Susan Spess Shay

Still playing make believe.


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Christmas is Coming (and there’s nothing we can do about it.)

How’s your December going? Everything on schedule? All decorated and wrapped, just waiting for the big guy to make his appearance?

Is anybody out there waving your hand, yelling, “Me! Me! Me!”? If so, come on over to my house.

I need help.

(Big surprise.) (Not.) 😀

One thing I am staying on top of is my daily reading, “The Greatest Gift” by Ann Voskamp. I have to fight myself to keep from reading ahead.

If I ever met this woman, I’ll have to give her a big hug.

I do have one tree up and decorated. It’s the wild tree with ornaments from friends and from my kiddos when they were small and ones I’ve made and they’ve made. It’s my favorite tree.

My other tree is also my favorite tree. It has Grandmother’s ornaments on it. And some antique ornaments I’ve collected. I can’t share it with you today because it’s not up yet.

I will share some of my ornaments from my Everything Tree. They aren’t my favorites, because I don’t have favorites. Trying to chose the one I like best would be like trying to choose the friend I liked best. Or my favorite Bible verse. I just can’t do it.

But I can share some with you.

treeThis one was made by a friend.

tree-2

A can lid, turned into a beautiful tree by one of my kiddos. (Trash to Treasure. A miracle of Christmas.)

tree-3

Another treasure, made by one of my kiddos.

tree-4

Dirty Santa ornament exchange with my writing sisters. I love, love, love these.

tree-5

Three of my best gifts ever–Danny, Matt and Brad.

tree-6

A friend was taking a stained glass class the year I got this one. It’s too heavy for a “real” tree, so I had to start buying fake ones just so it could be on it. 😀

tree-7

From my secret sister once, years and years ago. That friend was a sweetheart and I miss her terribly.

tree-8

I bought this bunch of unbreakable ornaments the year Danny was 11 months old on Christmas. The still give me a smile.

I have OSU ornaments from when my boys were in college, a dog and cat ornament because we’re pet people, and lots of stars. I love stars. They’re a great reminder. Read Philippians 2:15 and see if you can guess just one of the reasons why. Of course, you’ll need to read it in the New International Version to see what I’m talking about. 😉

My absolute favorite thing at Christmas? The best gift. The best feeling. The best anything?

There's only one gift better than this.

There’s only one gift better than this.

nativity

The gift of salvation.

Any hints for getting everything done, finished, baked, wrapped and gorgeous before Dec. 24th? I need all the help I can get!

 

 

 

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Oh, Wow! Oh, Wow! OOOOOOOH, WOW!!!!

I’M A GRANDMOMMY!!!!

Yes, I’m screaming! And I’m doing a lot of (virtual) jumping up and down and dancing on the ceiling! Because . . . I’M A GRANDMOMMY!

I haven’t shared before today because I needed permission (I do not want to get banned from baby adoring!)

And know what? He is gorgeous! Beautiful! And BRILLIANT!!!

♥ ♥ ♥

dannyThis isn’t our new grandbaby. This is our son, the baby’s daddy. Born on his due date, five pounds, thirteen ounces of perfect baby boy.

And our new little pumpkin looks a lot like this. 😀

Want to know what it feels like to be a brand new, first time, week old grandmommy? I can tell you.

It’s like . . .

  • Winning the Boston Marathon without running a step
  • as you win a jillion, million dollar lottery without buying a ticket
  • while winning the Irish Sweepstakes without even trying.
  • at the same time as you get the world best, biggest, sweetest, most coveted award for just being alive!!!

Funny thing is, being a grandmommy makes you (me, at least) kind of gah, gah. I find myself holding our little guy close to my heart and just gazing at the boy. Even his cry is music to my ears–except it usually means it’s time for him to eat. Again. 🙂

I’ve offered to go over in the night to hold him so his parents can sleep, but they haven’t taken me up on that yet. Probably a good thing, too. I think it takes young people to be what a kiddo needs.

Besides, my son and his wife have everything under control. Any question they have, they Google and find the answer. (And since my DIL’s sister is a OB-GYN with a nine-month-old of her own, anything they can’t find, Sister knows!)  Need an extra pair of arms? There’s a thing you can wrap all around you and the baby so he’s snugged right up to you and he’ll never slip. Need a place for him to sleep close by but where he won’t get squished? There’s a nest that’ll fit right in your bed where he’ll be safe.

They have all the answers!

And yes, the knitter in me has been busy, too. baby-hatBaby’s new hat! I made it a little big on purpose, so he can grow into it. (That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!)

baby-bootiesAnd if you believe I made the hat large on purpose, maybe you’ll believe I made his high tops too big for that reason, too! 😀

At least they’ll be there when he’s ready for them.

baby-hand-1This is Granddaddy, holding a brand-new precious hand while Daddy holds his other hand.

baby-hand-2Doesn’t it make your heart melt to see grown men take such perfect care of a newborn? (Sniff)

One more picture of my first baby boy when he was just three months old.

baby-danny

New babies are God’s perfect gift. I couldn’t be more excited unless I was twins.

♥ ♥ ♥ 


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Welcome to the SideBar

Did you notice I swopped out the pictures in the sidebar? (On the right.) Don’t beat yourself up if you didn’t. I had to go back and look for them myself, and I did the work! (Rolls eyes.)

With all the cold weather and snowy days we’ve had this year, I thought I’d add a little more to the flakiness. I love the memories the pictures bring back, so I kind of tried to tell a non-verbal story. See if you get it.

The first picture is Mom and Dad on one of our ski trips.

ski-team

The ‘Rents had gone skiing with the church the year I had my first baby. (For some reason–either being extremely prego or having a new nursing baby–G-Man and I didn’t go.)

So when #1 son was almost a year old, they decided to take the entire fam on our first y’all come ski trip.

When they decided to take the trip, Mom called Gaye, a wonderful friend I’d grown up with, who lived at Crested Butte, Colorado. (And she skied every day! Lucky girl.)

Miracle of miracles, Gaye found us a place to stay. (Thanks, Gaye!) It was an entire house, and since we had a few extras (one husband-to-be and several friends) it was perfect.

Gaye even found us a sweet woman for #1 son to stay with while we were there. (Thanks, again, Gaye!)

Mom bought us some of our ski gear for Christmas. Silly me, I asked for gloves, not mittens. Wow! Big mistake.

Mittens might make you look like a little kid, but they keep your fingers much, much warmer! I bought down-filled mittens there on the slopes and I was WARM! Broke, but warm. (Anything you buy on the ski slopes is expensive.)

Dad decided we didn’t need to pay to take ski lessons. He taught us everything we needed to know the morning of the first day. How to stop (make a piece of pie with your skis and sit down on it!) How to turn (Bubbletail, cut some pie and lean into it.)

I was climbing on a very easy-to-navigate ski lift (and getting in better skiers’ way) that afternoon.

A more thoughtful person, G-Man found a hill and practiced all by himself.

ski-pair (2)

This is G-Man and me. I borrowed my ski suit from a friend, who told me to keep it. She had a new one. I loved it! (Thank you, Lana!!!)

Brother Jeffrey and his buddy didn’t bother to learn to traverse the slopes.  They just turned their tips downhill and flew! And they had a great time doing it.

I took some spectacular spills, even though Gary and I stayed on Green (Easy) slopes with an occasional Blue (Medium) thrown in.

The last day of the trip, Dad thought G-Man and I were good enough to go to the backside of the mountain . . . where we found there were only Black (double diamond-HARD!) trails.
Have you ever prayed for a helicopter to come and rescue you? I did that day. 🙂 I think I ended up just sliding down the slope on my backside–which I only thought was cold before I started the slide.
On the way home, we ran into a blizzard. We were in Oklahoma, and experiencing worse weather than Colorado had! The baby didn’t feel good, so it was a long, long trip.
How about that? I just realized this memory is another gift for my list.
I’m oh! So! Very! Grateful!
 
 
 
 
 


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Pass the Hat

We celebrated March birthday parties at work yesterday by going out to eat. We LOVE going out to eat.

Every month, the boss takes the entire crew out. The birthday-ers get to choose the lunch spot. Sadly, there’s not a great big choice in C-Town. And if we go on a Monday or Tuesday, which we usually do, we have even fewer choices because one of the restaurants in our Small Town World is now closed two days out of the week.

And we really don’t have time to get to T-Town on our lunch break.

Omega is in charge of the party, and she’s good at it. She creates the perfect b-day cards, gets everyone to sign them, buys gift certificates, lets the restaurants know what time we’re coming and shoos everyone out the door when it’s time to go.

She also is the daughter-in-charge of helping Dad remember to send cards to his grandkids for their birthdays. It used to be me, but I kept forgetting.

Omega almost never forgets, except when she does. 🙂

So, back to yesterday. We partied at the Mexican restaurant in town. They have a room with long tables in it. Big enough to hold our entire bunch. And just about everyone was there.

We mostly got what we ordered, and had a lot of fun, chatting while we waited.

At the end of the meal, the waiters brought a couple of sombreros for the birthday kids and sang a happy birthday song.

My office mate, Anna.

 Then we play the party game–Pass the Hat. 🙂

 My hat loving buddy.

Yesterday we celebrated Anna’s and Cousin Gary’s birthdays. Sorry I missed a picture op of Gary wearing a dusty, old, pink sombrero. Maybe next time. 😉