Wednesday, February 4, 2015

All The Sicks. ALL OF THEM.

We have officially survived a sicker sick week than the horrible Sicksgiving of 2012.

First, Anneliese got pinkeye.
Two days later, Ali got the pinkeye. And a cold.
One day later, Charlotte got the cold.

Two days after that, Anneliese had a random one-time vom. We disregarded it because we are fools.

(Also because it was a horrible week for our community, burying one of our former youth choir girls, who lost her life to depression. It was tragic and gut-wrenching and we had way bigger things on our mind than assuming we had a g/i bug floating through our house on top of everything else. And yet, we did.)

That same afternoon, on top of her cold, Ali also started throwing up (she was home with her mom, because of the funeral), and the next day the voms hit Mark too, all night. I banished him to the guest house, because obviously. He slept for a whole day afterwards.

Two days after that, Charlotte got pinkeye, and a fever, and it turns out her cold had moved to an ear infection. Our first, after seven years and three kids (well, except swimmers ear).

That night, Nathan felt queasy, and by morning was throwing up. He kept at it all day, every fifteen to twenty minutes, constantly. I have never seen anyone throw up so much. It was like... fifteen hours of vomiting.

Meanwhile Ali and Charlotte still both had fevers, and Anneliese was as crabby as I have seen her in months, even though she seemed to have already made it through all the sicks.

By bedtime when Nathan's thing still hadn't run its course, he could barely stand, and couldn't pee, so we called his doctor and they sent us to the ER for fluids and zofran.

They tried the dissolvable zofran first and he promptly threw it up, everywhere. All over the triage area. It was so sad, y'all.

Eventually they got an IV in him and he got some fluids and some zofran and he slept for a spell, and dang he woke up a whole different kid.

Amusing anecdote from the hospital: when Nathan was awake and comfortable enough to talk to the doctors, one of them asked what the best book had read recently was. He told them a biography of J.K. Rowling.
"Oh, so you're a big Harry Potter fan?"
"No I have never read them, I just really like biographies."
(Picture me making the cry-laughing emoji face right here. Haaaaaa. So Nathan.)

Anyway we got home and slept hard, and the next morning, Mark woke up with pinkeye, AND THAT IS WHEN I LOST IT.

It was a very long ten days. I cried.

But! Brightsiding! In between Charlotte's ear infection appointment, and Nathan's never-ending upsturned stomach, we did have some half-birthday cake for him. Also, Charlotte never threw up. I never threw up. I never got pinkeye. I never had more than a bit of congestion. So if any of you want to know my superpower, it is apparently Immune System of Steel.

(Does not apply to mono.) (Or pleurisy.)

(Okay nvm I have odd sickies too, but NOT THIS WEEK UNIVERSE SO KISS IT.)

Monday, February 2, 2015

Old Lady Eyes

It's groundhog day, the snow days will never end, winter will never end, we are coming off a week when everyone is sick, so much fever and pinkeye and vomming and ear infections and and and AND.

That's a mess for another day. For today, tell me that even in my pure unfiltered* exhaustion, my new glasses are pretty.

Yes, I waited til I had a good hair day to take this pic.

My old lady eyes have new progressive lenses, and they are basically the sh!t because:
1- I can see everything now, including my phone screen! and food!
2- They are teal on the inside.

(When my eye doctor asked if I was having any trouble with my glasses, I joked and answered my only problem was that I lost them all the time. He was like... how do you lose them when they should be on your face? Do you take them off? Me: HA HA YES x1000 per day. Him: Like to eat and read and look at your phone and computer? Me: omg yes and now I feel really foolish for not realizing my perscription is indeed woefully wrong.)

Anyway, that's the story of how I can see my computer again. Maybe I shall be better at blogging catchup? One can hope.

(*I just lied straight to your face, there is an instagram filter allll up on that.)

Saturday, January 31, 2015

2014: Mono, Minnesota, Ali

2014, In Review!

What did you do in 2014 that you'd never done before?
- Got mono, at the age of 33, which is unheard of. 
- Wrangled four kids at once, on the reg.
- Read books on a kindle, on the reg.
- Drove across the country for three days with my best friend, which is a thing I will recommend anyone do. 
- Abandoned the car in the snow and walked with three kids to safety, which is a thing I do not recommend. 

Did you keep last year's resolutions, and will you make more for this year?
     I am fairly certain I never made them last year. This year, I would like to get a real job again, I think.

How did you spend New Year's Eve
     I juuuust blogged about NYE so I am changing the question. I just asked Anneliese what she would ask someone about their year and she said What's your favorite thing you ate? 
     (She would like you to know hers was "that spaghetti Daddy makes for me, and also when I had that piece of gum that one time.") I... don't know what mine is. I did have some amaaaahzing, like, close-your-eyes-and-moan-good roasted brussels sprouts with chestnuts and pork belly and apples and a mustard vinaigrette on New Year's Eve, so maybe that? (And, we're back to NYE after all. So.) 

What did you get really really excited about? 
     Our cruise! After a horrible mono-sick spring, and job stresses, and a million details nailed down for childcare and such, we got a grownups-only trip to the Bahamas. Cruises are easy and cheesy and delightful, for real.

What do you wish you'd done more of in 2014? 
     Sleeping. I remain a terrible sleeper. A sleep failure. Full stop.

What do you wish you'd done less of? 
     Losing my glasses. It made me cry more times per week than I should admit. Eeeiiii.

What would you like to have in 2015 that you lacked in 2014? 
     A sun lamp for my desk. Also, more time to sit at my desk. And blog, and read blogs, and send emails, and have general me time. It's everyone's dream right? 

What was great this year when you weren't expecting it? 
     Our Great American BFF Road Trip, to move Nathan to Minnesota and say good-bye. It could have been stressy and bickery and exhausting; on some level I was ready for it to be that, yet glad to go and help anyway. But instead it was wonderful and delightful and fun and bonding. Like one of the best things we have ever done, not just this year but ever.

Who is the best new person you met? 
     Ali! Sweet baby Ali! Of course!

What song will always remind you of 2014? 
     Shake it Off and also Let it Go. Also, Anneliese's horribly (delightfully) misinterpreted lyrics to both of those. (Prayers gonna pray y'all.)

Where did most of your money go? 
     Like always - mortgage, taxes, school tuition, and this year more travel than in recent years.

What was the best thing you bought? 
     A new wedding ring. Slash engagement ring. Slash anniversary band. I left mine on our cruise ship and after a small fortune in ship-to-shore calls, and a police report, a report with the cruise line, phone calls to pawn shops in Port Canaveral and Nassau, and six months of crying, it never turned up. I felt (feel) awful even thinking about it. I know it's just a Thing but it's a special thing, from a hugely special moment in my life, and no other thing will ever be that ring, that re-set stone that was my great grandmother's, bonded to that band that Mark put on my hand on our wedding day. But. I sadly took the insurance money, and Mark and I found one that he loved and I loved. It feels a bit like a solitaire and a bit like an anniversary band and it's set in rose gold, and... I do love it. After months with no ring, I am glad to have this one. Especially with the kind words and wonderful promises from Mark that came attached to it, even now, eleven years after our wedding. It is special too. 

Whose behavior merited celebration? 
     My dad, who retired from teaching this year. He has worked in the corporate world, and the military, and has been an entrepreneur with his own small business, but I think of his many careers, teaching is what he loved best. His students loved him, and he was damn good at it. We are proud of him. And! He remains a stand-up Grandpa. 
     (Also, Anneliese deserves celebrating. She was my answer last year too, but she is just really in a delightful stage. Five forever!) (Ages three and seven are getting the side-eye from me today.)

Whose behavior appalled you? 
     Baby Ali on dairy. My word, child. So much screaming. (Ali without dairy = best niece evaaaar. But on dairy? Appalling. I can say that now because it's over, but. Yeah. Picture my wide eyes.)
     Also, people who use leaf blowers, for any reason, ever. Just no.

Who did you miss? 
     Another Nathan, so freaking much. Especially Tuesday nights.

What was your favorite show? 
     I finally got on board and watched both seasons of Orange is the New Black this year. Also, Mark and I loved Parenthood and watched it religiously until the end (*moment of silence for perfect Braverman series finale*). But besides that and The Mindy Project, I... don't watch very much tv anymore? I still love tv, in theory, I just, I think I like the quiet more. (Mark watches all kinds of things, increasingly with headphones plugged into the roku remote, because see again: quiet.) 

What was your favorite book? 
     I apparently only gave 5-star ratings to six books last year. Of those, I think my favorites were The One & Only Ivan (read that one with your kids! it's a good first chapter book!) and The Fault in Our Stars, because I am very mainstream and predictable, and also it was really dang good. 

What was your favorite new movie? 
     Frozen. (It wasn't new in 2014 but we didn't see it til the new year so it was new to us. And yes I unabashedly love it.)

How old were you on your birthday, and what did you do? 
     I was (am) 34, I went for a really fun and delicious Asian seafood dinner with Mark in Chapel Hill, and we shopped for that new wedding band. It was a lovely wonderful night after a hard season of heavy feelings, and I felt really special and close to him. It was a good birthday.

What was your biggest achievement in 2014? 
     Being the best moving boss ever? (WHAT. I WAS.) Also successfully turning Anneliese into Rainbow Brite, twenty years late. 

Your biggest failure? 
     I majorly let down the kids last summer, and myself, and our dreams for the school break. I just had no bandwidth for the fun bucket list items we had planned. I was sad as it happened, sad when it was over, and still sad now. This year will be better. Anneliese is starting kindergarten and I will start back to work at some point, and this summer is a summer for us. I feel fired-up protective of having some family fun.
     Also, that snow adventure thing. We should probably put that in the Fail for The Ages column too.

What countries/states did you visit? 
     The Bahamas, on our cruise. (Also Georgia and Florida, driving to the port.) Also we went to Virginia/Maryland/DC with the kids in October, and I hit several new-to-me states on our great American road trip: Indiana, Wisconsin, Minnesota (and West Virginia, Ohio and Illinois which were not new).

How would you describe your personal fashion concept this year? Have you showered today? Good for you! 
     Yes! And learned how to make my hair wavy! (It was apparently already wavy, I just didn't know.) Does that count as a fashion concept? If so, I could undo that strikethrough. 

What dates from 2013 will remain etched in your memory? 
- February 12, the snow adventure.
- March 7, when Mark accepted his new job.
- March 13, when Ali was born. 
- April 6, when we sang a beautiful Bach cantata that we worked super hard on, and then Charlotte fell down the stairs and I had to take her to get her face stitched up (when I was horribly fever sick with mono, and Mark was on the last shift of his old job, and Another Nathan was at an interview for a new job himself, and whoa that evening was a perfect storm, a microcosm of all of the angst of that season, April 6 you can GDIAF, except for the Bach thing). 
- April 28, when our cruise departed. 
- July 27, Another Nathan's last Sunday at our church. 
- August 4, the date of my one-way plane ticket back to Raleigh after a horribly sad goodbye.

What kept you sane? 
     Hmmm... iMessage? I don't know. Am I sane? I'm not sure I'm qualified to answer this question.

What valuable lesson did you learn this year? 
     And I am definitely not qualified to answer this one. I don't think I have have any good takeaways. Last year was mostly (not all! but a fair amount) sucky for me. Spring and summer were a haze of sickness and angst and newborn crying and a long goodbye. Fall was colored by a rough marriage season, and struggling to communicate with Charlotte and her sudden stuttering. There were so many hard things, and so many of them were things that I couldn't heal or fix, exactly, besides just riding them out. 
     Maybe if I learned a lesson, it's that *feeling better isn't linear, and sometimes you just have to let hard things be hard, until they pass. Which they usually do. And then it can be okay again.

Anyway. Onward and upward! Etc etc.

*Thanks Sarah. #kissyface

Monday, January 26, 2015

Seven and a Half

Nathan is seven and a half. SEVEN AND A HALF. (I keep waiting for the age that won't give me all-caps wide eyes, but we haven't hit it yet.)

My sister pointed out this week that being seven and a half means he's halfway to driver's ed. (I told her to shut her damn* mouth, because obviously.) (*I used a different word.) (Not a better one.) (Not the one you're thinking though.) (I digress.) (Parentheses!)

Anyway, he is growing up and I'm trying not to do any mom math in my head or I will realize it's all going to fast, and I will panic.  So instead I will just think about the here and now. So, some things about Now:

Nathan is growing, yet ever-smaller for his age, still wearing mostly size 6 clothes (the same as Anneliese!) but he is suddenly eating everything in sight, and asking for more, and he ordered a Korean steak taco at the smoothie place the other day, and I don't even know who he is anymore, is what I'm saying.

No, no. What I am saying is I think we are expecting a growth spurt any minute now, and maybe he won't be the smallest in his class forever. (Or maybe he will. He is also one of the very youngest. Mark was also the youngest and the smallest, so... it could happen.)

He is very into planes and ships and designing and building lego vehicles of any kind - flying and sailing and driving alike. He will read fiction with some coaxing, but mostly he reads biography after biography, even of people he has never heard of. (What?) He watches video footage about aviation and what causes plane crashes, and seems undisturbed, yet won't watch the Little Mermaid because Ursula terrifies him (see also: the first five minutes of Tangled).

He loves whales and space and geography - asking questions about countries and languages and poring over the giant world map on his ceiling (yes really) and the world atlas book my dad gave him for Christmas. (If you know my dad, that's the least shocking sentence in the history of ever.)

He and Anneliese remain best buddies, and he is jealous for her attention when she and Charlotte are feeling particularly chummy on a given day. He does his running club at school on Friday mornings, and is fast, but besides that he isn't super into sports. He sings in children's choir at church (a solid fifth-ish below everyone else, not that it matters) and still plays his cello, better and better all the time. He is a baby hoarder, squirreling away bits of paper, and pieces of toys and random... stuff that he thinks he might want to build something with.
(The other day he told me he was bored -- well, he started to, and then I reminded him if he says he is bored I will find some extra chores for him to do -- and so he went in the recycling bin and got this starbucks cup and built... a boat? I think? THIS IS SO NATHAN, Y'ALL.)

He is a kid who wavers between extreme chattiness, and not knowing how to say what he wants to say. He writes and draws a lot.

Here is some information about the Queen Mary 2. (Why, what does your seven-year-old obsess over?) You can choose whether you like or don't like the information. Complete with a hand-drawn thumbs-up, because he is a Child Of The Era. (I always circle "like." Duh.)
His obsession with this ship oddly makes me miss my Grandpa Schnack. They would have had so much fun being boring together. Truly. Grandpa would have delighted in him.

Here is a Japanese battleship, complete with WWII-era Japanese naval flag (?) (we are fully living in the age of when our kid knows more than we do about the stuff he's interested in).
And yes that's me on top, sitting on a lounge chair, reading a book. I mean... at least I get to go to war? (What does this say about what he thinks of me?)

He is known to bring random notes downstairs to us, that sometimes do or don't make any sense.

He also has an old phone of Mark's, which he can use when he asks permission. He has had a gmail account for several years, and he uses the chat app to "text" people which is usually pretty cute.

Well, usually pretty cute. Not always.

And sometimes just super exciting, as Mark is learning.

And sometimes really legitimately adorable.

And yes, like every other kid his age, he is into Minecraft (thanks Uncle John) (no really, it's fine -- cute, even) and he not only plays the game, but watches other people playing the game on YouTube. AND watches all manner of toy review and project/craft videos, and then got the harebrained idea that he should... do one himself?

Behold, a craft blogger in the making:

(Click here to watch the video on YouTube.)

So many questions. Is where/how to get that template not an important part of the instructions? Why not color the eyes before folding it? And WHY SO MUCH TAPE FOR THE LOVE. (He could use some time-lapse here also.)

(Please know, he is so proud of this. Really super duper pleased.)

(This all happened with Mark's help one night while I was at choir. I came home and it tickled me so much I cried.)

My child! Who spent years staring at adults, mute, when they asked him something. Who even now hates when people watch him or call attention to him or even laugh at his jokes... wants his own YouTube channel? Talks to the camera as if it's the most normal serious thing in the world? I don't even know, y'all.

Growing up. It's weird.

Happy half birthday, you quirky bright sweet wonderful child.

Sunday, January 25, 2015

Seven Quick Takes: Mostly About ME

1.) Remember that doll we got Charlotte for Christmas, which she named Claire (her middle name) (so cute) (swoon etc)? Well, this is the part where I confess that the best part of having this doll around is that sometimes Charlotte needs help putting its PJs on and then I get to have to do it. You know. For Charlotte. *ahem*
(Hi I'm 34 and I still secretly like playing with dolls and I'm not even that sorry.)

2.) Mark and I got each other new back doors for Christmas, and no that's not a euphemism, they are actual back doors. (When you're a Bumgarner and you tell your family this is what you got for Christmas, it is a joke that never ends.) Anyway. They are installed now. And wonderful.
There is no longer an inches-wide gap of daylight and cold air coming through, and we no longer have to keep them locked just to keep them closed, and it's possible to enter and exit without rattling that whole side of the house. It's a huge win, is what I'm saying.

3.) We have been taking lots of walks on the greenway since it has been nice out, and Anneliese and Charlotte have new toys they want to ride a lot. They ride and chatter, and I listen to podcasts and holler occasionally so they don't get out of my sight, and it is very pleasant.
Living somewhere where you can take easy sunshine walks outside in January: RECOMMEND.

4.) Our church hosted an exhibit of some large prints from the St. John's Bible, which is a really gorgeous fascinating project -- an illuminated bible with gold-gilded illustrations and amazing calligraphy that took many years and a small forture and the queen's own calligrapher to make. The art is incredible. I volunteered to be a docent of sorts, and did some trainings with people, and some reading and guided meditations from it, and the whole event was very cool and lovely.

Next time I'm in Minnesota I'm driving up to St. John's Abbey and laying eyes on the real thing. Every time I look at these illuminations, I see something new. Really really fascinating to me. If you have access to a library that has these, even if you're not a Bible-y person, GO CHECK THEM OUT. They are amazing.

5.) Speaking of books and libraries, I think I have a new favorite book. That is... not a thing I say lightly. I think I have named two? maybe? three? two? books, ever, as my favorite. And this one is just astounding.
It's a beautiful story of an abandoned girl with a mess of a childhood, and what she is like as she enters adulthood and marriage and motherhood. It's about loss and hope and being known, and it is lovely and raw and oh, this book is just so beautiful.(It's the third in a trilogy; I liked but didn't love the others, but this one can stand alone as its own story.)

6.) Another Nathan came through town! ...Exactly five days after we said by to him in Minnesota after the New Year. Ha. Timing.
Anyway he was just here for a minute, passing through our town/airport on his way to an event at another of his former churches, but it was long enough to open Christmas presents with the kids and have a pre-birthday beer with Mark and me, and run some errands and pick out new glasses and have a coffee date. And now we have said bye to him for real, for many more months, which would be sad except that the saturation over the last month has been too great to be sad.

7.) I spent the night in a hotel room, alone, for no good reason, other than alone time is a precious ever-fleeting commodity for me, and we always joke that I should do it, and so I finally did. And it was glorious.

I took a winter walk to a dinner place, and I had a long fancy shower with fancy hair potions, I read for hours and hours, both books and some internetting, I drank wine and slept in a giant bed and did not set an alarm, and I went for a fancy coffee with a fancy view the next morning. I didn't worry about what time anything needed to happen, or what order I wanted to do things. It was freeing and fantastic. Some People were worried I would be bored or lonely or sad, but nope, it was uncomplicatedly fantastic. Intentionally indulgent and relaxing, and with the kind support and blessing, encouragement even, of my wonderful Marky who is legitimately glad for me to do something for myself, which totally makes me feel loved. Night in a hotel alone: ALSO RECOMMEND. (Next time I shall also book a spa treatment.)

Friday, January 9, 2015

(Late) Holiday Orchestra Concert

Nathan's school orchestra holiday concert got delayed in December, for reasons I can't remember now (and probably didn't care much about even then), so it waited until January. I mean, who doesn't want to hear beginning string students play Jingle Bells, in any season? (I'm not being sarcastic. It was and is delightful.)
Rosining your bow is very serious business.

I won't post a million videos; I'm not That Mom (yes I am). But here are the two he was most excited about and wants me to post. (Pay attention, grandparents. There will be a quiz.) (Nathan is on the end, in the second row back of cellos.)

Ode to Joy, which he told us at least a thousand times is a very important piece of classical music:

(Click here to watch the embedded video above on YouTube.)

And then Frère Jaques, which he wants me to tell you is a Big Deal because they are not all playing in unison but different instruments have different parts and that is very important! (Zomg adorable.)

(Click here to watch the embedded video above on YouTube.)

What does it say about me that I have become a person who LEGITIMATELY ENJOYS listening to this? Only a mom, right? (But... not because I'm his mom! At least, I don't think so? I really like it! I do!)

Thursday, January 8, 2015

The New Year: Minus Eighteen

Minnesota, take three: the one where I laugh at myself because I thought it was frigid cold when it snowed in the middle of November last fall, but that was before we showed up to visit Another Nathan in January and it was EIGHTEEN BELOW.

What I'm saying is, Mark and I have a new record for cold under our belts. We don't have to live in it all the time, therefore we can laugh about it. And also totally brag about how hardy* we are. (*Not that hardy. We were wide-eyed and mostly horrified. Ask  me if I remembered to pack a hat and gloves. Go ahead, ask me.)

Anyway, we had some air miles, a free place to stay, and free coverage for the kids (thanks Ashley! and Grandma!) so after several of the worst and most chaotic days of 2014 (seriously the van broke and the washing machine broke at the same time, and it was also the day my sister's kids were visiting, and that is a LOT of repairmen and rides to juggle with six children you have no way of transporting, but that's a sob story that is long over now), we happily boarded a plane at the ass-crack of dawn so we could have a grownup getaway for New Year's Eve weekend.

We had a fancy NYE (slash Mr. David's birthday) dinner at a trendy foodie place in downtown Minneapolis. (If you're reading this in MN, go to Coup D'Etat - it is a cool space with a great bar and a delicious menu, and we loved it.) We ate some crazy ridiculous tasty food and had some Kir Royales and other fun champagne cocktails.

Mark ordered bone marrow, proving he's the only actual foodie amongst us, but we all tried it, so HEY ADD THAT TO THE NEW THINGS WE DID IN 2014 LIST (yes we made a list).

(Bone marrow not pictured. You're welcome.)

And then we went to a really fun symphony concert with delightful music, which afterwards had a party with more champagne and there were light-up tambourines and a free vuvuzela (there is almost nothing in life that Marky loves more than an unnecessary vuvuzela) (and let's be honest, they are allll unnecessary) and two stories' worth of crowds cheering in fun glow-stick type lighting, and Sylvia McNair singing "What Are You Doing New Year's Eve" and it was just all.. so fun. Laughing fancy fun.

And not because we all buzzed that vuvuzela on each other in any inappropriate ways or anything. We are for sure too classy for that. Ahem.

Our very favorite people for ringing in a new year, true story.

After our fancy night out, we had some easy slow days at Another Nathan's house. Exactly the kind of cozy and lazy you want when you're kid-free with no agenda except to hang out and recharge. We slept laaaaate every day. (Mark slept more than he has in literally months.)
This is thirty.
(Read: thirty-four.)
(It's not 2015 til I creep on naptime with phone pics.)
We ventured out for a few lunches and dinners. We listened to Nathan practice at church. We made a fondue dinner together. We had winter cocktails by the fire.

One afternoon the boys all went to see the Hobbit movie (zzzzzz amiright?) (Mark and Another Nathan have seen all of them together, so it's some sort of tradition for them) while I stayed home and read in his bathtub which is a thousand percent better than our kiddie-bathroom non-garden tub here at home.

We wandered around St. Olaf since Mark had never been there, and it's so lovely in the snow. We went to church with Another Nathan and heard THE St. Olaf choir sing in his worship service (his church founded the college and choir, so it's an annual tradition to have them sing there) and it was stunning.

And! We went to Sarah's tiny town and got to see her again. Two times in two months!

This time I got to meet her husband and she got to meet Mark, and y'all! Like internet friends turned real-life friends aren't great enough, meeting each other's spouses is even better. We had a double date at this little restaurant on a lake, except it's MINNESOTA IN JANUARY so the lake is totally FROZEN and you can WALK ON IT.

(Okay, all ye people of the winter, who just shrugged -- all the southerners just read that and gasped, I promise.)

We thought it was the coolest thing, and I wasn't even that nervous* except at first (*bold-faced lie).

Oh! Here is another awesome Northfield thing. One night we went downtown for drinks (and popcorn! best, right?) and I somehow left my phone in the bar all night. When I when I went back for it the next day, not only did the owner see me through the window and open up the closed bar for me, and know exactly what I was there for, he had also called Nathan's church to say they found it (someone there saw him and thought someone said he worked at that church), and, AND! They had charged it all night. Charged my lost phone for me! SMALL TOWNS, MAN. Delightful.

Almost delightful enough to make up for that thing where it's minus eighteen degrees in broad daylight.

Nathan, David, Sarah: I would like to put each of your faces in this cartoon:

So. Good trip. Happy New Year, y'all.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Awkward Sibling Pic, v12.0 (New Year Edition)

Happy 2015! What better way to start off the new year than with an awkward sibling photo?

The kids are visiting Grandma while Mark and I have a getaway, and she texted this gem:

They were going out to eat and she wanted to take their picture and she said they just... lined up like that.

What? Are they playing a game? Are they a train? Does Nathan have an imaginary sibling in front of him? Is Anneliese trying to look creepy? Why is Nathan wearing two hoods? Why does Charlotte look like nothing has ever been more normal in her life? WHAT IS EVEN HAPPENING HERE.

Happy awkward new year, I think.

Sunday, December 28, 2014

Festive Two-Ingredient Cocktails

If you're like me, sometimes you want a drinky drink that tastes more festive than pouring a beer or wine, yet doesn't take any more work than that. Enter: the two-ingredient cocktail. Everyone has an arsenal of these, right? Besides just rum + diet, because we aren't 22 anymore? (Haaaa like I will never not want a rum + diet at the beach.)

Anyway here are my favorites from this winter:

Lime vodka + cranberry sierra mist. A classic, right? It was this year's Bumgarner Christmas drink of choice.

Fresh apple cider + Fireball. This is just a poor man's version of a good cider cocktail. Why does artificial cinnamon flavor taste so good? I don't know.
We have been back and forth about whether to do this warm or iced. I vote iced.

Sparking grape juice + gin. Born of a lack of other groceries. Surprisingly delicious.
And yes, if you're the type of person who mixes these things together, you're also the type of person who uses a straw in a wine glass.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

The Christmas When I Forgot Pants

Well, we had ourselves a merry little Christmas. We did the traveling portion of the celebrations before Christmas this year instead of after, which is different for us -- it made the shopping and prep part feel a little rushed, but once we got out of town and got back, we were kind of glad to be home and settled and relax here, just our little family. It felt like far less frenzy than it does some years.

I managed to get all the way to Huntersville, for four family celebrations within three days, and I packed no pants. Zero. NONES PANTS. I wore leggings and a tunic to church on Sunday, and went straight from there out of town. I had packed a bunch of shirts and sweaters but no pants to go with them, and no other tunics or long tops, and no room in our schedule of gatherings to run to Target, so! I wore that tunic and leggings for daaaaaysssss and the good news is I didn't even burn it afterwards.

Anyway. Pictures of Christmas. My outfit on repeat x1000 is barely pictured. Because I can't stand the sight of it. Because obviously.

Reading on his new Kindle, wearing airplane
slippers and reindeer antlers... #doingitright
Anneliese had been asking for colored streaks in her hair for months,
and then Santa put hair chalks in her stocking! She was... excited.

It might be Christmas if your parents let you ride a scooter in the house.

Charlotte also got a new baby doll (she named it Claire, her middle name)
and an Elsa nightgown which we passed off as a dress-up dress. We are smart. 

That awkward moment when you're trying to pretend-
straighten your hair and your dad keeps photo-bombing you.
Giant wall atlas!
Hey Nathan, your Bumgarner is showing.

These magnatiles we gave Nathan were a hit with *all* the kids. RECOMMEND.

Taking pretend selfies with Daddy. Ahhh child of the new millenium.

All the kids/spouses/grandkids were able to make it to Dad's this year! Whoa!

Anneliese and Grandma

Decorating cookies at Ashley's house with my mom.
I'm not saying my decorating was the best, but... it kinda was.
And then I came home and put on jeans and it was awesome, the end.