We've made it home. The kids are at friends' house already. I'm sitting at Martelli's enjoying some time on the net and coffee.
Christmas was good. The kids made out like bandits this year. Their aunt and uncle (my sister and brother) got together and got them both a $100 gift card. Breezy's to Old Navy and Chaz to American Eagle. We converted Breezy's to an Old Navy/Gap/Banana Republic card. Grandma and Grandpa gave them both a gift card to Best Buy. Another aunt gave Chaz an Itunes card to use with his Zune and Breezy a card to Claires. Last aunt gave Chaz some clothes and Breezy a couple snazzy little purses for Breezy. Last brother is taking them to the Senior Bowl on the 26th. This is the second year they get to go and they get to go to the meet and greet with the players before the game as well.
In February, they'll both get $150 each as well. Their dad sent money that we used on bills and Christmas so I give them the full amount when tax refund comes in. On top of that, I'll add another $50 so they'll get a little shopping done then. I'll send them with friends though. I'm not sure I can handle the mall any more!
I got a gift card to Martellis, Target, and Joanns. I gave the kids money to buy me gifts. They did well. Breezy picked out the awesome pottery I showed her at Cordova Mall and Chaz chose a set of plates in my favorite color from Target. They both visited the glass blower booth at the mall. One piece says Mom with a heart and rose and the other is a brightly colored rooster. What they didn't realize was I used to collected the little glass blown pieces and had given them all away several years ago when we didn't have room for them. So these are extra special. :o)
I played 313 against my sister yesterday and this morning. Final score? Me - 4 wins, Her - 10 wins. So to say the least, I've had my tail kicked at cards this week! LOL
And the funny part of Christmas was Sunday night. We've had our tree up for 2 weeks with just lights on it. Sunday night I went to the laundry room to get the decorations and found the bag of beads that has been missing for 7+ months!!! That bag of beads has been a running joke between Andrea and I for months. And now I find it!
I did make 2 bracelets, 1 anklet, 3 pairs of earrings and 3 necklaces in the last 2 days. The one I'm wearing is the boldest. It's got tiny seashells, orange, olive, and turquoise glass beads, wood beads, some coral, a few pewter beads, and some little tiny birds made from shell. I think it's the bomb-diggity. Andrea will laugh when she sees it. Those orange beads are another running joke between us.
The other two necklaces are 6 feet long. One in black and red using red coral, new picasso jasper, and black glass beads. The other is peace jade, amethyst, and glass beads. Both of these have little birds in them as well. I'm hoping to sell them both. My sister seems to think I need to charge $60 a piece for them. We'll see.
Last week was the 5 year anniversary of my divorce. February will mark the the end of 8th year I've been single parenting. It's been tough. Sometimes I get frustrated being alone. I feel majorily unappreciated. Other times, I'm very content to be a single parent. I don't have to deal with things other single parents have to deal with. You know, like the kids being at one parent's house one week and the other parent's house the next week. Two sets of rules. We have one set of rules. Mine.
I'm trying to raise my children to walk with God. He is the final authority on things in our house. If their dad was involved, then we'd have one house following God and one who's not. And in that house is an alcohol problem and a lack of respectfulness. I'm not sure I could deal with that. So I'm grateful for being alone in that way.
Still.... One day.
God, I am grateful for a year of new beginnings. A year of the new. A year of changes and things to come. I am grateful for my children, my family, my church family. I am grateful for a great job (even when I don't feel appreciated).