookies3 cookies4

And more goodies that came from my kitchen over the holidays.

20180128_162006_resized 20180128_152710_resized

Finally, Amelia’s first birthday was in late January – and it brought together both sides of her family for a celebration.

20180128_162519_resized 20180128_105142_resized 20180128_151014_resized

Conner is a Star Wars person – Gina is a Harry Potter person.  So Amelia will likely be a hybrid kid – and I figured a collection of Star Wars children’s stories would be fitting.  I can tell that Emily sees Amelia a lot – they usually end up in each other’s arms quickly.

And with that, I think we are finally caught up.  I can now start watching for more current events to report . . .

No comments:

Post a Comment