The Humboldt Chalet

looky looky.
here's a little keepsake from my friend Andy's christmas party a few weeks ago.
there was a real christmas tree at that party
and it smelled real good.

there were also real deer antlers just sittin' on a table
and i alllllmost stole them
since real deer antlers to set on my coffee table/bookshelf/desk
 are the only thing my heart really truly desires.*

but i didn't.

*i would also take this pretty blouse if anyone is interested in making my dreams come true.


christmas eve eve

We're back from our little vacation with Ryan's family, but I'm still feeling vacation-y. The house is a mess, and the fridge is empty, and I don't want to unpack! So, instead of catching up around the house, I'm catching up on internet stuff. 

We spent Christmas Eve Eve making preparations for Christmas day. Ryan wrapped my presents while I baked cookies. He got all fancy and wrapped one gift in actual Christmas lights, which was mostly adorable and only slightly irritating, since it literally outshone all the gifts I worked hard on wrapping. He was way proud of it.

I've got lots more pictures to go through, so I'll be back later with little blurbs about more Christmas stuff and our vacation in Mishicot.


coolest christmas present ever.

the story of my baby and my christmas tree
i am so excited.
the whole thing made me sweaty.

i am so happy that she shared my story.
it's not an easy thing to talk about.
but i'm so honored
that she helped me honor my little baby girl 
in such a cool way.
super, super cool.

and it's made me even more excited about this whole blogging thing.
ryan, too.
neat, huh?

we're in mishicot with ryan's family for a few days
and internet is hard to come by,
but when we get home i think i'll keep this up!


scroll down to find a picture of me in a nightgown i've had since high school!

Another eve, another Advent calendar activity.
This time we determined that microwave mug brownies are 
3 billion times more delectable than microwave mug cakes.

Oh yes, and also that nightgown picture:

Novum Christmas party 2011 and this is what we wore.

Records show that Ryan's work Christmas party always happens on the first bitterly cold day of the winter, and I am never wearing pants. 

Last year, the party was held at Miller Park. It was real fancy. There was a fancy chef wearing a fancy chef's hat carving a fancy beef cut. And there were cheesecake bites! Well. This year was not so fancy and I'm wondering if it's because it was held at the Harley Davidson Museum, but I'm not entirely sure? (They served apple pie squares, and they were not good.) I also ended up sitting next to a cute, pregnant wife of Ryan's co-worker, so there was some pouting. I'm not proud of it.

Here are some things I did enjoy: 
1.) The slideshow on the big screen included a photo of Ryan wearing a hard hat! I pointed and clapped every time it appeared, like a good wife should.
2.) Ryan's description of one of his co-workers: "She's a runner. She runs a lot. Like, down the hallways. Everybody laughs."

 And now, more photos!

Novum Christmas party 2009!!!
we were in college


Advent date number...

...what number are we on again?

Ok. We've hit a little roadblock.
Mostly just because I'm forgetting.

Two nights ago I sat down to enjoy a clementine
and realized we hadn't had an Advent celebration yet that day.
So we split the orange and declared it date number six!
I do think that oranges are the most Christmas-y fruit, 
so there's that.

We've got a pretty festive weekend coming up, so things should be back to swingin' in no time.


ta daaaaa.

All done! 
(Well, except for the drawer liners. I'm still not sure about which paper I'm going to use.) 
I think she's a beaut. And she's come a long way from this.

our little bedroom is getting there.

Advent date number 5.

We made Martha Stewart's deliciously thick peppermint hot chocolate.
(and nursed some sugar-induced stomach aches later on. oof!)

Advent dates 3 & 4

We wrote out our Christmas lists, 
and then, under the glow of the glorious tree,
we packed up a little Christmas/baby shower package for Gretel
while streaming the St Olaf Christmas concert.

Oh wait. did that. (It was as magical as it sounds.)

Poor sick little Ryan pulled a chair up to his favorite spot in front of the tv
and watched the Packer game.

he loved it, I'm sure.

and just like that

image found via Pinterest

I was right. The prayers, Ryan coming home, a phone call from my sister--it all helped. God is good! He gave me a brand new day today, which is helping me with yesterday. 

Yesterday was hard, but it was a long time coming...and I know that I need those days. They remind me that I am a mother, and that even though she isn't here with me, I have a daughter. They remind me that I am human and it's okay to mourn. I can't always be strong. I'll burst.

And now, because I am an optimist, I'll find some good things in yesterday: the morning snowfall, the email that told me my glasses shipped, the delicious burger I had for supper.

There. That's better.



painting by Lulie Wallace

The tears started unannounced in the shower. In my head, I began running through different parts of my morning, trying to figure out the reason they showed up--I sent a sick husband off to work, the day was cloudy and cold, it's Monday. But, no, I couldn't blame it on hormones or anything else. I could tell-- today was just a day for being sad.
It wasn't until I was out of the shower and dressed that I realized it's been two months since we met our baby. Two long months since we held her, with hearts that were so, so sad. Two months since we sat on that hospital bed, in awe of this tiny baby with perfectly formed fingernails, and knobby knees, and two tiny buds for ears that were just starting to unfold, just starting to hear my voice. I would have been 30 weeks along today, but instead of feeling the jabs from those tiny knees, I am empty. My body is healed and back to normal and so lonely. Two months not pregnant.
Of course, things will turn around. The prayers and devotions will help. I'll perk up in a few hours when Ryan comes home from work. I know tomorrow will be better, as it always is. But for now, I'm missing my baby girl and letting the day be sad.


Christmas in the Ward

On our second date of Advent, we saw the tree lighting in the Third Ward.
Also spotted: Santa, two reindeer, Ronald McDonald?, and a really cute wiener dog.


on the first date of advent

we turned on national lampoon's christmas vacation
unwrapped some candy canes
and trimmed that tree!

(we also got panda express take out, 
but i don't think that qualifies as a christmas themed activity. 
still delicious.)



Last year's Christmas season was such a bust. Between my soul-sucking, time consuming job and . . . well, that's really the only thing that kept us from soaking up the Christmas spirit all December long. It wasn't until I had a few days off right before Christmas that we were able to deck the halls and trim the tree and all that stuff. I remember Ryan gathered all of my favorite Christmas movies and let me play them all day long, one after the other, while we bustled around wrapping gifts and hanging stockings. It was actually pretty cozy. We stuffed a whole lot of jolly into those few days. However. The Martha in me was so desperately sad. There was no time for homemade cocoa! Or quiet evenings gazing at the tree after Advent services! Or pom pom garlands!

Not this year. This year, it's going to be a whole month of jolly.

And so.

I'm hanging garland from just about every surface, and baking the cookies, and doing everything I can to make the season bright. I mean, we've got 3 Advent calendars. Two of them involve chocolate. But the big one provides one Christmas-y activity each day. We're soaking it up big time this year, and it's going to be grand.