Tuesday, January 13, 2015

The Shitter's Full and Other Christmas Tales

Happiest of New Year wishes to you and yours . . . 2015 is excellent so far, but I need to recap the holidays for posterity . . . I get it if you just want to skip it!  I mean seriously, who doesn't love to talk Christmas in mid January?  Basically no one!

I made a choice not to update the blog in December.  Since I've had at least one post a month since I started, my plan was to do a holiday recap before the end of the year.  My plans changed when I got the best Christmas gift EVER from Getzy.  Are you ready for this?  I cried.  He had my blog, since inception through the last post in November, printed into a hardback book.  He used www.sharedbook.com and I love it!  So naturally, I waited until 2015 to post so the book would encompass the complete years of 2013 and 2014.  It really made me wish I posted more so that is one of my goals for 2015!
Now how about I explain the title?  Well, my mom came to visit so naturally a major household items breaks.  On Christmas Day, like straight out of the Christmas Story movie, Getzy is in the basement and curse words float up the stairs.  I go down to investigate and apparently the sump pump has picked Christmas to quit us.  The seal was broken and as God is my witness, it was awful.  We are both standing there just in awe of how gross the whole thing was, and I happily announced that the "shitter was full" like Cousin Eddie from Christmas Vacation.  Getzy was not amused.  I was not amused when we figured out how much it cost to replace it.  Merry Christmas to us! 
So let's back up and cover all the holiday events of 2014.  The holidays kick off at our house when our Elf, Lucky, comes to town.  I bought the book and elf the first year it was available (2005) at the Junior League's Mistletoe Market.  The author and her daughter were selling the books in a booth at the market and signed our copy for me!  So for 9 years our elf has focused on just moving every night and never did any shenanigans . . . and he was very happy about that.  Well, this year my daughter heard about the antics of some of her friends' elves and decided to take matters into her own hands.  She left him a very polite note to please be silly. 
Naturally Lucky couldn't disappointed her and so a season of shenanigans began with this . . .
And thank goodness for Pinterest and Facebook friends who shared great ideas!  Here are a couple of his tricks . . . nothing too crazy because being naughty is hard work!  He did manage to do something "silly" every day!
I cannot resist the Santa picture every year.  We go see the same one at a nearby mall, and it's a tradition I don't think I'll ever be able quit.  I used to make a big production over it, and then I realized that was more stress than necessary.  So now I let the kids just go as they are and while the boys don't want to go, they do it for me.  They do put their foot down about sitting on his lap.  Agreed boys.  This year Ryan asked for an X-Box, Kyle asked for headphones and Amanda asked for a camera. 
So that leads to another holiday photo . . . the annual Christmas card.  Usually I hate this task but since my photographer friend took family portraits this year, my life was made easy, and I had these out earlier than ever.  Shout out Summer!  I didn't buy enough so those closer to the end of my labels went without . . . next year I'll do better!  Pinky swear. 
And feel free to add me to your list . . . I LOVE to receive Christmas cards!  I hang them all around the kitchen and look at them often!  This year I'm buying one of those craft ring things and am going to put them all on there to set out next year. 
Decorating starts early around here because there's so much of it to be done.  Somebody (two thumbs pointing back at self) has a Clark Griswold philosophy on Christmas and way overdoes it every year.  We decorated 11 trees this year . . . and by we I mean me and Amanda because the male Getz' just aren't that into it.  South Pole elves.  Here's a tree sample . . .
They aren't super fancy but they so make me happy!  My favorite is the "travel tree" with the homemade ornament tree coming in a close second!  And of course my dog tree . . . makes me so happy!  And speaking of my dogs, I got myself some new Christmas jammies that sport my favorite canine! 
 And not to be outdone with cuteness, Abby strikes a pose!
My poker ladies enjoyed a holiday dinner out on the town!  We laughed until we cried and acted like fools . . . so much fun!
I organized a holiday party for Amanda's class the last day of school before holiday break.  Pro-tip for those over achieving room parents: I recommend organizing a gift card wreath for the teacher.  Everyone donates a gift card, and I attach them with floral picks and a cute bow!  Simple, easy and very much appreciated!
I had the brilliant idea of letting my kids have holiday parties for their friends (insert sarcasm).  The boys combined theirs and so ten middle school boys were at my house for 3 hours . . . about 2 too long!  Getzy made chicken wings, and we served Grinch hats, chips and dips and a cookie cake, at the request of the boys.  All good parties end with goodie bags so for middle school boys I included sparklers, a carabiner and candy!
The major activity for the night was poker.  I was hoping it would last longer than it did, but who was I kidding?  Their attention spans aren't that long! 
It was all fun and games until a friendly fight ensued that left one crying and one pinned to the ground.  My favorite quote of the night was from the one doing the pinning . . . "I watch a lot of WWE!"  It wasn't serious, but enough to make me edgy.  After that I took the older boys outside to run off some energy.  All is well that ends well.

I love a holiday party!  I get to dress a little fancy and hang out with my friends.  It's even easier when the kids are invited!  My friend Lynn has one every year, and it makes me happy to go!
Next up, Amanda's holiday party!  I must say . . . the girls were easier!  Amanda decided what she wanted to do which included cupcake decorating, making cupcake ornaments and an ornament exchange!  So cute!  And my mom arrived just in time to help with the fun!
We really only had one holiday adventure and that was going to see It's A Wonderful Life at an historical theater in a nearby town square!  Amanda got out of it because she was a horse camp!  And I do mean got out of it because seriously, that movie is barely a Christmas movie and kind of boring.  Gasp!  I said it.  It was cool to hear the antique organ playing Christmas carols and he invited folks up to watch him play.  We were close because shockingly, the theater was mostly empty! 
Here's a quick Christmas Eve and Christmas morning recap . . . we go to church on Christmas Eve to the early service.  There is always a candlelight singing of Silent Night and it just feels so nostalgic.  The kids always get to open one present on Christmas Eve and yes, it's usually pajamas! 
Christmas morning was way earlier than it has been in years past.  For whatever reason none of us could sleep so we got up at 5:55 a.m.  We do the Christmas pickle tradition where the person to find it gets to open the first present . . . Ryan always wins.  Then we try to open presents one at a time but Amanda usually gets ahead of us!

I always make everyone pose with their presents!  Getzy hates it and the kids don't like it, but they all tolerate it for me.  One day they will thank me when they go back and have these memories! 

Getzy wanted a new Jeep bumper and winch but too bad for him!  And of course no one asks mom to pose for the Christmas tree photo so I have to take my own.  Sad face. 
And finally, so I can remember in years to come, here are some of my new holiday decorations!  We got a new tree for the front window . . . love it!  My friend Michelle came over to put the fancy new mesh around it with me and then proceeded to make fun of all my ornaments.  It was actually a very hysterical conversation . . . no offense was taken!  Several of them are admittedly tacky so she started me on the "right" path with the cute new sleigh ornament!  Speaking of tacky, I loved the "Define Naughty" sign when I saw it, and it immediately made me think of my friend so I got her one too!  I treated myself to the Hallmark Brady Bunch one because that was my favorite show when I was a kid.  I found a Petey dog decoration that I simply could not resist.  I love a homemade gift and my friend Andrea painted the snowman picture for me . . . like with her own hands!  That makes me so happy!  And finally, I like to make ornaments and send them to all my friends from our girls' trips and naturally I keep one for myself.  Happy memories for sure!
Well, that's a wrap on the holidays of 2015!  I feel like I run like a fool every year in December, and then it's over in a flash.  I find that on Christmas Day after the presents are opened that I'm a little sad.  I'm ever grateful that my mom spent the holiday with us and wish I had more pictures with her.  I do realized how blessed we are and am grateful that Getzy works so hard for our family. 

I wish each and every one of you a healthy and prosperous 2015 . . . may all your dreams come true!
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  1. Omg... that book!!! What an amazing idea!!! I might have to do that for myself. Looks like a beautiful holiday season for you guys. Hope to see you around here some soon!!!

  2. What a great holiday you had! Love all the trees so pretty.

  3. Awww I love the blog book. That's so thoughtful.

    You guys did it up this holiday season!

    Does that cookie thing say Bro Holiday? If so LOLOLOL