Monday, December 31, 2007

2007: The Year in Review

This New Year's Eve finds me flying solo...hubby is working, kids are at Nana's and Papa's and I'm trying to de-Christmastize my house. It is quiet and sorta sad to be alone on New Year's Eve. As I look back at 2007 (after all isn't that what you are supposed to do on the last day of the year), I think it was a year of personal milestones. A lot of fun and good things happened and were celebrated and a couple of things touched my heart in ways I didn't know possible.

A United States President was buried in our city. We did it right.
I turned 35. (is this possible?)
We celebrated 10 years of marriage in Mexico in Feb.
Geno and Amy got married in a snowstorm.
We had great softball and baseball seasons.
T-bird's art was represented in a school art show and a local pizza parlor (for a year).
We went to Traverse City for Easter with Nan and Pop.
Our baby turned big boy in May. Where does the time go?
Cal rocked the dance recital!
Lots of running and running and running......
We rocked out at Poison!
We had family time at the cottages on Clear Lake and at the Upper 10.
Fun with George and Jen on the 4th!
Bobby Kozminski was killed in the line of duty. Unforgettable. Period.
Hunter family reunion in G.Haven.
Class reunion at the Red Dog!
Tube Fest #1 (hopefully there will be a #2)
We partied at Camp Osto all summer!
Lots of poker games for Osto.
Scored trophies at the Kevin Marshall Memorial Run (again, is this possible?)
Joanne and JD got hitched in style at the Detriot Yacht Club.
Pulaski days (I am now too old for this loud a*s drunk fest).
Chooch started preschool!
Our favorite neighbors moved away (we miss you).
Mustache contest!
Cal soloed in the Christmas program
Ugly Sweater contest!
Merry Christmas (even though the kids were all sick)

Final thoughts...
I think I like contests. I wish I would win one that had a lot of money as a prize. HA!

I'm still wearing a black rubber bracelet on my wrist. All the blue is gone, save for a tiny bit. I did not know Koz. I never met him. I never really recall hearing his name. Somehow still he changed my life. There are moments about this that are etched into me...moments I will never forget...the call out, the waves and waves and waves of officers who came to pay respects, my brother-in-law, the honor guard, the processional lined with people - so silent - in tribute, and finally the cemetary. Proud, sad, strong. I'm still wearing this bracelet for Osto. For Mark. For all my friends in the GRPD. You are the thin blue line. I wear it as a reminder for what you do, and for what I can do. I am the other side of that, the safe haven, the chaos, the kids, the place to forget the bad and live the good.

Ten years is a long time to be married. I think we finally figured it out. It gets better and better. You finally give up on changing the other person and just accept that they will never put the sugar bowl away or clean up the pan they cook their taquitos on. You learn to just get over your damn self and learn that that is the way it is and if you want the laundry picked up then you pick it up yourself. The good is way good and the bad is forgettable. (Life is fun with you Osto! I can't wait for the next 10...)

Kids grow up. They start to learn about people and ask interesting and engaging questions. They learn that sometimes life isn't fair. That people can be mean and cruel. I'm learning that I can't protect them forever. They are cool little people. I want to know them. They are funny, smart, amazing and beautiful. I want Chooch to stay 3 forever. He promises me that he will still kiss me and be my "baby" when he is big enough to give me piggy back rides. But time has a way of ticking...

I will remember 2007 and look forward to 2008.
Thanks for reading my blog and I hope you stick around to enjoy and participate in the frivolity and the fun!

Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!


Friday, December 21, 2007

The calm before the storm

Ahhh...Christmas Vacation. I remember that last day of school well before the holiday set in, you could feel the excitement in the air. I spent time with a bunch of fourth graders today and its good to know things haven't changed.

I'm lucky this year that I have some time off too, so I have that "calm before the storm" feeling tonight. The high pitched fever of shopping and buying is over, the presents are wrapped, the work parties are over, school's out and I'm starting to feel the true spirit of Christmas. You know what it is really about...that sense of wonder. In a few fleeting days that will be gone, the gifts will be the stars of the show, the joy (or disappointment) will be written on little faces and the chaos of the clean up will ensue.

But for the next 3 or 4 days it is all about family, baby Jesus, the tree, the spirit of giving, the anticipation, the growing piles of presents and the hope that they will bring our heart's desire or at the very least Guitar Hero III.

So in your hectic days ahead try to enjoy the wonder of Christmas and live in the moment.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

1977 JC Penney Catalog

You may have seen this floating around email, but I thought it was worth another look. Click here to talk a walk down memory lane...circa 1977.

No doubt, you will remember perusing the Penney's catalog if you are my age. Its the funked up styles that are killing me today. What were people thinking? The comments are really funny too.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Ugly Christmas Sweater Contest

The First (and maybe last) Ugly Christmas Sweater Contest was held Sunday night. The winner didn't have to purchase his/her own beverages, so there was some incentive!

Here are the top finishers...
Awwe, who can resist an adorable teddy bear, especially one outlined in glitter glue or when this hot guy is wearing it?
A classic...reindeer and the north star...lookin' sharp, George!

This sweater resembles one I owned in eigth grade *gasp*, and thd goose and poinsettia combo was an early front runner!

But the clear winners were....Mr. and Mrs. Christmas as shown here...Can you say "cheese"!?!

O Christmas Tree!

We cut down our Christmas Tree on Saturday. Its a beauty! I think I want to own a Christmas Tree farm when I grow up. You know, with the hot chocolate and the crackling fire pit and a horse drawn wagon ride to pick out your tree. (That is NOT the experience I had, but that's what I'd do). Fresh wreaths and an old fashioned tree shaker too.

Cutting down and then trimming the tree is one of my favorite traditions. I know my family loves it too. Seeing our favorite ornaments (and I get a new one every year on this day too!) and hanging them up really is the start of the holiday season for me.

Wednesday, December 05, 2007

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday!
This is circa Oct. 1987.
I'm thinking home coming???
Nice hair...
Love you!

Wake up old man!

Osto was giggling yesterday about his new alarm clock. When I finally saw it last night, I actually gasped. It is HUH-UGE! I've attempted to capture this monstrosity but the photo doesn't really do it justice.

You could also land an airplane by this thing it is so bright.

I think this is a sure sign that he is getting old.

These numbers are 1.5 inches high!


Tuesday, December 04, 2007

We're in the spirit, the holiday spirit

We went to the kid's christmas program tonight. Its hard to see the separation of church and state at a public school that holds its christmas program in a church and sings songs about Christ. Not that I'm complaining...just interesting how things are done a little differently in my ultra-conservative, ultra-religious town. Wonder how long that will last?

After arriving 45 minutes prior to show time, I found there were no - repeat - no seats available. What is this bullsh*t about "saving" a whole row of seats? I mean, I'm no holiday show virgin so I guess I should expect this mayhem but still every year I'm surprised at the gall of these people! I was so tempted to just plop myself down on one of these "reserved" spaces and play dumb just to see the shock & awe. But I trooped upstairs and found surprising good seats in the balcony (shhhhh).

Anyways, the show was great! The kids did cute numbers about puppies, reindeer, fruitcake, and some standards. Baby girl had a little solo part in one of the numbers and she belted it out and wasn't even nervous! She did awesome. Tyler's group did a version of Silent Night with flashlights. Really cool. Osto and I were so proud of them. Definitely put me in the holiday spirit. We took pictures, but from our lovely nosebleed seats its hard to tell anyone apart!

Sunday, December 02, 2007

Boys being boys...

My oldest son decided it would be a good idea to "train" my youngest in the fine art of "battling". This involves all types of kicking, punching, wrestling moves, and sometimes weaponry. This has been going on for months and the Chooch is now quite skilled in the art of battling and is quite accomplished with a foam sword as well. As long as they weren't crying, nor propelling themselves off my furniture (at least when I was watching), I really didn't care about said battles.

(You can view the nonsense here).

Well, as of last week all battles have ceased at Camp Osto. My oldest came running up stairs while I was cooking dinner with blood running down his face. (Now you have to understand that this kid cannot stand the mere thought of blood, let alone the sight of his own. I am more afraid that he is going to pass out and that the eggs I was trying to cook were going to burn in the pan in the meantime). Anyways, the Chooch hit him in the head with a toy fishing pole and put a little, but bloody, puncture in his noggin. Ugh, boys. I told Bird it was his own fault that he had trained the Chooch so well...

And the winner is....