Good things about the holidays:
1. The kids had fun and we managed to get in all of the decorating, gingerbread house making, and tradition making things that make the holiday special in our house. My boys especially are creatures of habit and like to celebrate the same way and re-tell stories from years' past.
2. Everyone liked their loot for the most part and I was able to get things purchased and wrapped and under the tree by Christmas morning. Highlights included a Nook for D, DS 3DSXL's for A and L (huge sale on Thanksgiving night), the right clothes for E, and boots for M that she's been pining over. The gifts shared between the kids were also cute, particularly the Boomslang hotsauce purchased for E by A and M (she's obsessed with hot sauce and puts it on everything).
3. I pulled off another Christmas eve dinner for my side of the family and it was a nice evening.
4. Winter break has been a nice respite for everyone. Lots of movies, games, legos and Just Dance 2014 which has translated in fun all around.
5. CA let me have the little girls for a weekend. 7 kids was quite the handfull, but we made it work and everyone had fun. I'm hoping she'll allow more of this.
1. K came home from the stupid trip and acted like nothing happened. He actually expected me to welcome him with open arms. Even the kids have kept him at a distance. His reaction has been typical and grossly immature. He blames me and had a lovely tirade on New Year's Eve which included him telling me how awful and selfish I am...all in front of the kids. I don't even know where to go with this. He's been sleeping in the basement and ignoring all of us since Tuesday. I'm just too tired and busy to know how to address this. Frankly, I'm too hurt too. Sigh.
2. The daughter of my neighborhood friend has continued to worsen without any explanation still. It's heartbreaking.
3. Everyone in the house except me and E have been sick all week. I was in urgent care with A yesterday morning thinking it was strep. Hacking cough, fevers and sore throats all around with varying degress of severity. I'm hoping the last of the fevers were last night with A and L. I felt good enough about their overall health to sneak out today to the office for a few hours. A little change of scenary didn't hurt either.
4. Holidays with the girls still stink. They struggle to settle into our family routines and lash out at me in particular when they are hurting. The boys also deesrve to have a regular Christmas and not be dragged into their grief and have their Christmas spirit held hostage by it. My family also struggles to respect boundaries during this time. My dad was realy bad with E this year, guilting her into visiting the cemetery on Christmas day when she had pretty much decided just to come to the inlaw's with us. Then there was little sister S buying M about $400 worth of presents (each of the cousins does a secret santa) including another new pair of boots. My heart sunk as she opened up present after present which outdid what Santa provided in our house (seriously, what 13 year old needs 2 $30 jcrew tshirts???). Throwing money at their guilt doesn't help anything, definitely not M.
I've wanted (needed) to write this out for a few days, but things with K especially have left me raw. Building lego sets and paper airplanes with L has taken priority. I hope everyone had a lovely holiday season and I certainly look forward to starting a new year. The current mess that is my life needs a fresh start.