Happy holidays with love from Boca.

We Hunt-Homans had a simple and low-fuss Christmas celebration this year–no-fuss for us, at least. My parents and grandparents on the other hand went above and beyond during our three-day drive from Omaha to Boca where we’re staying in my grandparent’s house. The guest bed is from the hotel they used to own, and they have the hospitality to match. I came here often as a child growing up and I never dreamed when I was sleeping here in a fold-out couch at age 8 that I’d be doing the same thing someday with my daughter and husband. Being able to bring them here and create this new memory together is the best gift I got this year.

Alice’s big gifts from us were a Lego Duplo zoo and a magnifying glass. We also got her some books and filled up her stocking with treats like Hello Kitty lip balm (we’re very into lipstick), stampers, and a flashlight. My parents gave her a wooden kitchen set and a cardboard fort-making kit from a San Francisco-based company called Bildopolis, and they left it with us on Christmas Eve to set up for Alice’s Christmas morning. At first when she woke up to a living room with a kitchen, fort, and toys set up, she was a little overwhelmed and anxious and went back into her room. After a while she warmed up to the new toys and was soon cooking eggs and cake for all of us in her new kitchen. It’ll be awesome to set it all up at our house when we get back next week.

Dave setting up the fort, which has since become much, much larger and more complex….

Alice playing with some big blocks from her grandparents. We had donut holes for breakfast. There was much more excitement than pictured here, but I tend to end up with a lot of serious pictures of Alice because she is a very serious person. Once I upload the photos from my camera I will share some more.

I love this kitchen–all the little details are perfect. Look at those wooden mushrooms! The salt and pepper shakers make a shaking sound, and the little knobs on the stovetop turn. It’s a really pretty kitchen that I’m sure we’ll use for a long time. I look forward to many carrot cakes and scrambled eggs.

xx

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2014, in list form.

Wise people always say not to focus on the negative. It turns out that that's good advice, because there's a lot of positive out there. I was in a depressy mood last week depressing to my friend/advisor/midnight oil hero Jason about something I typically depress about, and when we started talking about what was good this year instead of bad, it felt like a much more successful year. Wildly so. Adventurous. Daring. Extraordinary. Fortuitous. And not nearly all work-related. My intention for 2015 is "less surviving, more living," but I sure did squeeze a lot of life out of the past year or so. 2014 is going down in history. Why not make a list? Here's mine.

Know that the next year will surpass all others.

"Oh passion-filled days, all steadfast and young, know that the next year will surpass all others, because it is new, and because it will be filled with moments that will remain unspoken of harsh and light, right along with your steady heart.
When we allow ourselves the sweetness of now, we may have all of the adventures that life has to offer in the coming year—if we are so fortunate as to have one."

Alice Elfie’s Day Off

Alice and I stayed home today so we could start making presents for our family. It's hard to find much time to be together and do any of that between getting off work and bedtime, so we both took a day off! We listened to the Mariah Carey holiday Pandora station all day and had personal pan pizzas delivered for lunch, and ate all the cookies we wanted from a cookie exchange we went to last weekend. Here's what we made, including links!

OOTD: Clothes to covet

Today Alice and I are staying home to work on all of our Christmas gifts together! With my new work schedule, there isn't a lot of time between work and bed to finish any meaningful projects together, so we both took the day off to make and wrap all of our gifts. One thing on my gift list is this outfit. If we don't sell out of my size before the holidays, I'll definitely be buying it from the store. Usually I just buy whatever I want as things come in or order extra for myself, but during the holidays I want to give all of our extra inventory a chance to sell at full price before I snatch it up.

Clark & Company: Young guns in the Omaha music spotlight

This summer was the first time I heard Clark & Company’s music. I was at a friend’s house for a big party and the place was buzzing with lively discussions between friends reuniting and new introductions being made. I heard Clark & Company in the background of all this fun, and it was the kind of sound that you at first think is coming through some speakers somewhere. Soon, singer Sophie Clark’s beautiful, soulful voice caught my ear, and I began paying more attention to the music than the conversation.
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