When we sent out our holiday cards (pictured; made from one of the embroidered photos I’ve been doing since the summer), I made a note to my cousins in Issaquah that we didn’t have any solid plans for Christmas and we’d love to see them. They sweetly invited us up, so Nat and I opened our gifts at home Friday night. He made me a forest, since I recently got my own office at work and lost the giant windows of my old workspace, and he knows winter is tough for me. It’s a music box, and it plays You Are My Sunshine. I sobbed for about five minutes after opening it. All I made him was another volume in our endless series of “year books,” 2010 and 2011 ? I did spend about a hundred hours putting it together, but it’s still not as cool as handmade trees that play the song that’s so close to my heart.

My cousins’ house/neighborhood is gorgeous, and their kids are so great. They had so much fun playing with Cody over the two days we spent there (bless that dog, I had forgotten how much I love him for playing so well with kids, and following me around a big house wherever I go). I was pretty pleased with the gift of “Chubby Puppies” that we had gotten the girls, since the thing they wanted most was a puppy. Christmas evening, we went out and saw Star Wars. The first one I’d ever intentionally watched, and I actually made it through! (I only fell asleep for about five minutes.)

I somehow didn’t take my camera out of my bag the whole time! So these are all iPhone photos. As good as the camera is, I hope this is the last time I have to go through and upload photos in a way so different from my normal process. Routine oriented for life. Off to write my 2017 goals now!