Lillia 1 of 52 (2017)
Zane 1 of 52 (2017)
Lillia 2 of 52 (2017)
Zane 2 of 52 (2017)
Lillia 3 of 52 (2017)
Zane 3 of 52 (2017)
Lillia 4 of 52 (2017)
Zane 4 of 52 (2017)

Lillia: This month you’ve been planning and scheming about fun things to do with your friends. I am really happy that you are interested in cultivating your friendships – socializing can be fraught with peril at your age and I think sometimes you are intimidated by that prospect. I can’t say I blame you, and I think you are right to be cautious (but optimistic). You’ve been working on setting up a Dungeons & Dragons group for your friends at our house, with your dad serving as the Dungeon Master (he has some experience in this area). It finally came together one Saturday afternoon and you all had a great time. Your next big plan is to go to New York City with your friend to see a musical – how exciting! We’ll do our best to make it happen.

Zane: This month brought you many “firsts.” You made your first gingerbread house; you welcomed your first baby cousin, sweet little Kyla; you made kolacky (pronounced “ko-loch-ky”), a yummy Slovak cookie, for the first time with Mémé; and you attended your first dance class at Moco. What a busy month! You also received your very first “Academic Best” award from the school principal—you are so proud of your medal. This year I’m going to try and share more of the things you say. Here are a couple of recent gems.

A conversation we had:
Zane: Sometimes Joe has peanut butter and Donatello sandwiches for lunch.
Mama: Donatello? I’m not sure what that is . . .
Zane: You know, it’s like melted chocolate?
Mama: Oh, Nutella!

A quote from Zane:
You know what I love about living on the Earth? That my feet aren’t actually touching the ground – there’s a tiny crack between my feet and the ground. So, it’s like I’m floating.

It’s my last chance to say, “Merry Christmas” to all of you! While the secular Christmas season ended on December 25th, those of us adhering to the liturgical calendar (or, trying to, anyway) are just winding down what is known as Christmastide or the 12 Days of Christmas (from which the carol derives its name), which came to a close yesterday on Twelfth Night. We’ve entered a new season today with the Feast of the Epiphany, or Three Kings’ Day, which celebrates the visitation of the Magi to the infant Jesus. We had a peaceful Advent and a joyful Christmas here at our house, and we hope you did, too.

advent and christmas
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The dust of the travelled road
Shall touch my hands and face.

— from “The Road and the End” by Carl Sandburg

Every year I take more pictures than what ultimately makes it to my blog. I’m not as prolific a photographer as I used to be, which is sad in its own way, but I thought it might be worthwhile to share a few outtakes from the past year. I feel like 2016 was particularly difficult and painful for a lot of people, for a lot of different reasons. Around here we’re battling a family-wide virus that arrived mid-December and looks set to follow us through to the very end of the calendar year—I’ve drawn a line in the sand at 11:59 p.m. on December 31st, and it better not try to cross it. Here’s to looking back but moving forward!

2016 1
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2016 4
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2016 16
2016 17
2016 18
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2016 20
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2016 22
2016 23
zane birthday banner
2016 24
two mushrooms
zane and daddy
michaelmas spread2016 26
chinese lantern soft doll (made Oct 2016)
preserving autumn leaves 4
My cat is enormous.
2016 30
2016 28
2016 29