Over the weekend we made another quick trip to Chattanooga to meet up with Corey and Alex, whom we haven’t seen in months. They drove up from Atlanta and we met for the afternoon at the Pumpkin Patch on Signal Mountain.
Corey and I have been friends for nearly 20 years, and it’s a blessing to us that our boys like each other. Despite the time and distance apart, Jeremy and Alex always play like they’re best friends. They must get that from their mothers.
More under the cut…
I was all excited to make my Tennessee Vols pumpkin in early October.
And then it rained.
Cruel omen, no?
Anyway, let’s move on to Advent, shall we? I don’t have an official wreath but I’ve printed off a number of coloring pages and art projects to teach the boys about the season of Advent. December begins on Thursday, so we’ll have a lesson each day (even on weekends, which feels so wrong) leading up to December 25. We started talking about it this morning and Jackson’s eyes sort of glazed over, but for a five year old, he hung in there.
We also started decorating the house for Christmas yesterday and I found that I preferred some of the DIY holiday decorations I made last year while we were still in Amarillo and our things were in storage. I’m making the entire house as lovely as possible in anticipation of my family’s visit. This will be the first time they come to east Tennessee since we moved here in March, so I’m not leaving a single room untouched.
I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday! We sure did, and our tight pants can prove it.
We had Thanksgiving with the Millers this year (minus Tami and Hayli, plus a couple more) and I was happy to cook my little heart out. The Maple Bacon-Wrapped Turkey never gets old.
On display for dinner were the boys’ thankfulness posters, and since some of them are hard to see, I’ll list for you each of the things for which Jeremy and Jackson are grateful.
Jeremy is thankful for:
1. Daddy, who throws the football with him
2. Trees, to provide us oxygen
3. Rain, which makes Tennessee beautiful
4. Veterans, who protected our country
5. Ribs, which protect our lungs so we can breathe
6. Our house, which has a playground in the back
7. Grandma and Grandpa, just for existing
8. Green Bay beat the Vikings (random, I know)
9. Thanksgiving dinner, which is delicious
10. Mom, for no specific reason
11. Jackson, who plays with him
Jackson is thankful for:
1. Jeremy, who is a great big brother
2. Star Wars video game, for obvious reasons
3. Phineas and Ferb, who are his best friends
4. Orisinal, his favorite computer game
5. Salem, the most awesome cat
6. Mary Alison, his cousin and favorite babysitter
7. Friends, who are scattered around the country
8. Curious George, who is a funny monkey
9. Tom Jr., who joined us for Thanksgiving
10. Mom and Dad, who are the best in the world
So there you have it. I have two thankful boys who I am very thankful for.
Bring on the Christmas!
The good thing about homeschooling is that I have virtually total control over our schedule. The bad thing about homeschooling is that I have virtually total control over our schedule.
Thanksgiving is tomorrow, so my brain is slowly slipping away from Math-U-See videos and Sight Word Bingo to gluten-free gravy recipes and a maple-glazed turkey. But that’s okay, I figure, because if we lag behind then we’ll make it up later or tack on an extra hour a day until we’re back on track. See? Total control.
I’ve also started thinking more about Christmas presents for the boys and have decided that we’re going to choose experience over stuff and quality over quantity. I’m eyeballing a few Lego sales and buying the new Llama Llama book (because that series is the best!), and wondering if I’ll ever find the Smokey Pillow Pet for less than 30 bucks. We’ll put up some Christmas decorations this weekend but hold off on cutting down the tree for another couple of weeks so it’s alive and fresh when my family arrives next month.
It’s not lost on me that last year’s holidays were somber and a little lonesome, following Brenda’s passing and our cross-country separation. I’m resolved to make this year more memorable and special with a little creativity and appreciation for the little things.
I think I’ll start by muddling through two math lessons and then officially declaring our the start of our Thanksgiving holiday. Sound good?
A couple months ago Amy asked if we’d be interested in going to a Tennessee game with her and Matt, which was of course a big YES. She purchased discounted tickets through her workplace and they drove up Saturday afternoon from Chattanooga. After a quick bite in town, we hopped the bus from Maryville to Knoxville and arrived just in time for kickoff.
The weather was perfectly chilly and the game was STRESSFUL. Tennessee is still rebuilding its team with young, eager players, so even though a win against Vanderbilt shouldn’t be that big of a deal, it was a huge deal on Saturday night. The game went into overtime, tied at 21, when Tennessee intercepted the ball and took it into the end zone for the win. The crowd erupted into screams and singing Rocky Top. From our top tier seats we could see Smokey howling at all the ruckus. It was great.
(photo courtesy of GoVolsXtra.com)
What in the world will we do when football season is over?
I suppose we can start by praying for a better 2012 season.