For the second year in a row, I actually took a break over the Christmas holidays. I did some inbox maintenance and spent a little time on business stuff here and there, but I didn’t write any blog posts and I didn’t work at the studio. I was even pretty quiet on social media.
I spent a lot of time, like entire days, in my jammies. I played video games and board games with Jeff and the boys. I watched TV at night without a computer in my lap. I was a general unproductive loaf, which is not usually my style, but it was welcome and needed.
Unfortunately, I seem to be coming down with a cold or something, so I’m not feeling ready to hit my stride at full speed just yet, but it’s time to start at least heading in that direction.
Before I get into my plans, changes, ideas, and upcoming events for 2017, I thought I would share about my Christmas. Since my boys are 8 & 9, prime ages for a fun Christmas morning, the gifts are a lot more about them, but I did still get some fun things.
I bought an electric guitar this year and have been learning more about the kind of sound I want, pedals, etc, so I asked for a nice reverb pedal. My brother and SIL bought me “The Holy Grail“. Pedal names and electric guitar terms in general crack me up. I mean, who wouldn’t want to Holy Grail for Christmas?
Since my brother has a recording studio and has played in a bunch of bands, he also gave me a pedal lesson and I am excited about the sounds I’m able to get now. I’m really an acoustic guitar player who decided to pick up electric and I’m passable on a basic level, but I’d like to get better. Having nice equipment is a good motivator.
I also got a few gift cards to some of my favorite stores, the Anne of Green Gables series on DVD, a new FitBit (mine was falling apart), a new Redskins sweatshirt, and a few other things.
As a little post-Christmas bonus, my mom took me and my SIL out on a girl’s day shopping trip. We did it last year and it was so much fun that we decided to make it a tradition.
I got a proper winter coat with faux fur fringe around the hood that makes me smile, a few tops, some very comfortable walking/running shoes, some staple long-sleeve tees, and these boots from Bass that I found first thing and were my favorite find of the day…
I’m learning that, with a dog, I need clothes to go outside in all sorts of weather! These boots are so comfy, they are waterproof, and they are cute. Win, win, win. And one more win for the houndstooth laces.
One of my favorite Christmas presents, though, was one we got for our family, Rock Band. I underestimated how much fun it would be. It is funny hearing our boys singing Bon Jovi and the like, though.
I overheard them debating the lyrics of “You Give Love a Bad Name.” Calvin informed Marshall that it’s, “‘Shot through the heart and you’re too late’, because when someone gets shot in the heart, they die.” Good point. I tried to explain the metaphorical heart break, but they are certain that mom has no idea what she’s talking about.
Anyway, just watch for our band, The Parsonic4, to hit the big time.
I also got some sweet surprises from a few of my readers. I love these clip-on candle holders that Lisa sent me…
I found just the place for them.
Another reader sent me a beautiful antique tea towel and yet another sent a bread board with a hand-painting of a gingerbread house I made last year.
As for gifts I gave… lots of Legos and other things boys like. I bought my SIL watercolors, brushes, and paper, since she expressed an interest in them and I told my brother I would be all over that gift! We painted together Christmas afternoon, which was relaxing and so fun to share tips I’ve learned over the past few months.
And, speaking of watercolors, I painted two watercolors to frame and give as gifts. One was of “Disco” and “Harley”, my in-laws orange tabby cats who passed away a couple of years ago. I saw a snapshot of them snuggling as kittens when I was at their house for Thanksgiving and decided to paint it for them.
I also painted a brook trout for Jeff, who is a fly fisherman, to hang in his office.
I had both of them custom-matted and put in a stock frame, so they looked very custom, but weren’t as expensive as a full custom framing job.
So, all in all, it was a great Christmas. And, now it’s time to start looking ahead to 2017. I am basically booked up through June, so I feel a little overwhelmed with it already, but there are lots of exciting things that will be rolling out this year and I’m looking forward to the renewed focus January brings.
How was your Christmas?