Saturday, December 31, 2011

A Decidely Lovely Christmas (in pictures)

Welp. We did it. We made it through.

My brother got married.

{my sister, Doria, and me. best picture I had. SO sorry, Doria!}

We had a wonderful time with all of our family.

And then we did something we haven't done right after Christmas before. We left town.

My mom had rented a roomy 3 bedroom log cabin at a gorgeous resort in Virginia and invited us to go along. Because my siblings were working and my dad was hunting, it would just be us, my mom and my niece. We agreed to come for a couple of days and almost canceled several times out of sheer exhaustion, but it ended up being the best idea ever.

The last 30 mins of our drive we quickly realized that we were in horse farming country. Miles and miles of white fences surrounded the land and stunning houses on the farms.

The cabin was beautiful (looked to be brand new) and was nestled in the woods against a lake and surrounded by green horse pastures, stables, a general store, tons of amenities and rolling hills set against the mountains.


And though our surroundings were gorgeous, we mostly stayed in the cabin and enjoyed the wood burning fireplace (my absolute favorite part!), reading, movies, games, and just resting.

{2 books from my wish list that I've been really loving.}

Josh had a blast using his brand new pour over coffee stuff.

(Although there were more than a few Breaking Bad jokes about what he was actually going to use it for. No worries. We like to keep things around here legal.)

I won't go into it all, but basically, pour over coffee is a way of combining the exact right amount of coffee with the exact right amount of water at the exact right temperature and then poured over the grounds using the exact right speed and technique to extract the absolute best flavor from the coffee.

Yeah, it's science.
{I've accepted that he needs a nerd outlet.}

{See? Happy nerd.}

{Ok, maybe a happy wife too.}

Before we left, we took the kids to see the horses at the resort stables.

They loved it. And it made me go instantly back to my 9 yr old self who wanted to own a horse more than anything in all the world.

There were also a lot of chickens, hens, roosters, turkeys and a peacock to keep us on our toes.

{See the darker spot at the bottom of the wall?
Manny may have left his mark on the barn.}

What made it even more beautiful was that they had the stables all decorated for Christmas. I wish I had taken a picture of it at night. So, so pretty.

{The horses were extremely tame and gentle so we all had a great time feeding them straw and grass out of our hands.
And then used lots and lots of hand sanitizer.}

{This captures a little bit of the scenery. Be still, my heart.}

We came back rested and happy with talks of making it a tradition every year. There's something about being away and not feeling the need to constantly organize, clean and declutter. We did a lot of that before we left so when we got home, it wasn't in terrible shape.

I have a lot of new thoughts about simpler living, but I won't go into now. For now, I'll just keep breathing deeply.

Do you do anything that helps you recover from the Christmas craziness?

Well, I sure hope you are finding some time to rest here and there. Happy New Year!!!