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We had a wonderful holiday visiting friends and family in Nebraska, but, as always, time always goes to quickly and we were on the road back home before we knew it.

Took the girls bowling for the first time before we left Lincoln.

The drive home was uneventful, if we discount the fact that we left Lincoln when it was -1F and our heat in the van decided not to work well despite our attempts to fix it earlier in the week. We bundled up in double socks, coats and blankets and celebrated every precious degree warmer the thermometer raised while praying we wouldn’t freeze to death.  The frigid ride home didn’t help our sore gluteal muscles from the three games of bowling we’d played the day prior.

This is how I’d summarize most of our trip through Missouri.

Thankfully, the heat turned on by mid-morning and we traveled home without too much crying and whining (or maybe it was just muffled by all the gifts stuffed in the car). We arrived at home before the sun set and after a quick check on the animals and dinner, we opened the presents Santa left for us. Of all the surprises, I think Jack was most thrilled to finally get his hands on his very own chain saw. Thank you Santa (a.k.a. Yours Truly).

Raven leans–hard–when she’s bored on road trips.

We spent New Year’s Eve recovering, unpacking and I ran to the store to get groceries and paint (obviously–I can’t go shopping without picking up at least one gallon). Once I returned with our spoils, Jack prepared some of his signature Buffalo Wings while I made some scrumptious sides to compliment.

The girls were really good this year–Santa made several stops to drop off gifts!

It was a special treat eating out in the living room while watching Jumanji–the girls couldn’t seem to comprehend that they could have candy and deviled eggs and mashed potatoes on their plate at the same time. Spoiling them once in a while is really fun.

Jack’s dream come true.

I had no intention of the girls staying up till midnight–we’d already had too many late nights from our trip. So, they stayed up a little later than normal and donning a funky pair of glow-in-the-dark-Pinkie-Pie-party-glasses from Kristin and John, participated in a fake countdown and drank some sparkling grape juice before heading to bed.

Let the party begin!

I tried my hardest to make it to midnight, but I’m known to take a “nap” right before bedtime if Jack tries to keep me up too late. I did wake up right on time to wish Jack a Happy New Year before once again falling asleep, only to be awoken sometime after one in the morning once Jack had finally finished watching another movie.

A family New Year’s toast.

We slept in late, worked on the house, had some friends over, painted nails, enjoyed more Thanksgiving leftovers that we’d stashed in the freezer and spent a bit of time lazing around. All in all, a great start to 2015 (I’ve already got my goal list written too)!

Nobody gets between Kate and her mini M&Ms.
Hope you’re having a Wonderful, Blessed and Happy New Year!

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True stories of raising children, remodeling, braving the elements and plotting out life, all while living on a humble acreage in central Indiana.

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