To Love Somebody – 9 Year Anniversary

In 1967, Robin and Barry Gibb wrote To Love Somebody for Otis Redding, who unfortunately died in a plane crash before having the chance to record the song. Subsequently, the Bee Gees released the song on their debut album, Bee Gees 1st. For those of you who are only familiar with The Bee Gees in the realm of disco fever, I highly recommend listening to their early recordings which are rooted in soul. In fact, a cover of To Love Somebody has been making the social media rounds due to its use in a Coca Cola Life commercial that brought me the happiest of tears (embedded below).

Today marks our nine year wedding anniversary. Nine years ago today I threw up in bushes outside of the reception hall, fell down the grand staircase, and married my best friend. The highlight reel of our marriage so far includes painful goodbyes, too short phone calls filled with static, sweet handwritten letters, beyond joyful reunions, intimate pregnancy announcements, harrowing miscarriages, the miracle of birth, multiple moves, too many addresses to remember, messy rooms cluttered with toys, and stolen moments that remind us of the two young kids who fell hard in love.

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To the outside world, our story likely seems ordinary. To some, it may even appear mundane. But to us, it is nothing short of extraordinary. That is the beauty about love – we all think our stories are the greatest and for the history books. As Color Me Badd sang, “Disconnect the phone so nobody knows. Let me light a candle, so that we can make it better. I wanna s…” Oops. Wait, that is totally the wrong lyric.  Why don’t I end with some Queen instead?

You’re the best friend
that I ever had
I’ve been with you such a long time
You’re my sunshine
And I want you to know
That my feelings are true
I really love you
You’re my best friend

Happy Anniversary, Clay. I love you more than Sour Patch Kids. And that is saying something.

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It’s the Most Wonderful Time of the Year

Due to an insanely busy first half of December and crazy winter weather, we haven’t made our way into DC to see the National Christmas tree yet. Or participate in any Christmas events on the National Mall. I have made Christmas cookies though. Priorities.

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Clay is working half-days this upcoming week so we’re hoping to squeeze in as many Christmas activities as we can before we leave for what we’re calling our 2013 Christmas Tour of the South. Shopping! Christmas lights! Christmas pageants! And more!

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That isn’t to say that we haven’t exercised our Christmas cheer this year – far from it. On Friday, one of our neighbors hosted a Christmas party complete with Santa, a gift-exchange, and plenty of food and drink. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, our neighbors are absolutely wonderful. And I am slightly embarrassed to admit that I may have made an inappropriate comment to Santa about twerking.

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Believe or not, this is the best one of the bunch.

Am I a horrible mom for absolutely loving Violet’s face?

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And then Martha and Edward and crew rolled into town around late Friday night/early Saturday morning on their way home from their Vermont ski trip. I can’t wait until Weston and Violet are old enough to ski…I think a family vacation to Vail is in our future. I can totally ski while wearing Violet in an Ergo, right?

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We spent Saturday afternoon and evening at Tysons Corner Center and had planned to attend Zoo Lights at the National Zoo afterwards but sleet and freezing rain sent us home and ordering-in Chinese food instead. If that doesn’t scream Christmas, I don’t know what does.

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There was a Christmas Cantata at our church this morning. While I ended up walking around the narthex with Violet for the majority of the service, I was still able to enjoy the music. And even though we’re traveling for Christmas, we still fully decorated our house for the season because who doesn’t love Christmas decorations, aside from military movers?

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And finally, I want to share our very first personalized family ornament. I get warm and fuzzy whenever I see it on the tree and it’s not just because of the mulled wine.

Here Comes Santa Claus

Confession: I really do not like mall Santa experience. The long lines, the surly teenage workers that act as if the magic of Christmas isn’t real, the insane price tag for an overexposed picture, and {worst of all} the possibility of a Santa with a polyester beard. Ugh.

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Me and my siblings in our best neon wear. Santa sure does look jolly.

DSC_0159This past Saturday, Weston’s preschool hosted a breakfast with Santa. We attended the event last year and I was tickled red and green to get the required photo op without resorting to a mall Santa. Sadly, Clay missed the event for the second year in a row but that is the way the Christmas cookie crumbles sometimes.

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Weston is all about Kris Kringle and Violet seemed apprehensive during her first visit with the North Pole’s most popular resident. A photo with everybody smiling and looking at the camera wasn’t in our destiny this year but that’s okay. The little guy was thrilled to be able to share his Christmas list (legos, legos, and more legos) with Old St. Nick and I couldn’t help but match his smile as he soaked everything in. Best of all, the pictures I took were free!

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They all saw something.

I was fairly impressed with this natural bearded helper of Santa. Knowing that some children might see him drive to and from the event in his car, he concocted a complex story about needing to park his sleigh at Dulles International Airport due to strict Washington DC air regulations. He explained that he has a rental car for his visit to the area and his sleigh is waiting for him in short-term parking. How can you know love a guy like that?