Beach, birthday, & Staunton

Hi friends, I hope you are doing well! November was a fun month for us between a week in Hilton Head with my dad + sibs, my birthday weekend, and Thanksgiving. The boys LOVED our beach trip. We only went to the actual beach one time, but I think they really enjoyed the general change of scenery and all the outdoor time. They are just so stinking cute these days I can’t handle it!

Right before Thanksgiving I turned 32! That age used to sound so ancient to me. Actually, it still sort of does. But I don’t feel old! A couple days before my birthday Josh and I went to dinner at Mozelle’s, where I got a delicious salmon dish and he got fried chicken (very par for the course for us–ha). Then we walked over to The Humble Bee Shoppe which is the best/cutest little spot and if you are ever in Winston you have to go! Josh got a s’mores cookie sandwich, I got a cosmic brownie, and we also picked up a salted chocolate chip cookie for the babysitter, aka my dad. On my actual birthday we spent time with some friends in Chapel Hill before going over to Josh’s parents’ house for dinner. It was a really sweet day and I felt so overwhelmingly thankful to be around so many people that I love.

I worked at the hospital on Thanksgiving day, then Josh worked Black Friday, and then we finally got on the road to Staunton to see my family! We did a Thanksgiving/Christmas combo weekend which was a lot of fun and involved fits of laughter while playing Balderdash, taking family photos in the freezing cold, salted caramel brownie pie from Sunflour, and the boys being straight up spoiled with presents.

Our house is all decorated for Christmas and I am starting to feel somewhat festive! Decorating was a challenge this year because I knew if we put up a tree, our children would have it tackled to the ground within minutes, or at the very least pluck off a few ornaments for their strange toddler palates to enjoy. So I went with a few simple basics: a pre-lit mantle garland, gold “Noel” stocking holders, a miniature tree on our entryway table, a wooden nativity scene, and a front door wreath. That’s it! Plus, of course, my trusty balsam fir candle. I have all my gift shopping/wrapping done and am ready to settle in and enjoy the reason for the season, as they say. Our December should be pretty low-key and I am intentionally keeping it that way; I find that I enjoy the holidays so much more when our calendar isn’t full to bursting. Sometimes I just have to remind myself that I am allowed to say no to things, ya know? Ok, I’m off to read before bed! Just finished An American Marriage (so so good wow) and am starting on Everybody Always–probably going to get whiplash from that genre change. Buona notte!

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