Reflections for the Season :: Vol.2

{16 days to go}

...our charlie brown christmas tree - it looks like someone took a large bite out of the entire left side, and the branches are so sparse you can actually see *through* it during the day. i much prefer the glowy magical nighttime look. it's downright pretty! oh, and the curtain isn't on fire - the tree lights are actually icicle lights we got at the tilly, and they're strung along the floor to the outlet on the wall... (ps. isn't our tree skirt fabulous? i love it so much. also a tilly special... we're so classy 🙂

Oh my. 16? Seriously? And 10 days until we fly back to ON for Christmas. Oh my. Well so much for blogging regularly during these days leading up to Christmas. Oh well. I’ve been sorta busy. Doing what, you ask? Well, uh, preparing for Christmas, ironically enough. I just haven’t had a spare moment to blog about it! Plus, some of the stuff that’s occupying my time is top-secret… so I can’t blog about it right now.

Advent started on November 28. I’ve never really done much for advent, other than watch people light candles and do readings in church while growing up. The Christian calendar is not really a big deal in most Protestant traditions, which is rather unfortunate. As our pastor said in church a few weeks ago – we do Christmas, Easter, and uh, what else is there? Oh yeah… Thanksgiving?

So, Advent. A time of preparation for the coming of Christ. This year we decided to do a few ‘adventy’ things to help us focus on the right things during this season. I’ll blog about them a little later when I can add some photos. For now… my brain is feeling full and my blog is looking sparse, so I give you: some random bullet points…

1. My darling honey is making beef stroganoff for supper and it smells divine (using grass-fed organic meat!).

2. I am seriously considering giving up gluten (because of suspected sensitivities) , but am seriously doubting I have the necessary will-power.

3. 125.2lbs. Feeling great (except for the belly flab that kind of has a mind of it’s own).

4. Our tree is up (real, of course). Got it at Racetrack Gas – they had gorgeous ones for $60, and misshapen, see-through ones for $25… guess which one we got? It’s a Charlie Brown tree, and we love it – it’s… special 🙂

5. Isaac has been watching too much TV (as in, Veggie Tales) lately. I put it on when I go upstairs to put Ally down for a nap… which sometimes takes a bit of time to make sure she’s settled. Sometimes I stay in her room for 15-20 minutes in case she stirs so I can just pat her back and get her back to sleep. We’re working on making sure naps are at least one hour each, otherwise she gets fussy and overtired by the end of the day. So… I put on a Veggie Tales to keep Isaac occupied while I’m upstairs… which I feel guilty about, because ideally TV would be a never/rare occurrence in our house, but on the other hand, I like having him alive and the house not burned down (he’s um, an active/curious child…). Any ideas?

6. I’ve decided on a New Year’s Resolution. Actually I’m deciding between two (I’m only doing one…). I want to learn to either knit or sew really well. I know the smallest bit of basics for each, but I want to actually be really good at one of them (ie. be able to knit a sweater, or sew clothes for the kiddos).

7. I have a goal that is a little scary, but I think writing it here will help keep me accountable. For Christmas 2011, I want all of our gifts to be handmade. (If you normally get a gift from me, don’t worry, this doesn’t mean that you will be getting a friendship bracelet and a badly knitted potholder… I hope). I’ve been stumbling across lots of awesome little ideas lately!

8. I’m feeling very torn on the whole Santa thing (do we… hype it up/tell the kids he’s real/tell the kids he’s not real but it’s fun to pretend/ignore him/banish him as ‘he-who-must-not-be-named’…) OK, the last one I was kidding about. But seriously… the whole thing is somewhat confusing. I’m leaning towards not really saying anything about him and letting them come to their own conclusions, and telling them he’s not real if they ask me straight out (which won’t happen this year). Hmm… this could be a whole post in and of itself…

9. No cute/inspiring/neat ending. Incidentally, that’s often what keeps me from blogging more often- feeling like I always have to have an introduction, a body, and a conclusion. (That’s what I get for going to university? Sheesh!).


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15 Responses to Reflections for the Season :: Vol.2

  1. Lola says:

    I love everything about this post so I’ll respond in bullets.

    1. We’re weight twins. Except now is when I start to plummet into the bony zone but it always bounces back up after my babies are a year old or so.

    2. I’m pretty sure you could be a pretty fantastic knitter because I saw your cute little booties you were making.

    3. Ya, on the santa thing. When you decide tell me and I’ll just copy you because I don’t feel like dealing with it.

    4. Gluten free doesn’t take too much willpower once you establish some good recipes that involve insane amounts of sugar occasionally. Just kidding… sort of.

    5. Never reference secret things on your blog unless you want me to call you and harass you until you tell me.

    6. I sure wish we could have had more time together before I moved.

    • redandhoney says:

      Oh Lola. Way to make me laugh/be sad all at once. As I wasn’t already enough of an emotional weirdo. Yay for being weight twins! Miss you lots.

  2. Krista says:

    No inspiring ending required. I am still in awe at the whole handmade gift thing. You go girl.

  3. Cheryl says:

    I love your Charlie Brown tree. We had a few of these growing up. Ours were so bad we put a 4L ice cream dish full of rocks on one of the tree stand feet so the tree wouldn’t fall over….therefore I think yours is doing well!! Oh and most importantly its REAL.

    • redandhoney says:

      Hahaha! Cheryl, that’s hilarious! …a 4L ice cream bucket – sounds like something my mom would do 🙂

  4. Joy says:

    Beth, you are inspirational! Your authenticity is always like a breath of fresh air! I LOVE how you’re trying so hard to be intentional about life, to live simply and fully. That’s my goal – to live simply and fully. I’m still trying to figure out exactly what that entails; it looks different for everyone. If you’re looking for opinions, may I offer a couple: 1) don’t beat yourself up for letting Isaac watch a little TV; it’s perfectly acceptable and often very beneficial in small doses (may I recommend GodRocks [], an awesome Canadian gang with cartoons and songs that are mostly Scripture, word-for-word and highly entertaining at the same time); and 2) we’ve been dealing a lot with the Santa issue this year, we think it’s pretty harmless and fun at this stage, whenever Chandler (6) asks, we always respond with “what do you think?”. I think he’s already getting to the point where an actual Santa isn’t logical to him, but he really wants to believe…
    Anyway, you’re doing a great job, my Friend! Thanks for being real! Blessings on you and your sweet little family!

  5. naomi says:

    I did handmade gifts this year – of course it does require a bit of shopping at the same time but I made dishclothes, blueberry jam, and cookies. The dishclothes I started in April, I managed to get so quick at it I could finish one in an evening. The jam took me all of 2 hours, if that. And cookies are always a commitment, but whatever the recipe the easiest thing I have found is to always double it.
    ps – Squeaker is kicking around as I type this. 😀

  6. Krista says:

    I’m torn about the Santa thing. Thankfully Stephen hasn’t really asked yet, and I do plan on telling my kids the true, but not to tell other kids who do believe, but at the same time other parents make me feel like I’m taking some of the spirit out of Christmas if I don’t let my kids believe in Santa, and they can do Santa and celebrating the real meaning as well. I don’t know…I didn’t believe it Santa but still loved Christmas.
    Wish I was creative like you. We are so tight for me and I’m stressed about getting gifts, but I’m really not creative/artistic at all.


  7. thismama says:

    I love this post…as I always love it when I see that you have written. I am pretty sure that we are not weight twins! but I think that our brains and hearts are very similar.
    Gluten free is actually starting to become more fun now, I like a challenge and my delish brownies really inspired me.
    I love, love, love homemade gifts
    If you decide to take up sewing, let me know. We can sew together. Although I really want to learn how to knit.
    On the Santa thing, A saw him for the first time the other day and was impressed but she knows that he was playing dress up:). Kind of like a snow man, really fun but not going to last. Dan and I were just talking yesterday about how it is sad that Santa is “fun” and Jesus is not. Why is Jesus “serious” and Santa what really brings kids joy at Christmas. Celebrating Jesus is fun, sharing the love that He has given us is fun and I see the joy that it brings us every day! Anyways, I think I am inching toward a soap box so I will step away now.
    And your tree is really fun!

    • redandhoney says:

      missy, i also think our brains and hearts are very similar 🙂 i love that! you’ve inspired me to “hype up jesus”… i think i’m really going to emphasize the “jesus’ birthday party” thing – especially because isaac is totally enamored with “birthday parties” right now.
      PS – i love soapboxes… feel free to step on up 🙂

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