This week my husband was on a very different schedule than normal.  Rather then 48-hour fire shifts, he was in a class where he finished each evening.  In anticipation, I told myself he would be gone every night.  I figured he would finish class late and not want to fight traffic.  To my surprise, he was home 4 out of 5 nights — a fun treat for us all!

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Another fun treat — waking up to snow-covered mountains after the rain.  This was the view from my office window.  Brilliant blue.  Brilliant white.  Chilly hair.  Happy me!

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The last remnant of our Christmas is the beautiful paper whites my mom brought for us.  They are in full bloom, and stinking up the kitchen nicely!  I just love the enamel bowl she brought for them, as well… they transfer perfectly into our Valentine decor!

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After a shopping spree at Target with Malachi one rainy day this week, we decided it was time to pull out the Valentine decor.  There were SO many cute items in the dollar section that I went a little bit crazy.  Pulling down the bins is always so much fun for the kids, and a perfect motivator to have them clean ahead of time!

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Kissing the cat… random.

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School went surprisingly well this week, despite the rain and cold.  (It just made our Thankful Thursday tea party even cozier).  There were some trials with attitudes that made me sad, but in the end worked out for the better.  Somehow I always forget that the trials are what grows us and keeps us humble!  Thank you for the trials, Lord… even though they aren’t fun!

Today we watched “The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” that I found at the grocery store for $5.99.  It was even more exciting as I was at the store with just Natalie, and the two of us happen to be just finishing that book.  The fireplace roared and the 6 of us cuddled up on the couch with our gummies.  I feel refreshed…  Happy weekend to you!

The Puzzle

Well, then…. do you remember the puzzle that we dumped out on New Year’s Eve?  Basically, it looked like this:

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And then I became obsessed over it… and worked… and worked…

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and worked…  (it didm’t help that it was cold and rainy outside and warm and cozy inside… or that I was exhausted from the “busyness” of Christmas break and just wanted to rest… or that my personality cannot stand to walk by an unfinished puzzle!)  So, alas…

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I completed the puzzle!  I even had a little help from my 2nd daughter and husband.  HOORAY!  I told my kids the word “psychedelic” meant colorful, though I knew it was more crazy than that.  To satisfy my own curiosity, I looked it up only to find it had nothing to do with color.  It means “pertaining to drugs.”  Oops.  Anyway, now that the crazy puzzle is over, I am hoping to be more productive.  We did accomplish school this week… even if I did have to answer math problems while searching for a puzzle piece.  🙂

See, Daniel… if we just had a cabin, I could move all our puzzles up there and I wouldn’t have any puzzles to distract me from my duties here at home.  And, we would have fun putting them together while up in the cabin with the snow falling outside.  Win, win!

Happy New Year!

The new year is here!  I always picture myself so relaxed in the new year… the string of holidays and birthdays behind me.  I plan to journal, pray, reflect, and be super organized for the New Year.  But, life never seems to slow down, does it?  We get the house in order just in time to hit the school books, extra-curricular activities, and all that once again.  (Thankfully I have a new Nespresso machine from Christmas to help keep me going!)

School starts again Monday.  I have a list a mile long to accomplish tomorrow.  But, I do feel ready to get back into a routine.  For now, here is our New ear’s Eve: a dollar-size pancake breakfast, homemade pizza and traditional puzzle making with our dear friends, and a repeat of this lemon cake to use up some of our plethora of lemons, but also because it is THAT good!

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For the record, we finished almost none of the puzzle and went to bed far before midnight.  (Though, I may have stayed up until midnight last night and am getting close again tonight because the crazy psychedelic 1,000 piece fish puzzle has me in a trance!)

Happy New Year!