Fat Tuesday & Lent

Remember when you were younger,
and Fat Tuesday/ Mardi Gras
meant wild parties and beads?
You probably don’t because you were SO wasted at the time.
Well, do you want to hear how I spent my Fat Tuesday?
At the dentist.
With my family.
All five of us had our cleanings and check-ups.
We’re all sparkly and cavity-free, so I’ll drink to that!
I went to work after like most responsible adults.
I did have pancakes for dinner- apparently, that’s a Fat Tuesday thing. 
Who knew?!
Then I realized it was time to pick something to “give up” for Lent.
What was my sacrifice going to be this year?
You may remember my lenten obligation last year from this post, and this one, or my personal favorite, this one.
So I felt I had to pick something this year that would be just as challenging and rewarding as last year
After googling some ideas with my sister-in-law,
and discussing the topic with my friend at work,
it hit me.
I had to give up shopping.
But.  I. Don’t. WAAAAAAANT. To.
(Whaaaaaaaah- whiny cry)
Since I usually decide what to give up for lent,
by what would be the hardest for me to give up,
I knew as soon as I resisted the urge to suggest shopping
that it had to be the thing to go.
It is a sacrifice, afterall, right?
It shouldn’t be easy.
But I’m going to need your help.
Help me delete all of the Groupon deals in my inbox.
Help me ignore Target’s Daily Deals that are texted to me 5 days a week.
Help me ignore the bargain websites that completely change their inventories on a daily basis, and that tempt me to see what’s available today.
Oh, cute little shopping cart icon at the top right corner of my screen-
stop staring at me.
I know you are empty.
I know you long to be filled.
But… patience is a virtue.
There is nothing I need right now.
I’ll see you again in 45 days.

Top 10 Reasons I’ve been MIA…

Since I can’t possibly write about Valentine’s Day
and current craziness
until I’ve properly recognized past craziness
(yes, I am Type A- why do you ask?),
 I’ve decided to do a very quick and dirty list of the
Top 10 Reasons I’ve been MIA
to catch up.
1. I’m still tired from the feast we had on Thanksgiving.
The spread was delicious and plentiful.
My mom always knows how to make me gain 10 pounds in one sitting…
2. I’ve been watching paint dry.
My kitchen cabinet paint to be more specific.
(Don’t judge the messiness of my counters… this was a one-time only messy day-
every other day my house is kept perfectly in order.)
(Sorry- these pics were taken with my cell phone)
3. I’ve been welcoming new life into the world.
What have you been doing?
My nephew, Gabriel Stephen Anthes,
was born on December 12.
Even though Addi’s first response was, “I don’t want a boy baby- I want a girl baby,”
the kids all fell in love with their new cousin,
who they affectionately call,
“Baby Gabe-y.”
4. It’s a long way to the North Pole.
We saw Santa 4 different times.
The girls saw him at my work…

Then we saw him at the Spotsylvania Christmas Parade…

Then he was nice enough to come to Kaia’s school…

And he even stopped by early on Christmas Eve to drop off some new jammies!
(Here we are spying on him from inside Grammy’s house)

5. I’ve been trying to figure out if Addi ever robbed a bank,
which mask looks best?

I know, I know.
While the penguin hat is by FAR the cutest,
it would HAVE to be the blue one purely to maintain anonymity.
6. I’m still picking up wrapping paper from Christmas and risking my phalanges trying to remove toys from their ridiculous packaging.
Santa was generous to our babies.
Aidan’s pile
Aidan’s favorite gift (he asked Santa for it every. time. he. saw. him. this. year.)
Vampire teeth… I promise I haven’t let him watch Twilight!
Kaia’s pile
Her favorite gift from Santa this year…
A Fur-Real Kitty (the realest cat that will ever enter our house!).
Addi’s pile
With her favorite toy from Santa…
Dora Magic Fairy Doll (shocker.  This girl LOVES her some Dora.)
And our relatives were even MORE generous.

Seriously, my kids are at risk of being nonchalant about Christmas morning and more excited about opening presents from their grandparents, aunts, and uncles.

We are blessed.
7. I’ve been practicing my rock skipping, roller skating, dancing,
bowling, hiking, and planking.
(not necessarily all at once.)
Rock Skipping with Uncle Cliffy… 

Roller Skating with the Aunts, Uncles, and Sato cousins.
Just Dance 3 with the siblings…

Bowling with my kiddoes…

Hiking with my fellow Dukes…

 …and planking because it’s still cool.
8. I’m buried under piles of Addi’s laundry.
Little Miss Fashion Queen has discovered the art of “layering.”
While it is extremely adorable, it triples the amount of laundry I do on the weekend.
Thanks, Addi! 
No, really, I didn’t want to do anything else anyways!
Unfortunately, I just realized I don’t have a great photo to depict her “style.”
I’ll have to add that to my to-do list…
9.  I’m laughing so hard my side hurts.  BWAHAHA-OUCH!   
That is what I call being a serious Clay Aiken fan.
Go BIG or Go Home.
10. I’m in hiding.  It’s as simple as this- ya see, I’m kinda raising a redneck.
Aidan’s latest book at the school library…
wait for it…
’nuff said.
Now I’m back in business!
Thanks for staying with me, folks-
I promise it won’t be 3 months until I write again…
unless it is.