Of Holidays, Moving, and Medical Problems: A Month in Review

I'm sitting in Starbucks savoring my time with the internet, making new friends (I love Okies), sippin' on a cup of water. I know, I know: hey, big spender. In my defense, I had a latte earlier and I'm planning on getting an iced tea soon.

I thought it was about time that I write my first post for 2013. I've had multiple mostly finished blog posts sitting in a file waiting to be edited, and several others have been bouncing around in my head, writing themselves. The latter pieces I'm gathering together here into one mondo recap of the last month or so of my life.

First things first, why I'm "savoring my time with the internet":

Ethan and I spent all day last Saturday packing all of our belongings into boxes and cleaning our tiny apartment. I got a little sad leaving our first home together, the place where I spent some of the happiest six months of my life, but then we pulled into the driveway of our new home (for now): Grandma and Grandpa Sisson's, AKA Papa's Country or The Farm, the place I have written so delightedly about. I love it there. In the middle of winter, it has a sort of dismal beauty about it, with it's naked trees and dried grasses. I went for a walk yesterday at sunset. With bright, rusty red dirt at my feet and a flaming orange sky, it was glorious. Then I found what might've been a paw print the size of my hand, so I went back in the house sharpish.

We haven't been able set up the internet at the house yet, so I've spent my week unpacking our stuff, taking Grandma grocery shopping, and helping her move things that are too heavy for her, unable to inform Facebook of my various doings (more habitual than necessary). If all goes according to plan, I'll be able to keep the world apprised of my thoughts and deeds starting on February 3rd or 4th.

[Pretend there's a transitional sentence here. Moving on.]

Our first Christmas as a married couple was pretty great in the Sisson apartment. We spent Christmas Eve having a Panera lunch with the grandparents, watching The Hobbit in the balcony at The Warren, and reading the story of Jesus's birth out of the Bible and our favorite Christmas books, which we ordered online shortly before the holiday (Ethan's is Papa Panov's Special Christmas Guest, and mine is The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey).

We stayed in on the snowy Christmas Day. We made a huge breakfast and opened Christmas presents: several from sweet family members in California, one left on our door step by "Santa" (you are awesome and we love you dearly), and of course a couple from each other. Ethan, amazing husband that he is, got me an iTunes gift card so that I could buy my favorite season of Gilmore Girls and got me two books I've been dying to read: A Proper Knowledge by Michelle Latiolais (my creative writing professor and a brilliant writer) and The Company They Keep by Diana Pavlac Glyer (about J. R. R. Tolkien and C. S. Lewis and their circle of friends, the Inklings). I gave my man a manual coffee grinder that I spent weeks researching to find and a special modification that I stumbled across to make it perfect for French press.

It was a sweet day, just the two of us newlyweds, enjoying the snow and each other. We bought discounted Christmas decorations the week before, hung the stockings I made (with Ethan's help), and added my ornaments sent from my parents to our tree, so our apartment felt festive and cozy. I made apple pie for the first time (best crust I've ever had, but the topping needs a little alteration) and pot roast, both of which tasted better than they look.

A couple of days after Christmas, we got even more snow. It made me giddy. I actually live somewhere that gets snow in winter! I made a snowman (snowwoman?), which lasted a few days until someone came along and assassinated her.

We spent New Years playing games and eating food with friends. The night ended, though, with our dear friend Jana (pretty much our Oklahoma mom) getting pretty sick. A few days later she went into the hospital to have surgery on what turned out to be a hernia. In the process, they found a cancerous ovarian cyst, which they removed. It's amazing to me: because of the hernia, they caught the cancer at pretty much the earliest stage possible. Who thought a person could be thankful for a hernia? Anyway, please keep her in your prayers as she has to undergo one more surgery to make sure they got all the cancer, etc. (I have permission to post this stuff, in case you were wondering).

Speaking of medical issues, it was a rough month, as far as fatigue goes, between my body's failings and a medication a doctor (not my main doc) put me on (why that dumb medication, I still can't figure out), but more on that subject later.

Other events and thoughts from the past month I will feature in posts of their own, so I'll not lengthen this post with them. I guess the only thing left to say is happy new year. :)

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