Ho Ho Holidays & Lucky 13

The back-to-back holiday season came and went, and now we’re sitting well into 2013 – which I have declared as Lucky 13 (positive thinking, ya know)!

When last I posted, it was just before Halloween. So, I’ve got a lot to cover here, and the Nelson Gang has been buuuuuuusy!

Maddox dressed up as Spiderman for Hallows Eve. Hunter was an astronaut. We raced around our neighborhood with our good friends / neighbors, the Arbuckles, again this year. Hunter was ALL over it. He better understood what the night was all about…race around and beg for candy! Woo hoo! Maddox, on the other hand, didn’t really get it, but he wanted so desperately to keep up with the big kids. He just ran after them holding out his pumpkin bucket for the prize. The best part of the night (read embarrassing for the parents) was when Hunter asked one of our neighbors why their house was so messy! (OMG, what did he just say!?) Well…there’s something to say about honesty, right?

Next holiday on the docket? Thanksgiving. It was relatively quiet, as we only had the four of us and Grammy. But, not to be deterred from a small crowd, Eric decided this was the year to try a Turducken (sp?). Yes folks, that’s a chicken inside of a duck inside of a turkey. And, yes, I said we only had three adults and the two boys here. But BOY, can you say YUM!? Check out the photos. Eric was so proud. And, yes…we still have some in the freezer.

The rest of 2012 was all the more exciting. We definitely had our fair share of interesting maladies. First it was hand, foot and mouth disease – NOT mad cow disease – hand, foot and mouth. I’d never heard of it before my sweet lil’ darlings suffered through it.

It’s just like chicken pox, a virus, so there’s really nothing you can do but let it run it’s course. And, it’s highly contagious among the six and under crowd. And, best of all, it was a really bad year for it here, apparently. Polka dots in all places imaginable, plus on the hands, feet and in the mouth, ears, etc. Hence the name. Mr. Maddox got it first and just when we thought Hunter was going to miss it, he had his own, albeit, milder version. Then, the really interesting part is that several weeks later when we’d forgotten all about it, the boys’ fingernails and toenails started falling off. Bizarro!

That malady ended, and then we began a delightful rendition of pass-the-intestinal bug. BOTH versions. Woohoo. What a fun time at the Nelsons! That went around a couple of times, including short bouts for me and Eric. All I can say is, thank God we got our flu shots!

For the past couple of weeks we’ve had various versions of sniffles, coughs and fevers. Mr. Maddox even decided this would be a perfect time to get in all four I-teeth at the same time. I swear I’ve never bleached more surfaces, washed more sheets (multiple times in a week) and soaked more babies in the bathtub. Good grief.

All I wanted for Christmas was a good night’s sleep! Just kidding (well…not really).

We DID get a wonderful surprise for Christmas. Nana and Papa Nelson came for a weeklong visit. Christmas was so exciting and crazy at our house this year…it was great for them to come and witness it firsthand. The boys got adequately spoiled from Santa, and all uncles and aunts and grandparents (greats, too)…it was ridiculous. Our house was pure chaos with new toys for days.

In addition to the Christmas madness, we had all kinds of fun during Nana and Papa’s visit. Deb helped me make 220 cinnamon rolls. 160 of them were for church, as it was our turn to bring the after-service snack. It was AWESOME. We used the convection oven at the church. So, just as the service ended, we brought out the pipin’ hot, gooey morsels. Everyone oowed and ahhed as they came around the corner and smelled the cinnamon. I’m sure we could have had our own Pavlov’s study right there. The rest of the cinnamon rolls were distributed to friends and neighbors. Oh, and of course, we all ate a few…plates of ’em ourselves! (Good thing we lost all that weight with the intestinal bugs!)  🙂

One day Nana and Papa accompanied us to the zoo, to see the brand new baby elephant, Lily. We also took a drive out to Newport with the boat. We had hoped to go crabbing, but the weather had been horrible on the coast for several days and we heard the good word from the locals that the crabbing wasn’t any good. So, we just did some shopping in the cute bayfront shops and then brought home some fresh oysters for Eric to cook up. We also took some of our previously caught fresh crab out of the freezer and Eric made crab cakes. Uhhhh yummy!

Later in the week, the clouds parted and we had a day of beautiful sunshine. Nana and Papa took the boys up to Silver Falls State Park for a hike. We also had an overnight visit from Aunt Layna and cousins Melanie and Kalyn. It was so fun to see them and the boys truly enjoyed all of the extra attention.

Nana and Papa ended their trip by heading up to Seattle to stay with Layna, Nadar and the girls for a couple of days before flying home to Iowa. No sooner had they pulled the car out of the driveway for Seattle, Hunter said, “So, I guess we’re gonna go to Nana and Papa’s house tomorrow, huh?” I asked him why he thought that was the plan and he said, “Cuz I miss them.” (aaaaaaaaahhhhhhhh, full head tilt) Likewise, Maddox kept pointing up the stairs and saying, “Nana? Papa?” randomly for a few days. Pure cute. (of course, I’m a little biased)

Now we’re well into the swing of 2013. Happy New Year, by the way. As I mentioned at the outset, I am determined that this is going to be a very lucky year…for us, for our families, for the world. We’ve just GOT to have some positivity to hold on to. Why not start within your own mind first. Right!?

In memory of all the tragedies our world had seen in the last month or so. Please accept this virtual hug from the Oregon Nelsons. We love you more than you’ll ever know. Please pass the peace and hugs on to the friends and family members you hold dear, wherever you are.

Bring on 2013! We’re ready for the LUCK! 🙂

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