Christmas is not over yet!

I really am one of those crazies who can’t get enough of Christmas. I start to miss the season around… March usually. Before Easter even gets going. I just love the spirit, the happiness, the music, and all the lights! And of course, I love that Christmas is a reminder of the birth of Christ, which was such a joyous occasion, a legion of angels sang about it to earthly witnesses! It may not be Jesus’ actual birthday, but God uses it for His glory every year.

And when it comes to the other stuff, sure, it’s far less important, but even God is no stranger to the fun of festivities. So, this year I was super happy to get our tree up about a week before Thanksgiving, because just seeing a tree up gives me those warm fuzzy feelings! And I’m also happy because it’s staying up until mid-January, because we still have some Christmas to take care of! That’s right, Jimmy’s family (all of them!!) are coming to Chucktown to see their littlest members and do some more Christmas stuff. I’ll get to break out the Christmas outfits again. Bake cookies. Open presents. I love it!

And about our actual Christmas Day, I have to say, it was pretty wonderful. We stayed home, in our PJs, played with new toys, ate some good food, watched Frozen and just enjoyed each other. Just me, Jimmy and our two kids. Low-key and, you know, I wouldn’t be upset if that was how our kids remembered Christmas.

I’ve been thinking about traditions, and I want to implement lots of good ones for our kids. We really enjoy St Nicholas Day (candy in your shoe, and don’t forget the orange!) and I love the idea of the Christmas Eve box (pjs, a snack, and a book or movie all meant for that night). Of course, making cookies and watching Christmas movies are great options too. But I want some more meaningful ones too. I didn’t want to go too crazy this year, though. My kids are still babies and I have some time.

Gosh, but these babies are growing so fast! Sam is huge. A couple babies have been born in my circle of friends last month, and comparing him to them is just crazy. But he’s getting rolls, and smiling, and of course he is super strong and loves to move. Sam can roll over both ways now. He is only 11 weeks old and he’s been doing it like a pro for some time. And EV is getting bigger. I find myself looking at pictures from just a month or two ago and seeing such a huge change. She is playing very well with bigger kids, and articulating herself very well. She says “look” and “I’m sorry”and “help” and “all done” and “okay”. Properly. She uses those words how they’re meant to be used. It’s so crazy how fast this is going!

One of the very small gifts I got was a new journal. I am such a journal junkie! But I always have trouble filling journals. Then my mom told be about bullet journaling! It’s so awesome for someone like me, who seriously can’t keep anything straight. I usually like to write diary entries or stories in journals, but I’ve been using this system for my to-dos and ideas, and it’s working pretty well for me. I might try hand-lettering with it. I might start a different blog, like, one for making money and contributing to society and all that, and use my bullet journal to guide me. I’ve played with the idea of podcasting too. I used to have a radio show back in the day, kind of. I loved it. It was fun, and I don’t know, I just love the idea of having a creative outlet. My problem has never been dreaming. It’s been executing.

So we will see what the future holds! But for now, I’m super excited to keep on with my Christmas and watch these kiddos grow. Family has been so worth every sacrifice to me.

New Year’s was not super exciting in this house. That’s what we can expect for a while if we want to spend it with the kids.  But we did open a coconut, like we do every year, and Jimmy made Pina Colada pancakes, which were delicious! We might have to add that to our coconut ritual.

 Happy New Year!

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Christmas with the Kramers

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Greetings friends and family!

Christmas has come and gone super quickly (like a certain little girl’s 8 months) and the Kramers spent their first Christmas ever just being home. It was bittersweet, because of course we wanted to see family! But, I imagine we will have many quiet, homey Christmases to come. Actually, I imagine they will be anything but quiet, but this last Christmas was quiet, and simple, and wonderful!

Now, I would absolutely love to tell you all about the gifts we got, but we got so much! It would be a bit too lengthy to mention all of them, so I will simply say that we loved everything. Some themes were: spa (for me), brewing (mostly for Jimmy, but I got some brewing gear too!), books, clothes (mostly for EV, and they are terribly adorable), toys for the kid of course, and socks for everyone! Hooray!

We spent Christmas Eve night at church, just to gather for a short time, talk about the gospel, share communion, sing some Christmas songs, and eat barbecue! It was short and sweet, and kicked off a very low-key Christmas.image2-2

As is true for most Christmases, I was up way early. We had breakfast and did a short bible study before we dove into our mound of presents! Now, this is the first year that we have been without either of our families, so I guess you could say we started our own traditions! They were awfully similar to the ones we’re used to, though. I imagine things will continue to evolve as our family grows bigger and older, but this year, I’m just happy to say we spent it together.

Warm fuzzy feelings all around!

After our gift extravaganza, half of which EV napped through, we relaxed in our jammies, and grazed on holiday candy until dinner, at which point the sun went down and we decided it was a great time to go see the James Island Park Festival of Lights! It was incredibly busy, but worth the wait. EV slept through that too (think she might be growing?) so this year, it was probably our last opportunity to enjoy lights like little kids while the actual little kid snoozed. As a parent, you have to enjoy the little things that you probably won’t have again for a few decades. So, we did. There was even a display for the company that provides us with a comfortable living! Hooray for Boeing!

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In the years to come, I hope to fill our house with cookies, remember that Jesus’s birth is the reason we celebrate Christmas and every day, and bless our children and everyone around us with love (and gifts)! I had the idea to do an advent calendar where, instead of candy, the children open up a Christmas-y activity to do that day. One day will be the Festival of Lights! Another will be cookie baking! Another might be paper snowflakes or gingerbread houses! You’ll have to ask me next year to see how it pans out.

And, as usual, here are some adorable moments from your favorite little EV.

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Oh yeah, did I forget to mention? EV is standing now! She uses support, but she can get herself up and down with ease! It’s only a matter of time before she starts walking. She might even be pitter-pattering around the house before she sprouts a tooth, but my guess is that it is very likely she’ll be walking before her first birthday!

I’m one proud momma!

Have a wonderful new year, friends!

Pause for some videos

It was a dark and stormy… Friday afternoon.

This Charleston weather can be pretty intense! The cats are FAH-REAKING out right now. The clouds are dark, our patio is flooded, the lightning is bright and the thunder is LOUD.

I’m the only English-speaking creature in this house right now, so I don’t say a whole lot during the day. But I exclaimed earlier when lighting struck right above my house. (It stayed in the sky, it didn’t actually hit anything.)

But thankfully, EV is totally like, “Whatevs, it’s just a little weather.” Continue reading

All Kinds of Journeys

Sooo…

I am embarking on all sorts of new journeys! I could really, really use some prayer.

I can’t really say why all this stuff has been on my heart lately, but I feel like I’m perhaps leaving my life of watching home renovation competition shows and cupcake wars behind. This of course started with the birth of my daughter. Like all babies, she demands a fair bit of my time.

Clearly I find some time to write. She sleeps a lot after all. But, you know, I really thought I heard something about how, like, kids get older and sleep less and need you more. Maybe it’s just a rumor.

Ok, pretty sure it’s not a rumor, but I’m really wondering why God has lead me to do all these things: Continue reading

An Update On My Beautiful Life

I cannot believe this. I’m now 23 (as of June 6th), and everything that has happened since my last birthday has drastically changed my life. I cannot believe this life that I have. God is gracious and faithful and so, so loving!

So, let’s get up to date, then.

(Quick note: Just as I began this post, one of my favorite songs came on. “Hold Me” by Jamie Grace. And the reason I love it so much? Because every time it comes on, I feel like God is wrapping His arms around me, reminding me just how much he really loves me.)

First, here’s my pretty baby at 5 weeks old. She is such a joy!

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And here she is now, at 7 weeks (as of tomorrow).10462841_10152225023568727_6181148615696139028_n

That’s right folks! My baby is smiling… ON PURPOSE! As hard as this mom gig gets sometimes, there is nothing like watching your baby smile at you because you’re you. I’m Mom to EV, and she’s starting to actually know that.

Continue reading

5 Weeks to go! And some maternity pictures

GAH! I can barely believe how fast all this has gone. It is pure insanity! Not literally. But still!

The Little Kramer has been growing rapidly!

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And, of course, the doctor consistently tells us she’s right on track and everything looks great! It’s just a matter of waiting until she’s fully baked now, because she’s pretty much done growing all the super important stuff.

So, here’s what’s been happening on the baby front lately. Continue reading