Things That Make Me Happy (other than the obvious things like husband, children and grandchildren)
1. Boots. When you wear boots, no one can see that your right ankle is chronically swollen. Or that you're wearing an ankle brace. Plus, they're supportive!
2. Internet shopping. Seriously - do you know how much time I've saved shopping at home, rather than trudging to the mall? A lot, that's how much. And so much free shipping!
3. Riding my bike. L and I rode 10 miles yesterday. I was tired, but it makes me feel so good. Makes all my aches go away.
4. Going downstairs for a bottle of water, or lunch, or whatever, and seeing the lights on the Christmas tree twinkling. That corner always looks so plain for awhile after the Christmas tree gets put away. For now, the room has such razzle dazzle that turns dreamy when all of the other lights are turned off.
5. The lights strung over the front door and across the porch. Now you can see our beautiful wreath at night. I was wishing on Saturday morning that we had some lights there, and when I came home from my hair appointment, L had strung them all up as a surprise. I love that man.
6. Christmas music 24/7 on Pandora. I've created my own little station and I'm loving it. It ranges from Michael Buble to Glee to Peter, Paul and Mary. For one whole month I never get tired of listening to it.
7. Christmas cards in the mail. Now, mind you, I don't send any - but I just love to get them. It really cheers me up to see them in the mailbox. Maybe I will send them next year.
8. Seeing presents under the tree. There aren't very many, and they are not for me (except one from Tim and Autumn that is for both L and me) but it makes me excited to look at them. And I get even more excited when something else arrives from the Internet that I can wrap and put under there. See #2.
9. Thinking about the week after Christmas - a whole week that I don't have to work! I don't get paid either, but we won't think about that. A whole week that I don't have to work! So far, L and I have planned a movie day for December 26th, and my mom and I have a day planned for December 28th. It will be a good week.
10. See's Candy. Soon it will be time for the annual trip to See's and our yearly box of chocolates. Maybe we'll share it on Christmas Day, maybe we won't. Half the fun is getting it out every night and having a piece. Or two.
11. My red flannel Christmas pajama pants. Katie made them for me last year, and they are so warm and cozy. She made L a pair too! Here we are relaxing in them. Don't mind the Halloween socks.
This year I am hosting Christmas Eve for my family at our house. I'm gathering thoughts and ideas of what I want to do. Our house is very small and so there's no room for a sit down dinner for so many people. We're making it a sort of Open House - people can arrive when they can and leave when they need to. Everyone will bring something and I will make a big pot of chili with all the fixings (sour cream, cheese, green onions, and anything else I can think of) so we'll have something hearty to eat. It won't be fancy, but it will be fun. And we'll have Carmel Apple Cider. Mmmmmm....
What are your Christmas Eve traditions? Where will you be - home? Visiting family?
It's a good time of year, but a busy time. I feel like I'm in a good place, though. I've been able to get the shopping done, the church Christmas dinner is behind me (thank goodness!), and so now I can just enjoy the season. That means a lot. I'm usually crazy up until the last minute, and it's all gone before I can take a breath and enjoy. I hope you're all able to take some time to look around, take in some Christmas spirit, hug your family, kiss that special person under some mistletoe. Sing some carols, read the Christmas story (the REAL one!) and follow it up with The Night Before Christmas. Or the Nightmare Before Christmas - whatever your taste. Look up into the starry night, imagine each one of us doing the special things we love to do this time of year, and send up a quick prayer of thanks and gratitude that we're all able to share in this special time together - each in our own way. All of you, my blogging friends, are like another sparkly gift under my tree, and I feel so fortunate to have received each one. So I guess that makes #12 of Things That Make Me Happy.