A few things about these pictures, in no particular order:
~ The green green above is my Grandma's backyard, smack in the middle of not-so-nice LA. And oasis for great grandkids.
~ The beach is Santa Monica
~ It was cold, but during our beach outing the weather was perfect and beautiful
~ Yes, my husband and son went in the water. No, the rest of us did not.
~ Yes, my husband has a black eye. No it's not from me, but from coaching wrestling.
~ Funniest misunderstanding of the trip: When my aunt asked Darrick about his injury and he said, "I make black guys look good, huh?" And it took all of us about 3 times making him repeat himself before we realized he wasn't being awkwardly racist. "Black EYES. EYES."
~ That matriarchal beauty with my kids is the woman of honor who we traveled to visit: My gramma!
This past weekend, we mixed things up a bit by heading in the other direction:
Notes on these pictures:
~ We cut our tree this yaer just south of Heber. There was about a foot of snow on the ground in most places from a storm during the week.
~ Snow angels are all the rage this year, you know.
~ Also: snowman, complete with charcoal eyes and carrot nose. She left the nose and 'buttons', but insisted we bring home the hat, smile, and eyes.
~ The tree is obscenely large and we love it.
~ We strung white lights and haven't touched the tree since. And we like it that way.
One good thing about Arizona is that we can do this. We can fly to LA one weekend and bask on the beach and love on my grandma, then head up north to tromp in the snow and get cold and drink hot chocolate in the back of my mom's pickup truck the next. I am loving it. I am loving my kids this year and how engaged and excited they are about Christmas.
Post-Script: We hung our stockings from the banister, though we later had to move them to acommodate the tree. Luca pulled out the stockings we had for our dogs and asked about them. I asked what she wanted to do, and she said, "I want to hang them up, mommy. We should try to remember them all the time. I think it's important." And then tonight I was out finishing my last run of C25K and a little mini pinscher dog came running up to me barking. Her elderly owner was waving frantically from the driveway, no doubt afraid I'd freak or get mad. Without thinking, I called out, "Don't worry! I have dogs!". But I don't, and I still miss them. Rest in peace, little loves.