I've blogged several times about my very serious dislike of Christmas. Many of you may be shocked to know that this year, I have decided to embrace my inner Clark Griswold and we will "have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny Kaye. And when Santa squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he's gonna find the jolliest bunch of assholes this side of the nuthouse" (if you don't recognize what blockbuster this quote came from, we may have to rethink our friendship!?)
Why do I want to make this Christmas so memorable? Because this is the year of "the lasts". Last soccer game, last basketball game, last homecoming, last prom. Last Spring Break. Next Christmas, we hope that Hannah and Sarah will be enjoying their independence while attending Seattle University.
I know they'll come home for the holidays, it just won't be the same. So, this year, I'm doing all the things I've always wanted to do with Marc and the girls. We're having a cookie exchange (Call me if you want to come, otherwise, watch for your invitation! We're going to have a baking day. Maybe even do a Gingerbread house! There will be the traditional nice dinner out followed by driving around in a huge van, all 13 of us Pongon's and go look at Christmas lights. And most importantly, this year I am following through on my desire to help at a shelter.
Hannah is the most excited about getting a real tree. We've used an artificial tree because of my asthma. I'm going to give Hannah money and let her buy any decorations she wants. And, I'm not taking the tree down on the 26th. Yes, I usually get my house back to normal ASAP!
Thanksgiving will be at the "other" Pongon house this year. We'll be dining on some delicious chickens they've been using as pets. Ha ha! Not really. It was be another great day of competition: Lisa's traditional turkey, or Michael's deep fryer. I think the score is Lisa 2, Michael 3? I could be wrong. The best part of Thanksgiving, other than left overs, is watching "Elf" and "Christmas Vacation" Then, at 12:01 AM, its Christmas! The Christmas CD's will be dusted off. I'm getting excited myself! The final tradition is my sister answering her phone with "Buddy the Elf, what's your favorite color?" She does it from Thanksgiving through Christmas. My answer is always the same: yellow.
Instead of sending out a Christmas Letter, I'll give you the update right here!
Marc: it's been a tough year for my Superman. He works so hard taking care of his girls. The last 4-years he coached soccer at Fort Vancouver HS along with my niece Kathleen. They didn't win a single game during that time, but just from what Marc has told me and what I witnessed, they had a great time; these girls will look back on their high school days of playing soccer, and remember how much fun Coach Marc was. This year he is at Mt.View as the assistant Varsity coach and it's been so great that he finally gets to watch Hannah and Sarah play. He still works at Vision Star, still loves soccer. He has a deep faith and has been an excellent role model for Hannah and Sarah. Almost too much of an excellent role model, as those girls have him wrapped around their fingers! I told him he has to stop cutting up their meat (Yep, not joking) and cleans their rooms. These girls are going to have a hard time finding a husband that even comes close to being the man their father is.
Me: Shortly after curing cancer, I was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize in medicine. After that, I figured out how to reverse Global Warming, childhood obesity and wait.....OK, um, er, that wasn't the truth. 2012 has been an interesting year. I'm still "sick" most days, but every now and then God gives me some good days. I cherish those days! I'm still a smart ass and still use humor at inappropriate times. I do have one guilt pleasure; it's watching reality TV. I am especially hooked on all the Housewife's shows except for the one filmed in Atlanta. I did draw a line after seeing 2 episodes of "Honey Boo Boo". I'm also an avid viewer of the true crime shows like "48 Hours" All in all, I'm pretty boring.
Hannah: My oldest by just 5-seconds is definitely the oldest child. She is a joy to have around and also has a great sense of humor. She's still looking at colleges. She is pretty excited about all that her future holds. She is an excellent cook. She's recently been promoted to COO of the kitchen. She does a fair amount of grocery shopping and is an amazing cook. She is doing very well at school and loves being a Senior. She's a defender on varsity soccer. She still loves to sleep, just like when she was a baby. The old saying is true: "Enjoy every minute you have with your children, because they grow so fast." They really do. I can't believe how fast time has gone. Hannah has a tender heart and loves babysitting her cousins.
Sarah: The baby of the family. She is funny, kind, beautiful and really, really freaking smart. She has applied for an ARMY ROTC scholarship. Why the Army? It's the only branch of the military that offered her preferred major- sports medicine and kinesiology. She has always had a desire to be in the military. She'll be the first female soldier in our family. I remember in 1st grade, right after the 9/11 tragedy she insisted on wearing a US Flag pin on her shirt every single day! She is very patriotic and loves her country. The Army will be lucky to get her!
In other exciting news- our family is expecting some additions! We already had one exciting surprise when we saw a video on Facebook that said "Play Me". The video was of my nephewZachary getting married! They have been a couple for many, many years, and we all adore the new Mrs. Chandler.
My nephew Beau, and his beautiful wife will be welcoming beautiful Molly Claire in just a few weeks. They are so excited and Kristen looks great. I don't think she gained a pound! They're in Florida, where Beau is stationed with the Navy. It would be great if he could get stationed closer to home! And, the Grand Finale: my goddaughter Kathleen, and her husband Michael, are pregnant! Baby is due in April. We all feel so blessed by all the gifts God has given to our family.
I'll close this with my early Thanksgiving list of things I'm thankful for. In no particular order:
- Becoming a "great" Aunt again
- My amazing husband who brings home the bacon and fries it up in a pan
- My healthy, beautiful, graceful, and intelligent daughters
- That I have both my parents who are still head over heels in love
- My dog Daisy. She's my cuddle buddy, unless Hannah is home- then I don't exist
- My big sister Lori. There aren't enough adjectives to describe her, so I'll pick my top three:
- She's HILARIOUS
- She has a loving heart
- She loves my children as her own
"Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens"