Around Here Week 51: December 16-22

Wednesday, December 26, 2018

A glimpse into what it is like to live in our house just this sparkling, cozy, crazy minute.

took this photo to show him how bad he needs a haircut and he went full Blue Steel on me. LOL

Intentional Outdoor Hours: 526+ hours (of 1000)
yeah, up only about 20 minutes (laughable) but holiday cuckoo madness and freezing temps.

Reading Eleanor Oliphant is Completely Fine and laughing out loud for real most of the time. Eleanor is so raw and hilarious with her observations of the world. #mood

Crushing on  my handsome husband who stepped out of his comfort zone and agreed to be the conductor for the Polar Express Party that the first grade puts on annually at the kids' school. Gemma was so proud that her Daddy was the conductor and B actually had a lot of fun with the kids, punching their Polar Express tickets and walking them to each activity. (CT Elementary PTA, you are a.may.zang!!)

Trying to get the Rustman feeling better. Aunt Kitty came to the rescue when he needed picked up from daycare one day for diarreaha and a fever and then Daddy worked from home one day because it was still going on the next day. He held it together enough to get through the last two days of daycare, but is still struggling on the diarreaha and sporadic puking front (see below). Poor kid. He bounces right back after an episode (thank the good Lord) but he (and clean-up momma) are very ready for him to be healthy again. Bring on full BRAT diet (bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast)

Cracking some next level mom codes on Wednesday night. If you follow me on Instagram, then you already know. Short version - I took 4 kids by myself to Grey's Game, then Walmart 6 days before Christmas (for gift exchange and snacks for school Christmas parties), and then out to dinner only to catch Rusty's vomit IN MY HAND and keep eating. yeah, rocking those low standards like a mom of 4 kids does. My answer always to the question, "I don't know how you do it" is a consistent "lower standards" and my Wednesday evening was a perfect example of that. You just can't get worked up about stuff with four kids, ya just do what you can do and somehow little by little it holds together with elmer's glue and chewed gum. There's no secret, it is lowering your standards as far away from perfect as possible.  HAH.

Receiving incredible, amazing news after a 6month scary, worrisome journey. Brandon and I have repeated over and over that we want not a single thing for Christmas - we are so grateful and relieved to finally exhale after it has felt like we've been holding our breath- that who needs gifts when health is the only thing that matters.  Thank you so so much prayer warriors who have had our family on your list. Please continue, we still need them as the road is still long and challenging, but it has a light at the end of the tunnel now and we know that it is in large part to the support and love and good vibes that have been sent out by you. thank you so much. best Christmas gift we could receive by far.

Celebrating the Winter Solstice at Uch and Kevin's official housewarming party. It looked so lovely in the glow of the season and I felt so proud of her for how beautifully decorated and welcoming she has built her home. #bigsisprobs  Winter Solstice might just be my secret favorite day of the year - I am definitely ready for a little more daylight everyday - YES PLEASE.

Feeling shocked and overwhelmingly relieved that I passed the Spanish Praxis on the first try! Especially considering I was wholly prepared to take that thing again because of what a disaster of the day was and feeling sick (and being out of school for 11 yrs! is quite common to fail it at least once because it is such a beast of a test, the online stories are staggering, hah) But I got the news Friday afternoon and literally googled again the PA passing score because I didn't believe it (HAH). You can bet my score report is currently displayed proudly on the fridge. Now it's time to apply for some online grad classes (bleh) to get this certification wrapped up finally!

Enjoying seeing Violet in her own element at her bestie's birthday party (Grady). She is almost always just carted around wherever anyone else in the family needs to go - but she got to go to Grady's birthday party and have fun! #thirdchildprobs

Christmas'ing at Abba and Chum's house on Saturday. We are blessed with a big family who all wants to properly celebrate and be grateful for the year - so my Mum and Dad opt (thank you) to have a special Christmas day at their house so that we don't have to rush-rush too crazy on actual Christmas day. We had a scavenger hunt orchestrated by the two best aunts on the planet, delicious food, gift opening, boxing (per usual), and many a dance party.  Even Santa on the back of the local fire department's truck drove by and handed out candy canes!

Getting holly jolly with Marco's regular antics; he hung snowflakes above our kitchen table, replaced the tree angel with himself, and 'peed' in a cup! We also put some work in for our Christmas cookie baking - the kids helped make peanut butter blossoms, thumbprints with cherries on top, and those pretzel/hershey kiss/m&m little delights that get eaten up in about 30 seconds. I finally got all our Christmas cards out in the mail (LOL, sorry if you get them after Christmas!) and we gifted cookies and cards to our mail carrier and our busdriver Rob. All four kids had Christmas parties at school on Friday while the whole week was themed dress up days for the big kids and for me at the high school. I saw this hilarious meme on instagram this week and started cracking up, because SERIOUSLYYYYYYYYY.  Silently thanking the Amazon Prime gods for supporting and having all the procrastinators' backs (ahem, me). I pressed 'buy' on a dollhouse that was guaranteed delivery by Christmas Eve (LOL) - call me a risktaker - and it arrived on Dec 21 - way to come through, Prime!

Basketball season'ing with three games for Brandon this week - to which NONE of them I made because of distance or Grey's teams (hah!) Violet needed some extra cuddles once this week because she said she only gets to see Daddy for like a minute a day, I reminded her that this happens every year during basketball season and we have to help his team by giving Daddy lots of hugs when we can. PSA: Remember to thank your kids' coaches (and be kind and patient with them), they do not do it for the money - and many days they see your child for more hours of the day than they see their own. We love Coach Daddy and Daddy's team, but that doesn't mean we don't struggle to get through the season. -- Grey had practice three nights this week and two games with Duke Andrews. He is getting a better feel for the game and we are working through his frustrations of taking constructive criticism with grace.

Teaching about La Navidad in Spanish 1 (Musica madness tournament) while also administering interpersonal interviews in Spanish 1. In Spanish 1 Honors we took our Capibara con Botas final test and learned about Las Posadas. Spanish 2 worked on Somos Unit 6 and we played Gimkit to study for our body part quiz. Spanish 2 Honors learned about tradiciones de la Navidad using the Martina Bex unit including Los Pastorales y el día de los innocentes (they requested to play Gimkit too one day - seriously, we're all obsessed). Spanish 3 Honors learned about el tió nadal and finished a Navidad worksheet using Tweets. Then we had a Navidad fiesta including a white elephant gift exchange and our very own diy'ed tió nadal who they named Jerry. #whytho . On Friday, our school had a volleyball tourney and I played again on the teachers' team.

Making hamburgers in the airfryer, 2 ingredient orange chicken in the crockpot over rice, and sloppy joes. I made banana blueberry muffins for breakfast and a cranberry, walnut, and banana bread for Brandon's work Christmas luncheon.


  1. Loved your holiday card!!! Your family is beautiful.

  2. High five for the "lower your standards" advice - that's always my response too, hah! Merry Christmas, Studer Family! XOXO