My Christmas Present to You!

This is incredible!!!

 

Merry Christmas and Happy New year!

IMG_7871

Tagged! You Behind the Illness…Told in Four’s.

My friend Terri at her absolutely fantastic blog, Reclaiming H.O.P.E. has invited me to participate in telling you a little bit about me behind my illness. Like Terri, I am someone who mostly blogs about living with fibromyalgia. I appreciate this chance to talk about things that have nothing to do with illness, and this looks fun!

Here we go, this is me told in fours:

 

 

Four places you’ve lived:

  1. St. Cloud, Minnesota.
  2. Seattle, Washington.
  3. San Antonio, Texas.
  4. Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Four places you’ve worked:

  1. Director, Bishop Lewis State Work Release.
  2. Court Advocate, Region IV Council on Domestic Violence.
  3. Mental Health Counselor, Mt. Olivet Rolling Acres.
  4. Psychiatric Technician, Crisis Unit, Fairview Deaconess Psychiatric Hospital.

Four Hobbies you enjoy:

  1. Zentangles.
  2. Art Journals.
  3. Bible journaling.
  4. Decorating wreaths.

Four things you like to watch:

  1. Real Housewives of … (I’ll deny, deny, deny!)
  2. This is Us.
  3. Criminal Minds.
  4. Game of Thrones.

Four books you’ve enjoyed reading:

  1. The House of Spirits by Isabel Allende
  2. Many Masters, Many Minds by Brian Weiss
  3. Space Between the Stars by Deborah Santana
  4. The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats

Four places you have been:

  1. Cozumel
  2. Cancun
  3. Isla Mujeres
  4. Tulum

Four things you love to eat:

  1. Fresh guacamole and chips.
  2. Fresh melon with chili powder sprinkled on it!
  3. Grilled steak.
  4. Cheeseburgers.

Four things you love to drink:

  1. Dos Equis with lime and salt!
  2. Powerade Zero.
  3. La Croix flavored water.
  4. Cappuccino.

Four places you’d love to visit:

  1. Indianapolis to watch the Indy 500.
  2. Canada to ski Whistler.
  3. Africa to go on safari!
  4. Kentucky to watch the Kentucky Derby.

 

I’ve been cruising around trying to find folks to nominate to do their ‘fours’… I’m late! Please, if you read this consider yourself tagged! I Nominate You!!! (Caught you!)

This was fun. Thank you, Terri!

Version 2~Kim

 

The Beginning of the Faraway End.

As I blogged earlier we are beginning to downsize! First and foremost this will be great for my fibromyalgia. To have less is less to clean! But our ultimate goal remains the same, to sell this big house and travel in an RV for a few years before settling down to a small home in an area we want to retire to.

Today, the boxes are lined up with a name on each, what item is going to who? We decided to do my husband’s side, half of our 15 nieces and nephews this Christmas as they will be all gathered at the Christmas festivities. My side is not so into family heirlooms and are scattered this holiday so we will hold off on my side for now.

Olivia, Eli, Emerson, Chloe, Zach, Hailey and Linsey.  Seven boxes. Seven boxes filled with memories of ours that we hope will add to their memories of us. Memory boxes. Items of value for no other reason than the ability to create good memories! It is with good intent and joyful excitement I place carefully chosen items into each of these boxes.

I thought this would be extremely difficult for me to handle. Giving away heirlooms that meant so much to me, packed and ready to be passed down to my children one day. This feels the same, though these children are not mine by birth, they are part mine. I was a presence in their childhood. They were mine to love their whole lives and I do! 

This time of year brings my focus to family events but Jeff, my husband and I, are beginning to establish our own ideas of how we spend this time of the year. We are talking it through and having a great time discussing fun ideas that we want to do. Just us, and some things with our dogs in tow … after all,

“It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year…”

IMG_0206~Kim

I Don’t “Fit” Christmas.

I am not a Mom. I am a daughter, a sister, an aunt and very recently, a great aunt. I am a wife, a sister-in-law, a cousin and a niece. I got married when I was 38, a little late in life. We never tried to have a baby but we didn’t NOT try either. It just didn’t happen for us. We looked at adoption but the price of adoption was, well, a number we couldn’t come up with.

So, I am not a Mom, I just turned 50 and this Christmas confuses me?

 

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Only half of the crew!

 

With 15 nieces and nephews between my husband and I, there was a time when I had at least one, usually two, children at my house almost every other weekend. They had fun staying with “Auntie.” Let’s face it, you can spoil them when they aren’t your own and send them home! Then there were the college days, “Auntie’s” house was a place to do laundry, get a free meal and a comfy couch to crash on.

Then, they all grew up, started getting married and having their own children. Those children have new “Aunties” to stay with. New cousins to play with…

Where do I fit? My elderly parents have care, one of my siblings has taken over that role and lives near them, full-time. She was married but is not anymore. She likes it that way, I think. She decided long ago not to have children. My other siblings are experiencing their children getting married, their children having babies and becoming grandparents themselves.

Christmas really confuses me this year. I’m having trouble with what it is? I can’t define it anymore. I knew what it was when I was a child, even when I was an aunt. I knew what to do when the nieces and nephews were in diapers and in their teens … but the diapers and the sippy cups went away and the graduations happened. The marriages happened, now in the last three months, two newborns have come into the family. I’m a “Great Auntie” so my role has changed.

I think there may be a simple answer, I just don’t “fit” Christmas anymore. It is time to figure out what Christmas looks like for my husband and I. We will need to figure out our traditions. It is just he and I, after all. So I will ask for his help. And I know he will help me figure out how to make Christmas “fit” us.

IMG_0178~ Jeff and I.