I can't quite remember where we left off here on the blog, and I'm honestly just too lazy to go back and look right now. So I'll just go over some highlights of what I've been up to the past few weeks so we can catch up!
- I ran a 5K. I may have mentioned this before, but even so it's worth repeating. This a huge event for me. Maybe you can run a 5K without blinking an eye or losing your breath, but I have struggled very hard to make it this far in the running world. Thanks to Couch25K and the encouragement of my friend Shelly, I made it. I ran the whole thing, which was pretty much my only goal. My next running goal is to keep running 5K on a regular basis until it gets easier. I got a gift certificate for a running store for Christmas, so I'll be going to get some good shoes next week. I would have never thought I'd be excited for something like that, but I am!
- Chris got advance screener tickets to see The Hobbit, and by some strange twist of fate we were actually able to get a babysitter so I could go with him. The Hobbit is my favorite Tolkien book, so I was really looking forward to seeing the big screen adaptation. I wasn't disappointed - it was great! However, I somehow missed the memo that it's getting broken up into THREE movies, so I was seriously disappointed to be left hanging right in the middle of the action.
- We took the kids to see White Christmas at the historic Redford Theatre in Detroit. I was unsure how they'd react to seeing a long old movie with lots of singing and dancing, but they were really good. I'm not going to say they loved it, but they didn't complain at all, and I did love every second of it. If you live in the Metro Detroit area, the Redford Theatre is really something to see, and they even play live organ music before the show and at intermission.
- Bethany is playing clarinet in the 6th grade band this year. They had a holiday concert, and it is crazy how much the kids have improved since October, when we last got to hear them perform.
- Mattie had her holiday program at preschool, which is one of the cutest things ever. She was really excited about it and practiced her songs and poems at home quite a bit in preparation for her stage debut. And afterward I had the pleasure of trying to make her perform the Santa poem, with hand movements, to anyone who would watch and listen at every holiday get together we went to or hosted. Sometimes she cooperated, sometimes not. I love 3, it's so much fun.
- Speaking of 3 being fun...we're still dealing with a hardcore hat obsession here. Mattie continues to wear a hat 24/7, removing it only to bathe or have her hair brushed. We try not to make too much of a fuss about it, and hope that she'll be over it by the time summer hits.
- Chris and I went to The Killers concert at Eastern Michigan University with friends. Beforehand we stopped for dinner in Mexican Village. It was a great night! I can't remember the last time I went to a concert, so this was a pretty big deal for me! I love The Killers, and they put on a fantastic show!
- Bethany had a basketball tournament (who plans these things? games on December 23rd??), which was fun to watch, albeit a bit inconvenient with the timing.
- We took the kids to see The Grinch downtown. While the caliber of this show fell short of many other kid-friendly stage productions (Beauty and the Beast, for example is really awesome) we've seen, it was cute and fun. It was at the Opera House, which is beautiful and conveniently located near a People Mover stop. So after the show we took a ride on the People Mover and headed to Greektown for dinner at Pizza Papalis. Of course no trip to Greektown is complete without a visit to Astoria bakery, one of my favorite places. This was one of the best days of the holiday season for us.
- I continued our now annual tradition of taking the kids to Journey to Bethlehem at our church. This was our fourth year going, and the third year of having a friend come along...someone different joins us every year. This is one of the best things that my church does. It is a live action, walk through story of Jesus' birth. The classrooms and halls are transformed so that visitors can get a feel for what it was like for Joseph and Mary on their fateful journey to the stable where Jesus was destined to be born. With costumed amateur actors (the parish priest plays Joseph in one scene), elaborate backdrops and props, and incense burning, this event always helps me get in the Christmas spirit.
- Chris's brother came up from Florida to spend a few days during the holidays. Since he was here for NYE, Chris and I went out with him, along with their mom and step-dad. Notice I didn't mention the kids? That's because we hired a babysitter! I think this was maybe the 3rd time in over 11 years! We went to Coach Insignia at the Ren Cen for dinner, then went to the casino for a little bit. Chris and I are such high rollers, as soon as we were up $20 we agreed it was time to cash out. Unbelievably, I think this was the first time in my life I've been downtown on NYE. We usually pretty much do nothing. The people watching was absolutely top notch.
- A few days after Christmas, the kids went to my mom's to make cookies for a few hours, so Chris and I seized the opportunity to go see the movie I had been eagerly anticipating for months - Les Miserables! I was so geeked to see this movie, with its fab cast and all. We have seen the play several times, it's my favorite, and I couldn't wait to see what they'd do with it as a movie musical. And...I loved it. Really, really loved it. I can't wait to see it again. Being a movie, the emotions were turned up several notches. Superb performances all around. Thank you, movie people, for not ruining a classic!
I've been busy doing all kinds of awesome stuff! What's my problem, right? I'm just...not a winter person. I'll keep doing as many fun things as possible for the next couple months, and before I know it spring will be upon us. I hate to rush it, because that means rushing my babies to grow up...rushing to Connor's 10th birthday and Mattie's 4th birthday, etc etc.
Maybe next time I'll talk about goals for the year. Which I still have to think about, but I'll get there. I have a lot of think about. For now I'll be concentrating on getting through each day as happily as possible, and not letting the winter doldrums conquer me!