Welcome to today’s hell.

A gift to Katie from a well-meaning aunt. While Katie does love puzzles, of course she doesn’t have the attention span for this (hell, I barely do) but she really wants to color it. If it was up to me I’d just throw it in the trash (well I’m not an idiot, I’d give it away). But guess who will end up doing it all?? Her face just about sums it up for me too. 😂

#whowantstohelp
#idonthavetimeforthis
#puzzleparty
#ihavewineandmargaritas
#whendotheygobacktoschool
#thisauntisonmyshitlist

A friend is going to come help Friday.

Santa found us in Grayling!

As is tradition, we set the kids’ phones outside their rooms so when they get up in the morning they have something to do until we get up and are ready (which is always by 7). This morning Katie was still sleeping at 7 and Owen had already had enough of his phone and was laying by the door just waiting… So Tom woke Katie up!

Katie got a note from Santa telling her he left a big present at home since he knew she was at Gramma’s—a Barbie power wheels!!

Then the kids opened their gifts from each other… Owen loved his sword, yoyo, and Lego Ninjago stuff and Katie was happy he was happy. Awwwww.

And then it was her turn to open and she LOVED what Owen got her (a Belle doll and matching Belle dress)!

And Gramma’s picture of the same scene from a different angle! So cute and so thrilled! :)

And then they put together their Lego figures they got each other.

Tom said Katie saw this wine key when they were out and about and she had to get it for me. So now whenever I want wine, I show her the key and she will bring me some. :)

And she also picked out this painted stone at a favorite store of mine in Grayling—Tip’n the Mitten!

The one thing she repeatedly asked for—a Sparty cheerleader outfit. She used to have a hand-me-down from the Besons but it is too small. This one should fit for a few years (Gramma had to take in the skirt because she’s so tiny).

Gramma Marsha had all these Barbies packed away so we held on to them until this Christmas. She loved them.

Land’s End might need to hear about this.

I had this coat when I was in high school—I think maybe my junior/senior years. Then I gave it to my Aunt Marge and she wore it forever. She just gave it back to us for Owen…and it’s a bit big but he doesn’t care. He LOVES it. I might need to write Land’s End about this one. (I also know I have one picture of me in it, but it’s black and white in a yearbook…and I have to find it. Stay tuned.)

Why I was using 1990s mousse.

When you’re away from home and didn’t pack any hair product because you were planning on getting a blowout at the beauty school but they were closed for the holidays so you have to wash your hair at home and it’s not convenient to go to town so you have to rely on the hair products that are already here and all there is is mousse from high school. 😂

So then you post it to Facebook and a friend jokes:

And I was compelled to respond with this:

I’m having a really rough time tonight.

I’m working on my annual holiday letter and going through all of 2017’s blog posts and it’s a lot sadder than I anticipated rereading all the great times we had with dear friends that we greatly miss. I know this happens EVERY time we move and it’s the way of the military life but it still surprises me and never gets easier. NEVER. 💔😥

Brunch with Santa!

Grannie wanted to do something “Santa-y” this weekend for the kids, so we found a Brunch with Santa… Unfortunately I think it might be the last year to see Santa—neither one wanted to sit on his lap (though honestly, neither has ever loved the idea) but they agreed to stand at his side. They did enjoy the crafts afterwards, though. :)