Friday, December 24, 2010

'twas the night

i just finished packing my suitcase and ate the last piece of chocolate out of my advent calendar. to quote the grinch, "tomorrow is christmas! it's practically here!"

i feel like christmas sprang upon me this year in a way it hasn't in the past, but i have still enjoyed this month leading up to the happiest of holidays, and i hope you have, too.

i spent a lot of time making things, which was a first for me, including a wreath for our door, stockings for our banister, and approximately 3 tons of candy.

AWD took me to see the ice sculptures at the national harbor, which i always love. this year the theme of the display was "how the grinch stole christmas." AWD didn't gloat that he could go down the ice slide so much faster than me, and i didn't gloat that i can recite the first quarter of the aforementioned book by memory. so a good time was had by all.

and then my girl KJ came to town! we spent 2.5 seconds looking at the capitol christmas tree before freezing nearly to death, and spent the rest of our hours together eating pizza and drinking hot chocolate and talking, talking, talking. old friends are a gift any time of the year.

and then, of course, there was "it's a wonderful life" in all its glory on the big screen (everyone cried) and a christmas tree and jazz at the national botanical gardens. they even had notable d.c. buildings made out of some magical combination of seeds and husks and stems. it was so warm and cozy and festive in there. in other words, perfect.

EH and i went and got our toenails painted christmas red and had our roommate christmas a few nights ago, AWD stashed presents all over my house last night, just like a real santa, and now i am just counting the minutes until i leave for home. a week of family and movies and laughing and loving sounds just about right to me.

safe and healthy and happy holidays to you, all my dears. see you next year.

Friday, December 10, 2010

light me up

we went to the temple on wednesday, EH, alyce and i, and it was just wonderful as the temple always is. though this time it was extra wonderful because the christmas lights are up.

these pictures are not wonderful, but i think you get the idea.

just blissful. freezing outside and blissful.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

word of mouth

the news i have to share today did not happen today, but it has not been announced on the internet and it deserves to be.

it is this.

i finally beat miss angela in a game of "words with friends."

it has been a long time coming and i am pretty proud of it.

the end.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

taking sides

sometimes, in order to provide a concise summation of my current situation, i say that i am either winning or losing at life.

examples of winning at life include getting $118 shoes for $35 (thanks, laura!) or getting to work on time and with all the keys, papers and laptops you need (maybe some day).

examples of losing at life include buying everything at the grocery store except for toilet paper, when that is the one thing you really needed.

mostly it's just a funny thing to say. but over the past couple of days, as i've watched some people i really love have to do some really hard things, i have been thinking about how it's not always just a funny thing to say. sometimes it really truly and honestly feels like life is getting the better of you. which is not a great feeling at all.

and so, over the past couple of days i have also been thinking about this line from "the messiah." it stuck out to me when i heard it sung on saturday, and it has been stuck with me ever since.

if god be for us, who can be against us.

for as much as we feel that we are falling behind, not living up, failing to cope or losing at life, with a loving heavenly father on our side i believe we will always win in the end. in fact, we are probably winning even when we feel like we are losing. because my answer to this question is simple: if god is for us, then no one and nothing can stand against us. at least not for long.

which is not to say that people will not disappoint us, that our parents will never get sick or that our expectations will always be met or that our decisions will always be easy or that we will always get exactly what we want exactly when we want it and live happily ever after the end.

but it is to say that we can come out triumphant on the other end of all of those things, which is pretty much the greatest feeling of all. wouldn't you say?

Monday, December 6, 2010

simply having

i do not recommend visiting the craft store on a saturday just a few weeks before christmas. unless, of course, you are looking for something to push you over the brink into totally insanity. other than my ill-advised trip to michael's, though, i totally recommend spending your weekend the same way i did.

like baking gingerbread cookies with my new ninja cookie cutters. delicious and skilled in the art of stealth.

and also like listening to a performance of "the messiah" at the national cathedral. talk about a gorgeous piece of music in a gorgeous building. it was a perfect way to celebrate the real meaning of the season.

and, check this out. we have a christmas tree! and it is white and it is wonderful!

my dream of a silver christmas tree was slightly modified, but we really love this white one. plus, it has some silver tinsel on it. and big, colorful ornaments. and even some gold butterflies. and we turn it on every night and bask in its christmas glow. i might not ever take it down. fair warning.

now i just have a stack of fabric to turn into stockings and a bunch of skeins of yarn to turn into a wreath and we'll be ready!

and, the good times continued today. liz and i hit up the holiday market on F street, where we stayed for approximately three seconds before we were frozen to our bones, but luckily that was enough time for a bag of freshly made mini-donuts. and then we grabbed some dinner at ella's pizza. doesn't have anything to do with christmas, but it sure was delicious.

and a happy monday to you!

Friday, December 3, 2010


if you want to maintain the holiday spirit and your love of thoughtful gift-giving, do not read this article. i mean, it's interesting stuff, but it is also totally depressing. and, i think, sort of untrue. i love getting, and giving gifts even if it is economically inefficient. so there.

if you want to laugh out loud and wish that you were surrounded by hilarious children all the time (is it just me?) by all means read this piece about letters from kids to michelle obama. a few of my favorites:

Dear Michelle Obama,
I think your husband should legalize immigration. Please put a statue of me in Echo Park. Thank you. J.K. No, really. I want a tuxedo on the statue.
— ANDRES ORTEGA, age 11, Los Angeles

Dear Michelle Obama,
Hi, we are 10 and 9 years old. We live in Boston. We hope you send letters back to us.
I think that you should shut down cigarette and liquor companies and try to keep drugs off the streets. Robots may be able to help you. We all appreciate your hard work to make America better.
— AIDAN SHEILL-LOOMIS, age 9, and NICOLAS ALLEN, age 10, Boston

i think those kids are really onto something with the robot suggestion.

Thursday, December 2, 2010


all year EH and i have been saying that we feel about three months behind. and wouldn't you know it but here it is december 2nd and the year is just about over. what in the world?

maybe it's the three-months-off thing, or maybe it's the fact that it was 60 degrees earlier this week and there are still leaves on the trees for crying out loud, but the christmas spirit has been a little slow coming around. i can't believe i am going to say this out loud on the internet, but a little snow might help.

but, since i don't control the weather (and since i will hate the snow literally the moment it starts to fall) here are some other plans to bring in the holiday cheer.

for starters (and this one is sort of cheating because it already happened), AWD and i saw the joffrey ballet perform "the nutcracker" at the kennedy center last weekend. nothing starts the holiday season off like "the nutcracker," if i do say so myself. it was a completely gorgeous production, and the grand paus de deux with the sugar plum fairy and the nutcracker prince made me cry. just saying.

numero dos. my mom sent me an advent calendar (only 24 chocolate days until christmas!) and the "glee" christmas album. i am very happy about both of these things.

three. i am going to decorate the house this weekend. i decided i wanted a silver christmas tree this year (if you are going faux, why not also go funky, right?) and i am going to sew us some stockings and maybe make this wreath. i really like having a house decorated for christmas.

fourthly. the office secret santa extravaganza starts next week. all i have to say about that is, if i am your secret santa you should be really, really happy. if i am not your secret santa, you should be really, really jealous.

fiver. lots of cookies and hot chocolate. and maybe some christmas movies. we currently have a TV on loan at our house, so we might as well take advantage of it. right? right.

sixthly, there are all kinds of awesome christmas things going on around d.c. and i fully intend to not whimp out about the increasingly cold weather and take advantage of as many as i can. this includes nightly prayers that aunt joyce will invite me to see the white house christmas decorations again this year. (aunt joyce, do you read my blog?)

what are you doing to spread the holiday cheer?