Sunday, January 21, 2018

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow

Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of heavenly lights who does not change like shifting shadow. -James 1:17

In true Tennessee fashion, we started our snow days with warm weather, took a dramatic turn into single digits and two rounds of snow. Brian and the kids ended up with snow days from Friday, January 12 - Friday, January 19. (Brian actually had to go back to school Friday because our county requires teachers to work on some snow days.) The temperature went from a high of 15 to a high of 62 in about 2 days flat.


Snow days give permission to both adults and kids to rest and relax. Last Friday, Saturday, and Sunday were just absolutely lovely. This week slightly less lovely because I was working from home, still had doctor's appointments and chemo . . . with everyone home together.

So, here's how we filled our days.

Lots and lots of travel documentaries. I can't take my kids around the world, but that's why we have Netflix. Our absolute favorites are I'll Have What Phil's Having and Somebody Feed Phil.  Amazing Hotels: Life Beyond the Lobby and Planet Earth 2 are perfect for snow days. We also watched To Kill a Mockingbird, The Pursuit of Happyness, and National Treasure. I binged the entire season 2 of Last Chance U and Brian caught up on Quantico and the Blacklist. 

Breakfast is generally non-existent in our house, but on snow days we cooked breakfast every day - pancakes and bacon, sausage and biscuits, monkey bread, cinnamon rolls, etc. Camden is clearly enjoying the camera catching him in that apron.

Brian taught the kids to play rummy.

We had church together on the couch Sunday morning. Camden led us in worship. This memory is at the top of the list for Snowmageddon 2018.

We drank a lot of coffee. A lot.



Rory made crafts - look how cute this colorful snowflake is!



Some serious snow shoveling happened



Surprisingly, very little playing in the snow. I guess they're too old and worried about the cold for that these days.


Brian made Rory a bookcase for her room. He's working on one for me next.


Lots of selfies:




The whole crew came with me to Vanderbilt for my appointments and chemo Wednesday. We had to be there bright and early, but I actually really enjoyed the earlier schedule. My energy level was so much better as we walked out at noon instead of the usual 6:00ish. Camden had never been to The Grilled Cheeserie so we remedied that situation. He says they're almost as good as his own grilled cheese. 




And now we're at the end of our snow vacation. Everyone heads back to school and the office tomorrow. These past 8 days were an unexpected reprieve from an actual schedule, and the downtime gave me the opportunity to be sick after 2 chemo treatments without really missing much. Carefree days don't come around often, and I tried really hard to soak up the moments. 

Maybe winter isn't quite over - it's only January 21 after all.


Friday, January 12, 2018

Five on Friday (January 12, 2018)


1. Well, it may have been 69 degrees yesterday, but today it's 24 degrees with snow and ice. Our very first Snow Day in 2018! Possibly our one and only because this is Tennessee. If I remember correctly, we had absolutely no snow days last year. With 4 teachers in the family, snow days are very, very important to our sanity. By the way, the 4 teachers are Brian, my sister Liz (who teaches PE and coaches basketball at the kid's school), my sister Becky (who teaches high school French and Bible in OK), and my dad (who subs at the kid's school but was a middle school math teacher at one point in his life).

It's a snow day, no plans, and we have all the ingredients for Chex mix. Life is good.

2. So we all went to see The Greatest Showman last weekend, and I never imagined jumping on this bandwagon, but it is SO. GOOD. I mean, I think it was the movie that was so good, but the reclining seat theater probably contributed to the amazing-ness. Nevertheless, I've had the soundtrack on repeat and I've been watching all the inspiring little videos that the crew filmed as the actors learned the music, and it's pretty incredible!

3. I met Tina and Kathy for our annual Christmas lunch this week before chemo. They are so dear to me. There's nothing like old friends who have seen you through thick and thin.


4.  I have spent every spare minute over the past several weeks posting the rest of our 2017 pictures so that they're all here in one place. As you know, I convert the blog into a book every year as our scrapbook for the year. So if you're interested in seeing way more pictures than necessary, here are Thanksgiving, more Christmas, and part 1, part 2, part 3, part 4, part 5, and part 6 of our trip out west.

5. We are thoroughly enjoying our new espresso machine. There is a learning curve, but we're making progress and it is perfect for the weekends and snow days.

And every night after supper if you're Brian.


Knock on wood but I'm feeling really well after this week's treatment. A snow day along with the weekend feels so right and cozy that I'm just about as content as it's possible to be. Happy weekend, friends. I hope many of you are enjoying a snow day right along with me.

Monday, January 08, 2018

Why not?

Why not dress up in a fancy dress, borrow mom's red summer sandals, throw on some blue eyeshadow and pink lips, and sing the Hamilton soundtrack at the top of your lungs? It's still Christmas break after all.




Friday, January 05, 2018

Five on Friday (January 5, 2018)

The first Five on Friday of 2018!

1. Brian and I headed back to work/school on Tuesday. Guess who slept through the alarm until 6:40, which is exactly 10 minutes before I needed to leave and about 20 minutes before Brian should have headed out. Brian and I both woke up panicked, which was certainly not the most peaceful way to start the year. Funny - Rory, who always sets her alarm to tell us goodbye on the mornings when we leave but they stay, set her alarm for 6:00 and actually came downstairs and realized our door was closed and didn't want to interrupt us. She came back down at 6:15 but still didn't knock on the door. At that point, she gave up and just went back to bed for good.

2. Speaking of Rory, guess who tried to sneak out of the house with make-up on her face. Because she has not learned the art of subtle or sneaky, it was bright blue eyeshadow which I spotted immediately. I am no dummy.

3. Wednesday, which I was dreading more than I can say, actually turned out to be a sweet day. Still long, still lots of doctors, still chemo, but sweet. Mom came with me which gave us a chance to really catch up after the holidays. The eye doctor's assistant said I was her favorite, and my chemo nurse (who I don't have every week, but often) also called me her favorite. Both the lab gal and the receptionist in the infusion waiting room have my name and birthdate memorized (which is both sweet and also a reminder of just how often I am there). Nothing too strong in the way of side effects so far.

4. Because every book you've been waiting for arrives from the library at once, I currently have these books in my living room waiting to be read in a mere 3 weeks time: Little Fires Everywhere by Celeste Ng, Turtles All the Way Down by John Green, Manhattan Beach by Jennifer Egan, and The Rules of Magic by Alice Hoffman.

5. In 2016 I read When Breath Becomes Air, which is the memoir of a 36-year old neurosurgeon diagnosed with terminal cancer at the end of his extensive medical training. It has over 7,000 reviews and a 4.5 star rating on Amazon if that tells you anything. I stumbled across this article earlier today about his wife, and it made me so happy.

Our weekend plans are both busy and not-so-busy. The kids were so desperate to get out of the house that they grocery shopped bright and early with me. Christmas break was too short for the adults, maybe a couple of days too long for the kids. We have tickets to see The Greatest Showman tonight; tomorow afternoon is the Titan's playoff game (we're watching from the cozy comfort of our own couch). Sunday is church and a nursing home service (the children's choir is singing). Happy Friday, friends.