Just a little post to wish all of you a Merry Christmas.
I know the whole holiday season can be so hard, and the very pinnacle of pain is probably reached on Christmas Day itself. The holidays are different since having a child, but even now, I am finding this one a little hard to get through. It feels like someone is missing, our home feels empty, and I don’t know that things will be any different by this time next year.
And yet, I know — I know — that this season is much more difficult if you are still trying to bring home your first baby. Honey and I first started trying to build a family just before Christmas 2008. By Christmas 2009, with still no baby in sight and several rounds of failed Clomid cycles already under my belt, I was feeling lost, defeated, and desperate. I felt hopeless. There was a deep ache in my heart the whole month of December and as I looked towards the New Year. Please know that I remember what that is like. I remember.
Today and tomorrow, I hold you all close to my heart as we go through this day together. May you find some peace and comfort in knowing you are not alone, you are thought of fondly, and you are loved.
And now, something to make you smile (I hope)…
And here, my Christmas wish for all of us…
Have yourself a merry little Christmas.
Let your heart be light.
From now on,
our troubles will be out of sight.
Today, we had to say good-bye to our doggie for three weeks. She will be staying with my dad while we are in London for 10 days starting next weekend. My parents live in Idaho, six hours away from us, and so we took a road trip this morning to drop Junebug off. Thank goodness we didn’t have to drive the whole six hours in one direction. My folks agreed to meet us in the middle and, along the way, we saw this:
For a good part of our drive, there was nothing but farmland and fields (and when I think “harvest,” I think “farms,” which is why I took these photos). I’m no farmgirl, so I don’t know exactly what is growing in these photos or when they will be harvested, but I thought they were beautiful. I do so love this time of year.
I’m sorry to do this again, but this one is going to be about my daughter. Please pass if you need to. Cupcake is my muse, but I don’t mean to hurt any of you with my post. Forgive me?
And with that warning and disclaimer, I present to you the apple of my eye:
Nothing more needs to be said, I don’t think. I cherish her, as any mother does her child, whether here or gone or only a dream she holds in her heart. But I do promise this will be the last you’ll see of her face for a while. And I love each and every one of you for the support you always offer, even when I publish a post like this.
We love nothing more than comfort around here. Sweats. Coffee. Mac and cheese. The thermostat cranked up. We like to be warm and cozy (as we spell it on this side of the Pond). But really, the one who covets all things cozy is our sweet Shih tzu-Maltese doggie, whom I’ll call Junebug (one of the many nicknames we use in this house):
On the left there, you have Junebug on the pile of pillows where she likes to hide when she’s had enough of the hugs and hard pats from my daughter. And on the right, she is wrapped in her favorite blanket, which also happens to be my favorite blanket (which I recently mentioned here). Isn’t she sweet? Don’t you just want to snuggle up with her? I do! And I do it often!
Well, you know what they say: home is where the heart is.
I know it’s lame to say, but it’s true. And for me, my heart is where Home is as well. Our home is a fairly modest one and certainly a starter home that we will outgrow if we ever have all the children that I have dreamed of for so long. But it is the first house my husband and I have ever owned, and it’s where our family began, so it will always have a special place in my heart. I will remember it fondly, even long after we have left it behind.
Ever since I realized that the cause of my erratic basal body temperatures is probably stress, I have been making an effort to add some balance back to my life. This is not easy for me. I am not the type of person who sits still. I am on the go all the time. If I complete my “to do” list for the day, I move on to my list for tomorrow. If I can’t find something to do, I create something. And even when I watch the tube, I am always working on a project, whether it is this blog or my scrapbooks or dividing up vitamins into my pill box. But, while it feels good to be efficient and to accomplish a lot, it often leaves me frazzled, overwhelmed, and stressed out. Because there is never any break, never any down time, never any period of recovery or feeling like there is an end to anything.
So a couple weeks ago, I decided this needed to change. I started sitting down just to read, or watch TV, or spend time with my family — and nothing else. No working on chores, completing projects, or checking off lists. Just enjoying a moment of peace and of balance. And during these moments, which I try to carve out two or three times a day, this is what it usually looks like for me:
My favorite blanket, a mug of something hot (decaf coffee before ovulation, cocoa afterwards), a good book (trashy or thought-provoking, depending on my mood), the remote control (so I can most likely watch Friends, which still makes me laugh my a** off), and our sweet, cuddly dog. That’s all I need to give me some balance and restore me so that I am ready to go on.
I love autumn. My favorite season by far. I mean, how can you not adore it with those gorgeous colors, and the cozy sweaters, and the smell of pumpkin spice in the air? Makes me melt just to think of what’s in store.
But I will admit to this: I love autumn just a little bit less since moving to our new city two years ago. Because with the fall (and winter) season, come lots of rain, lots of wind, and lots of power outages. We live in a neighborhood filled with trees (the lot next door and across the street are completely tree-covered with no houses at all) and power lines are above ground…a bad combination. And I was completely unprepared for this when we moved in. Our first fall/winter in our home brought us a total of 12 power outages. That was the same autumn we brought our daughter home from the hospital. She had been home for a total five hours when we lost electricity for 18 hours. For the first time ever. Can you imagine what that did to a brand new mom? I was a wreck and, ever since, the possibility of an outage sends shivers up my spine and puts fear into my heart. Especially because last year, while we had less power outages than the year before, one of them lasted for almost six days. Our house got so cold that we eventually had to go stay with a friend. Thank God for her generosity.
So the long and short of it is that, while I now hold some dread in my heart as autumn begins, it only takes one glance at the colorful leaves of the season to remind me why I love it so:
The colors aren’t quite as vibrant as I like them since it’s so early in the season, but how can you not love that half-moon peeking through the changing trees as dusk approaches? Autumn, I love you.