happy holidays


A New Look for our Christmas Tree!

beej decorating the treeOne of my favorite traditions is decorating the Christmas tree. Over the years my children and husband have been part of that tradition, sometimes more involved, sometimes not. Okay, so my husband sets up the tree and puts on the lights and he considers his job done. Since the big kids began college and aren’t home until days before the holiday, that leaves me and the little kids to do the job.

As you can imagine, young children and Christmas trees get along almost as well as Christmas trees and cats! Over the years we have adapted our decorating to accommodate the younger members of our family. For the most part, our tree and ornaments have survived. That is, until four year old Beej was old enough to reach the tree.

My mother recently asked me how my tree managed to survive all these years and children until now. I told her that none of those kids were little Beej! beej under the tree

Within an hour of the lights being added to the tree, Beej decided that they needed some minor tweaks. Somehow he ended up wrapped up in the lights himself! I’m sure he couldn’t resist the magical feeling of being surrounded by twinkling lights!

He meticulously placed each ornament so I have to believe that there is some secret four year olds logic to the large number of ornaments hung facing the tree. Maybe there’s something special hiding in the center of the tree? And the big gaping holes where there are no ornaments? Are those branches in trouble? Did they do something to offend Beej? When I point them out, he pointedly ignores the huge empty spots and places a second or third ornament on a nearby occupied branch.

Other ornaments do not receive the honor of making it on to the tree. Or maybe they hold another special distinction because I never know where I’m going to find them!


glitter duck ornament
This sparkly duck ended up in the pizza making department after I explained to Beej that although he is a duck, he is covered with glitter so the bath tub is not the place for him! Beej countered with his own logic that the duck did not have wheels, therefore water was the only place for him!! 

Poor Bert looks very lost and confused about he how ended up on the kitchen counter. And this sweet little Muppet found herself abandoned on the chair with an arm broken when Beej fumbled while trying to see if she could stand on her own.

It did not take me long to realize that I had two options- 1. Spend the entire holiday season being the Christmas tree police, or 2. Decorate the tree with unbreakable ornaments and pack away the precious heirlooms.

Knowing how easy it is to make an indelible memory in the mind of four year old, I chose option 2. I would rather have Beej (and any other grandkids to come) remember that I let them truly enjoy the tree, than have my nagging voice ringing through his head for the rest of his life! Thank goodness Target seems to carry an endless selection of $3 kid-friendly ornaments!

And on the plus side, just imagine how precious those older ornaments are going to be to us when we pull them out in a few years, after having them safely tucked away!

Sunday Stills- Traditions

Ragtag Daily Prompt- Fumble

Fandango’s One Word Challenge- Magical

Photo a Day- Start with a C

Happy Holidays!


To Know or Not to Know

We are an Elf on the Shelf family. I freely admit it. I know the elf can be a love it or hate it tradition. For our family, it is a fun tradition. My adult children like taking part in the scenarios when they are home. (I admit that I’ve caught wind of this elf being pretty mischievous when in the hands of the “big” kids after hours.)

A few years ago, our elf, Twizzler, went missing and Jack, his temporary replacement showed up. I wrote an update last year in Elf Business.

Twizzler remains missing but he has not been forgotten by nine year old CJ. Four year old Beej, having no real memories of Twizzler has little interest in the elf prior to Jack.

jack and the snowmen

Jack has settled into being our family elf. Sometimes it seems like he’s pretty secure in his position with our family, which leads me to wonder if he had a hand in Twizzler’s disappearance. ?!?!?!

Seriously, this leads me to Fandango’s Provocative Question #4 “Is it better to know or is it better to not know?”

Being the person who is in charge of elf management in our family, I’m responsible for the care and keeping of our elves. (We currently have a total of 4 or 5, depending on if you count poor Twizzler. Along with Jack, there is Ginger-my office elf, Jack’s friend who will be visiting this week to join in Jack’s antics, and the mystery elf who sits on top of a mirror with a bag of coal, who just appeared one day without explanation.)

But I can’t let go of the Case of the Missing Elf- especially since he was my responsibility. One year I put him away in a safe location, where he would not be accidentally missing-twizzlerdiscovered. Confident that I would remember where he was, I did not take note. And when I went looking for him, he was no where to be found. I know the general vicinity, I THINK! It’s going on three years now……

So, as I thought about Fandango’s Provocative Question, I can honestly say that I think it’s better to know. This extends beyond missing elves for me. Being a worrier and over thinker, I would rather know and put some of those hot topics that keep me up at night to rest. Even if it’s not good, I would rather know than not.

There are some things that I don’t need to know immediately, but many fall under the “better to know” heading. Whether Beej is going to develop “R” and “L” sounds is not a pressing matter. If I’m going to pull off the holidays successfully playing musical children and juggling when to do what is another I don’t need to know. What happens will happen.

But when it comes to others, I would rather know what I’m facing than wonder. I tend to be realistic and don’t have much time for the “head in the clouds/ floating around in oblivion” mentality. (Something tells me those people might prefer not to know.) If I had some answers, I could better wrap my head around the answers and move forward instead of wondering when, what, where?

One thing is for certain. I really want to know what happened to Twizzler!

How about you- do you prefer to know or not to know? (And I welcome any and all leads on my missing elf!)




Peppermint Mocha

hot drink

I can tell it’s officially the holiday season when my favorite Peppermint Mocha comes out of hibernation! Forget Pumpkin Spice this and Pumpkin Spice that- all I want is Peppermint Mocha! I’m not a regular coffee drinker but there’s something about this combo that gets me in the holiday mood! 



Cee’s Black & White Photo Challenge- Hot or Cold

Photo A Day- December- Hot Drinks


Happy Holidays!


Chestnuts Roasting…


Christmas, 1985. My boyfriend, cousin and I were squeezed comfortably in a loveseat made for two. A fire crackled in the fireplace, a cheerful addition to the festive music and laughter that filled the house. A good time was being had by all. Although close to the fireplace, we paid no mind to the heat.  We were having great fun, us three. It was only when someone walked into the room shouting that we looked up. Imagine our surprise when we discovered the room had filled with smoke. We did our best Three Stooges imitation, all trying to get up from the loveseat at the same time only to find ourselves wedged in! Who knew you shouldn’t burn wrapping paper?

tell me a tale in 100 words

Tell Me a Tale in (Exactly) 120 Words- December

Photo a Day Challenge- Fireplace

Have a great day!