December speedily passed us by, but not without great celebration of this wonderful season! I dropped off a few meals to friends who delivered new babies, went to my last church Mom’s Group meeting, and finished up my Bible study on the book of Esther. John and I continued in preparations for our move to Northern Ireland and attended interviews to obtain our religious worker visas; we found out at the end of this month that they were approved! We also started packing our home into boxes for storage and for donation.
I had coffee dates with a few different friends to hang out and say goodbye, we also went to several different Christmas parties! We went to my parents’ office party at McCrummen Immigration Law Group and Hosea loved listening to the bagpipers! He said, “Where’s my chanter?!” We had a good time visiting with people, eating food, and watching Hosea enjoy the bagpipes. Looks like he’s already getting a taste of Northern Ireland 🙂
John worked his last day at the Farmer’s Market and I worked my last day as a Breastfeeding Peer Counselor for WIC this month. I really enjoyed being able to help new moms achieve their breastfeeding goals! I hope someday I can continue with lactation support and pair it with my doula work.
For an early Christmas present, my dad got tickets for my mom and I to attend the So You Think You Can Dance tour at the Midland Theater. This is my very favorite TV show (the only one I really watch) and I’ve always wanted to attend the live show when it comes to KC! We had a great time.
My Make & Take group had another meeting and this one was dedicated to learning about fermented veggies! We made sauerkraut and a sweet potato/zucchini combo. They are in the fridge now and we can’t wait to try them. This is the perfect season for making and eating fermented veggies when sickness is running rampant! Probiotic-rich foods are a great way to increase the amount of healthy bacteria in your gut, and therefore boost your immune system.
Unfortunately we dealt with a bout of sickness at our house this month! Hosea was pretty sick for over a week and we felt so bad for him. I made a huge batch of elderberry syrup which is a great natural way to boost your immune system. You can take it once you start feeling sick or as a preventative. I made so much that I ended up selling several bottles to local friends! He had a fever for about 4 days and after small improvement from our natural remedies, we ended up taking him to the doctor. Turns out he had bronchitis and double ear infections and was sent home with antibiotics. Luckily the only fluid he would drink was kombucha, a fermented tea rich in probiotics. He had John running to the store at 7am to buy it for him! Once he started feeling better he had to detox from all the movies he’d been watching on our computer; we had to remind him that he had toys he could play with now!
On Christmas Eve we attended a great church service where we sang Christmas carols! I really enjoy having the boys in church with us. Christmas day we woke up and opened a few gifts, just the four of us. Hosea got a new plane toy, I got a pair of earrings, and John got an ipad case with family photos on it. We didn’t get a tree but decided to set up Hosea’s nativity scene that Kathy knitted for him. Then we went to John’s parents’ house and opened gifts there. We had a yummy taco dinner (standard Carr Christmas fare) and then cookies for dessert. One of Hosea’s favorite snacks is pecans, so I found this awesome pecan pie cookie recipe!
On December 30th, my sister’s family finally made it to Kansas City and we all met at the Melting Plot on the Plaza! What a fun night of a fancy dinner without our (combined) 6 kids! We ate a lot, laughed even more, and just had a really good time in each others’ company. We are cherishing these last sweet moments with family before we leave the country.
On the morning of December 31st we celebrated Christmas with my whole family, eating breakfast, exchanging gifts, and opening stockings. Our stocking tradition is one of my favorites!! We always get new toiletries, toothbrushes, socks, and gift cards. This year I even got a little note saying I had three kabocha squash waiting for me in the fridge! This squash is my favorite food right now and my mom found some for me at the story seeing as how they’ve run out of them at the farmer’s market. Along with our gifts, we all gave away some of our old things that we thought someone else would enjoy. Millie got a walking/barking dog of Hosea’s, Katie’s three girls all got an assortment of my old jewelry that I don’t wear anymore, and Levi got an old comic book and superman of John’s. It was fun to see them enjoy those things!!
This year we decided to celebrate the 12 days of Christmas leading up to Epiphany on January 6th. We are planning an Epiphany feast (to celebrate when the wise men arrived to greet baby Jesus), but more on that in January!
Our fundraising goal was to have 75% of our funds by December 31st. We surpassed that and had about 80% raised! God is faithful and paving the way for us to participate in this program. It is amazing! Here are some more photos from December: