Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Wordless Wednesday

Painting 'Pete the Cat', a book by James Dean.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

Settling in...

So, it has taken me a bit to settle in to this new year. Normally, I am refreshed and excited for a new year to start. I feel it an opportunity for new things, know, a NEW year. Well, this year I have struggled a bit with that. But, good news - I'm coming out of it.
For one, this was the year anniversary of losing our dear friend, Russel Hays. I think of him daily, hear him laugh at times, smile (and cry) when I hear his music, and am amazed at the sheer beauty of how his wife and kids have turned this situation into something beautiful. Still, though, there was and will always be sadness at each new year's day.
Also, the idea of Ben starting back to school wasn't so great to me. We really missed him through the fall and I was really lonely. We loved having him home for 3 weeks (even through sickness) and I wasn't quite ready to give him back to Emory. I am happy that he is enjoying school, however, and know it is only for a time.
My goal for this year - spend more time with friends. I always complain of not having really strong, meaningful friendships, but am realizing it is my own darn fault. I pass up opportunities to go out or think "Oh, I don't want to bother them." when I feel like I need to unload some emotion. But, you know what? That's what friends are for. So, this year, no being lonely!
And then there's that sweet/sassy daughter of ours. Always going through something (driving us crazy at times), but bringing us such joy. I love watching her and Ben - she loves her Papa something serious. Working to spend more time with her. Not just time, but positive energy and enjoyment and love to make her think she is the most special little girl in the whole world.
So enough feeling 'blah' and time to spread some love.
These two, I love.
And if you are reading this, then I love you too - immensely.
Many blessings to you and yours in this new year. May it bring you lots of joy and a positive outlook on the many things we have to be grateful for.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Our many Christmas celebrations

I apologize for the delay in posting Christmas pictures. We've had a bit of a crazy holiday. After returning from our wonderful snow visit, I had strep throat. While recovering, Ben diagnosed himself with appendicitis. Doctors confirmed and surgery was that night (the 23rd). We were happy to have him home and healthy on Christmas Eve. Thanks to both sets of grands for swooping in and helping get us through.

So we'll start this (very long) post of pictures with the Allegood Christmas, which took place the weekend before the holiday.
Spencer showing off the doll I made him
Patrick and I
Sara and Spencer
Esther loves her robe!
The kiddos with their new lap-tables and aquadoodles
Here starts Christmas week...
E taking care of Papa after we got him home from the hospital
Baking cookies for Santa
Happy to all be together!
Everything set for Santa's visit
Christmas Morning!!!!
Owl bank from Mama and Papa
Broom - her favorite present (and the wrench)

Christmas afternoon we headed to Grandma and Poppi's (Fleming's)
Me and my favorite niece, Payton
Poppi and his grandbabies - a happy man
Sweet Payton
We headed to Mississippi and Louisiana the Sunday after Christmas to visit Ben's extended family.
E teaching Uncle BooBoo how to sew
E and Maggie cracking up over nothing - so stinkin' cute!
Grandmother with her great-grand-girls
Sweet cousins - chillaxin'
Grandma reading to the girls
Modeling for Grandma and Grandmother - that's her blanket tied on with a scarf

And now it is a new year...and, oh how happy we are about this. 2009 wasn't the best of years for us. Reflecting on the year - loss of loved ones, sickness, stress,, family, happiness, blessings. Much to be thankful for - here's to a wonderful 2010!