25 December 2008

a merry christmas...

 jeremy, kierstin & eli

16 December 2008

while the snow pretends to fall.

the cold, grey-green wintry days have awakened small gusts of creativity in me. it's been good to sneak upstairs to my little studio during eli's rests, with favorite *christmas music on my ipod while i layer paper and paint upon canvas. the songs, and the season itself, have both found their way into this recent work. and my friends amy & katie at red tree coffee[shop] kindly offered them a temporary home on their walls.

*on the playlist:
baby it's cold outside (zooey deschanel)
christmas day (dido)
i heard the bells on christmas day (pedro the lion)
delig er jordan (kings of convenience)
just like christmas (low)


forest in winter.

winter window.

09 December 2008

seeing santa.

on Saturday morning, we took Eli to visit Santa Claus at the Kingston Springs firehouse. there was hot chocolate with mini marshmallows, and Santa held a bucket of candy canes which he doled out by the handful to every child in exchange for their list of wishes. while in line, Eli seemed excited as he watched the other children climb into Santa's lap one by one. i could tell he was anticipating his turn with intense curiosity about the man in the big red suit and polyester beard he would soon meet...

...only when the time came to plop down on the big guy's knee for a photo, fear set in (who could blame him?) and he started to cry. Santa, of course, made sure to look all Santa-y and composed for the picture, despite the meltdown taking place on his lap.

the instant that camera went click, Eli hopped down and made for the snack table where he grabbed two brownies--one in each fist--and headed over to check out the firetrucks (also big and red, but far less menacing).

afterward, we stopped by the coffee shop to visit our friends there, had another brownie (theirs were better), and went to buy our Christmas tree.

i have always dreamed of having an entry hall in which to put my Christmas tree on display, rather than cramming it in the corner of the living room. finally we do, and the tree looks really pretty as the center of attention when you walk through our front door.

we did our usual torture-the-pet-with-antlers photo by the tree that evening after hanging the final ornament. you can't see it, but Sam's crying (on the inside) about having his photo taken with Santa Claus too.

01 December 2008

the mouse who liked cheese, and other tales.

it's been too many days inside this house. between drizzly weather, eli's sickness, and the bit of it that i got after him, there have been few temptations to venture beyond the driveway. over the past ten days, we've watched that Babe the talking pig movie so many times that i half expect our own dog to start asking for his dinner in english.

last night after eli's bedtime, i finished a piece of artwork for my friend jenni and wrapped it up for today's mail. it incorporates the hymn, "Deck Thyself, My Soul, With Gladness".  it took me awhile to interpret and convey all the imagery just right, and i almost gave up a few times. but as with most things, it was worth the labor and struggle to arrive at the beauty of the completed work. or at least, it looks beautiful to me, in large part because of the hymn lyrics, so we'll see what the gift's recipient thinks.

i also packed up a couple of jeremy's CDs to send to my long-lost college roommate Carol who i located via facebook recently. she is living in Germany with her husband and children, and i found curious enjoyment in writing the word Dusseldorf on the envelope with my sharpie marker. [it was probably the two little dots over the u. why don't we have cities with dots over the vowels in america?]

the slight flurry of snow that drifted down this morning as we awoke nudged me toward a real anticipation of Christmas & wintertime. our gift shopping has begun, and i plan to sneak away late this afternoon to check a few more things off the list. soon we'll bring home a tree to adorn the entry hall and pull out the two overflowing boxes of ornaments, lights, & handmade stockings. i am looking forward to seeing this house decorated for Christmas for the first time. 

but first on the agenda is to get a handle on the little would-be "mouse" who seems to have taken up residence in our home lately. after his sickness subsided and he bounced free from chicken broth and pedialyte, eli discovered a luxury known as cream cheese. and he CANNOT STOP EATING IT. of course, as his parents we are monitoring his intake (though frankly, the fat is benefitting his 20 pound frame) but he requests it (no, demands it) morning, noon, and night. it goes something like this:

wake up. bundle up. come downstairs. pour coffee and fill sippy cup. turn to eli & offer a waffle or pancake from the freezer drawer. 

"mama," he replies each time. "i-yant cheese."
then he turns and rushes over to the still-doorless pantry, pulls out the box of crackers (a.k.a delivery devices), reaches his tiny fist inside, produces one, and presents it to me expectantly. i spread it with cream cheese. he licks it off, rendering his nostrils and chin covered, then bites the cracker and reaches in the package for another while still chewing. this repeats throughout the duration of my second cup of coffee.

"i-yant cheese" has become the phrase most often uttered in our household for the past four days.

i am hoping for a thicker dusting of snow so that just maybe he'll put down his cracker long enough to bundle up in a new winter coat and head outside to play. i want to go too.