Tuesday, December 27, 2016

The Plans

I had such plans for this Christmas.  Such plans.  I had wonderful, simple, yet very specific plans for this Christmas.  Oh, the plans.

We were going to get out of school on Friday December 16th and head to St. Louis.  We have longer than two weeks off from work this year because of how Christmas falls, so we planned to take a nice five days and fly to St. Louis to see Hubby's family (and all the nieces and nephews) for a Christmas celebration before Christmas.

Then, we were going to fly back to Colorado on Thursday December 22 early in the morning.  We would then have all day Thursday to get back to Rifle.  Then all day Friday and Saturday (Christmas Adam and Christmas Eve) to prepare for a family Christmas on Sunday.

We would attend church together as a family Christmas Eve, all dressed up in our special Christmas outfits.  We were going to be the Advent family at church that night and read the Bible passage, light the Advent wreath, and say the prayer.  We were going to take a family picture in the front of the Christmas tree... like the one we took last year when I was a million (well, 35) weeks pregnancy with the twins.  Then we were all going to go to sleep in our own home and hope that Santa would come.

We were going to gather at the top of the stairs at our Rifle home Christmas morning and run downs the stairs together to see if Santa arrived.  We were going to take our time as a little family of five and open presents from Santa, and each other, and from our family across the country.  We were going to cook a turkey and mashed potatoes, and green beans, and eat them on paper plates because it means less dishes for me on the Holiday.

Then, we were going to have a whole nother week to just spend as a family in Colorado and reconnect before we jump into a new year, and having two one-year-old toddlers, and a three-year-old toddler.  We were going to take the kids swimming at a nearby rec center.  We were going to plan a day when the baby-sitters would have our kids and Hubby and I would have a date.  We were going to build snowmen with the Christmas snow.  We were going to watch football, and nap when the kids nap, and take a little break from our diet, and just plug in as a family for some quality time just the five of us.

Oh... my plans.

Where do I even start on how these plans did not come about?

I guess I'll start with the fact I'm writing this blog post from St. Louis -- so we clearly did not make it back to Rifle on Thursday, December 22nd.  Everything above that I wrote that we would do in Rifle from the 22nd on has not happened.  The Christmas Eve service, the gathering at the top of the stairs, the naps, the turkey, the date, the rec center, the plugging in for quality time just the five of us... NADA.

What has happened is that not only did we find ourselves needing to buy a vehicle unexpectedly, so we decided we would have better buying options in St. Louis than in Rifle... but all of our children (and I) got sick in multiple ways right before, on, and after Christmas.  So, while being in St. Louis for Christmas would have made a lovely Plan B because of all the family we have here... we were put under quarantine, and kindly discouraged from participating in any family activities (and church services) on December 23rd, 24th, 25th, and 26th.  We might as well have been in Colorado for as much family as we were allowed to see.

Oh... my plans.

Now, Santa did find us in St. Louis and fill our stockings with a few treats.  And our Christmas dinner consisted of delicious chicken noodle soup and corn bread that Aunt Becky made for the sick-oes.

We still will do a Christmas morning of some sort out in Rifle because we still have a lot of lovely gifts from extended family waiting for us there... and a beautiful tree waiting to be enjoyed.  I'm not sure when we will get back there, but I will be the first to admit, there are many worse places we could be around Christmas.  I do wish my children were feeling better, but we are together, we are with Chris' parents (merrily sharing our germs with them), and, as always, we are warm, safe, and fed.  A Christmas not at all according to my plans, but incredibly blessed nonetheless.

Finally, after days of fevers, vomiting, diarrhea, pink eye, coughing, and sniffles (that's right, we ran the spectrum), I was very happy to get this picture of my little ones in pajamas in front of the tree.  It wasn't on Christmas morning, they're not all in Christmas pajamas, and its not our beautiful tree in Rifle, but it is from our Christmas 2016 foiled plans, sick babies and all.

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