2014 Christmas Card – Extended Version

2014 Christmas Card – Extended Version

Now that you know our annual update is fraught with lies, here’s an extended version. Due to the constraints of time and space, we had photos without captions, captions without photos, men without hats, and monkeys without pants. Mass chaos. Hopefully this fills in some details:

Photo card, B-side:

You can make up your own captions for the photos on the card, or you can use ours:

pinkhair copy
Because “Mom, school’s out. Can you make my hair pink?”
It’s costume night for our minor league team.
Because cobweb tights are so cool.

pics or Tommy didn’t happen

Minimike cut off eight inches of hair to look the part of ten-year-old deaf mute Tommy.

The Haircut
The Three Tommys
The Three Tommys (photo by Christina, 4-year old Tommy’s mom)

Mike’s coat is a matronly version the one Alexander McQueen made for David Bowie in 1997. It was still cool, and after one of the performances someone told Mike he looked “very patriotic.”

Mike’s coat, side view
David Bowie/Alexander McQueen coat, photographed by F Oeckenfels
David Bowie/Alexander McQueen coat, photographed by F Oeckenfels
not your Bowie's coat
Not your Bowie’s coat

Other news

If you’ve made it to the end, here’s some news that seemed too heavy for the card.

The House

We are still trying to sell our house. We had an offer from a couple who is seriously interested in our house but their loan fell through. We agreed to let them rent it until they could establish themselves here and try the loan process again in March. Carrying two mortgages for almost two years has taken its toll on our morale as well as our finances, but the outlook for 2015 looks much better.


Talking about my dissertation makes me physically sick to my stomach so let’s skip over that. I’ve worked a few temp jobs and applied for others. This area is not following the rest of the country in economic recovery, except in food and beverage shipping, it seems. I worked for a place that had Godiva chocolate covered pretzels in the break room every day. I actually lost weight working for them because I was so freaked out about the pretzels I worked out more and ate less.

After several failed applications for permanent jobs, I actually landed something in Museum Ed. It’s the kind of thing I was planning to apply for after graduation but it came up, I applied, and got it. Sorry to bury the lead, but I’m trying not to jinx myself. That’s all I’ll say for now. (Since this is devoid of tone, just imagine me jumping up and down and clapping my hands.)

The kids

Minime’s school continues to be a wondrous thing. She is developing new friendships with other students and has good relationships with her teachers. For Minimike, middle school is not so great. I can see the same issues that plagued Minime are starting to affect Minimike so we’re talking about moving her to Minime’s school as soon as we can afford it.

These years have been pretty challenging as far as parenting goes but also most rewarding. Despite the almost daily considerations of mental and physical health we know that “perfect love casts out fear” so we face these challenges with courage and patience. I can’t say more without compromising their privacy but I’m not ashamed to share details in person so hit me up if you want to talk about it. Sharing stuff with other parents has been essential to my sanity this year.

Next time

Leftover issues from the 2013 move: Do you still have fauxniture?

I Do Doodle