last day, huh?

2 days left of Christmas vacation!  woo hoo!  :)  Our vacation was extended with 2 snow days so the kids ended up with 13 days off.  They have loved it, me too (mostly), but I am so afraid of Wednesday morning.  It might be rough.

How are you??  Did you have a happy holiday?  I hope so.  I would love to hear about them all so if you have a blog, and you haven't yet, please give us updates!!  :)  (when you can...I know how busy it has been for everyone.)

Our Christmas was pretty awesome, slighly exhausting, and so much fun.  Short recap:

Thursday, sometime in December:  snow day! cozy and fun, both big kids had sleepovers (Ruby away, James here)
Friday: snow day!  patrick back to work but still cozy and fun
Saturday:  get groceries, roads horrible, birthday party for Ruby, cookie making with James
Sunday:  family breakfast, Grandma came!  Ronan and kids over for dinner  (Annie worked)
Monday: Christmas Eve, lovely church, back to our house for spaghetti dinner and gifts with grandma, annie, ronan and kids.  tons of gifts, tons of kids, lots of noise, super fun, wine
Tuesday:  Christmas day, kids slept until 7:30!, lazy, jammies and forts and movies, Ronan and kids over for dinner (Annie worked)
Wednesday:  stayed home, boring day until more of our family got here!  super fun dinner out with my Dad & Mari, Thomas & Erin, Annie & Ronan and Patrick and James.  Ruby stayed home to help Grandma with the little kids.  She actually put Jacob to sleep!  :)  (Jacob adores Ruby.  and she, him.)
Thursday:  clean house, go swimming at Dad's hotel with everyone mentioned above (except Patrick - he had to work), lunch at Potbelly's, back to our house for our Christmas together.  Involved pizza, BOGGLE (craving more boggle with them!), beer, tons of gifts, tons of kids, lots of noise, super fun, yankee swap, slight bitterness, lottery ticket scratching, loads of garbage.  sleep.
Friday: Dad, Mari, Thomas & Erin left.  Spent day shopping with Mom.  (Annie worked) found awesome thrift scores!  James went sledding and slept at friends house.
Saturday:  Patrick left for weekend in Superior with his friends, stayed home all day and took down Christmas decorations, got rid of meanest tree ever, watched cute movie (Kit Kittredge), Annie, Ronan and kids over for dinner, impromptu trip to goodwill for me & Annie, fun, good soup
Sunday:  early church with Annie & Jacob, they had Krispy Kreme donuts for whole church, made James really sad  (he said, "nobody should feel left out at church, mom.)  :( , trip to mall, soothed him with cinnamon sticks and pretzel dog, ruby naughty, nicky screeching, left mall.  long nap for nicky, bedroom time for ruby, ruby go outside to play for hours, ruby playdate, make cake with James and new Kitchenaid mixer, watch Lion King, read in bed with James & Ruby, sleep.

Today it's just us, at home.  We might venture out to WalMart as I got some leggings there a while back that I LOVE and now I feel like I need another pair.  I am almost afraid to go look because I bet they are gone.  oh dear, the nerves.

I don't know why I am so nervous to tell you this but I am kind of nervous about it all around so I will just say it.  Patrick and I are going to Paris in a couple of weeks.  He found out at the end of November that he had to go and suggested that I go along and we ask my mom to watch the kids.  She immediately said yes, my sister & Ronan will help, too, and we are going!  We got our tickets at the beginning of December and I started googling Paris and getting guide books from the library.  Now that Christmas is over, it seems really close.  Because it is!  We have never had a vacation together, alone, since we had JAMES.  We will be gone for 10 days.  Patrick will work during the week days and we will have the evenings and 3 weekend days together.  I will have those 5 week days to wander around Paris by myself!  I was initially really nervous about that but now I am not, really.  I am super excited!!  I think I am more nervous about being away from our kids.  I know they will be fine, in the best hands, but it will be so weird.  I also know that I will be fine once we are gone.  :)  The big kids were pretty unhappy about it initially but are more resigned to it now.  They also know they will have fun with gramma, annie and ronan.   I started a packing list with things like ear plugs and eye masks on it and it seems so real now!  My palms are a little sweaty as I type this.  :)  (and I'm going to sew the eye masks, I decided.)

Here are a few holiday pictures:

 xoxo, dear ones.


  1. Oh Stephanie what amazing news! I cant wait to hear about it. Sounds like you had a wonderful holiday. You have such an awesome extended family. I am so jealous and will live vicariously through your stories and be super happy for you!

  2. Sounds like your Holiday was full and fun. How exciting...Paris! Have a blast!

  3. exciting! I think you're right that once you are on the plane, you're going to have a blast. Think of all the reading you can do and THE COFFEE!!!! and the bakeries and antiques that are older than our country. I know the architecture is amazing. I was only there for 12 hours once in Feb and it was really cold and rainy. I think you should pack leggings, long sweaters/coat, comfortable boots in dark colors and lots of accent scarfs. Seems like everyone wears black/grey in Europe. Thank you for the sweet elephant you sent Edee. She opened it and exclaimed, "El-fant"!!!!

  4. COOLLLLLLLL!!!!!!!!! You are going to have sooooooooo much fun!!!! Can't wait to see the photos.

  5. That is amazing that you get to get away with Patrick! You totally deserve all that quality time together . . .awesome!
    heidi :)


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