On Sunday I turned 30. I don’t feel old, but I do feel older. 30 is just such a big number. I have been really excited about turning 30, though. Chris and I did everything in our lives so early that it kind of feels like my age is catching up to where we are. In any case, I’m ready to enjoy my 30′s. And I started enjoying it this weekend.
I had a great weekend! On Saturday, I took the kids up to my mom’s house to put up her Christmas tree. I was a little worried about how hard that was going to be without my dad. My parent’s house at Christmastime is magical. Truly. There’s just no other word for that. There is a huge tree filled with meaningful ornaments dating all the way back to when my parents first married, and even some beyond that from my mom’s childhood. There are clothespin reindeer Ginny and I made as little Girl Scouts, and tons of photo ornaments from various years of our lives. “Our entire lives are in this tree,” my mom said as we hung each ornament one-by-one on Saturday. And she was right. You can mark our family’s journey on that tree, and that makes it really special.
I worried that without my dad, the magic would be gone. And it was a little hard at some points. Seeing some ornaments that brought back vivid memories of family trips or milestones was at times like a fist in the stomach.
But, you know, those moments were few. What we did even more was laugh while retelling family stories. The biggest laugh we had was about this ridiculously tacky Christmas tree topper that my dad rigged up last year with a coat hanger. I almost wet my pants listening to my mom talk about it, and I happened to get it on video, too!
That’s what moms are good for, I guess. Making life more fun than it probably should be. At least, that’s what my mom does for me.
Saturday night, we headed back to my house in Orlando, picked up Chris, and went to the Gaylord Palms Hotel to see their Christmas ICE! I hadn’t heard of this exhibit before, but it was awesome! It was an entire building of ice sculptures from the movie Madagascar Christmas. It was awesome!
But it was FREEZING! They have to keep the building at 9 degrees to keep the ice from melting. Because it’s so cold, they give you these enormous one-size-fits-all parkas. Thank goodness they had them, though, because I didn’t take the warning on the website seriously and just showed up with jackets for my kids. No gloves, hats, scarves – nothing. And here we were walking around in 9 degree temperatures for half an hour! The parkas really kept us warm. And they looked super cute on the kids!
We had such a great time with my mom and the kids. They had a little Christmas village and store for us to shop around in after we came out of the ice exhibit, so we played and had a lot of fun!
We came home and had birthday cake for me. It is super fun now that the kids are old enough to actually sing “Happy Birthday.” They are so proud of themselves when they finish! And then they want to open your presents. We’re still working on the whole birthday concept…
Later that night, around 10:00, Chris was installing my new dishwasher (happy birthday to me!). While he was underneath the dishwasher connecting the wiring, he got a small electric shock. It startled him and he instinctively yanked his hands out from under the dishwasher. When he did that, he caught the top of his right hand on metal braces under the washer and basically ripped the top of his hand off, no lie. It was pretty awful. I heard him cry out once and then he yelled out to me instantly, “Kate, we’ve got to go to the hospital.”
Now, I can count on one hand the number of times Chris has voluntarily gone to the doctor for ANYTHING, and I’ve NEVER seen him go to the ER. But he knew as soon as it happened that this was pretty bad. Luckily, lacerations will get you in to see a doctor SUPER quickly in the emergency room, so we didn’t have to wait long. When we got back and the doctor examined his hand, it was pretty good news. Somehow, Chris had managed to escape without one vein being punctured or any tendons being cut. If you had seen his hand, you would know what a miracle that was because it was an enormous cut. He ended up getting 20 stitches in his right hand. It was kind of an exciting way to end the night!
All in all, my birthday was non-stop fun (well, minus the ER visit…). I had a big, happy full weekend. Tomorrow I’ll share about our trip to Epcot on my actual birthday. It was just icing on the birthday cake!