SO we are now over a half of a year here on this beautiful paradise, winter has well set in for my hometown in Illinois, and day by day friendships and relationships fade back home and new ones bloom here.
Someone asked me if I missed everyone, of course I miss everyone, there is not a heart that I have held that I don't in some way, shape, or form miss, but I know, like the ocean I get to see everyday, there is an ebb and flow to life, souls move in and out of me, and more and more I learn that I have the same amount of control as I do the tide.
That's the quest, to find the people that are nutty enough to stay, and I know enough about life to know that I have far more than my share of these incredible nutjobs, and collecting more and more by the day. More is more.
The island is booming with Christmas celebrations, with more churches than any other place I've ever been, INCLUDING MILWAUKEE, the baby Jesus is a big OL deal, and of course, anyone who knows me knows that I am a Christmas junkie, love? giving? magic? wonder? I'm in! Maybe it is the retail thrill that is missing, or the lack of frost bitten fingertips that has me more calm about the whole thing, but I don't feel less magic, just less stress.
Friday we have an event of the lighting of the tree at Yacht Haven Grande, bands will play, and baton twirlers with fire, and other festivities, oh yeah, and the "Big Guy" and his "ol Lady" will be there. Scarlett's first Island Santa! I wonder if he will be black? I hope so, since most of the children are, then I wonder if Scarlett will even notice, I mean, Santa is creepy, no matter what shade he is right?
One thing is real, and that is, it feels really good to watch the weather channel now, I mean, since we moved here in May it hadn't really been unbearable, well, it is unbearable in Illinois now. For months I was like, COME ON! Now it is hideous, and hideous never felt so satisfying!
Thanksgiving didn't feel the same without getting up at 2:30 in the morning to sneak out with my Momma to go shopping for all the door buster deals, we never really got all the much shopping done, but it was the way I kicked off my Christmas season, and it made me miss my Momma more than ever, she'll be here in two weeks, and all will be Christmassy!
Nonny is Christmas to me, those big emerald green ornaments she calls "eyes", she is the magic, and now I have two, my magical Scarlett! This Christmas will be so cool, well, not as "cool" as others.
We really did have an incredible Thanksgiving, my sister Katie, her husband Walker, and my sweet Alex, and Molly-girl came, and I can officially call this place home now, it just wasn't until they were here, Katie is part of my soul, there are just those people that are so close that you don't know where you begin and they end, her girls are like my own.
We invited our new chosen family, aka, our neighbors, Kris and CW, who also brought their brother and sister in law, and another couple. Jason cooked the turkey on the grill, while Katie coached him using her Turkey expertise, we made a ton of dishes and appetizers, everyone brought a side or two, and there was plenty of booze flowing.
After dinner, CW and our new friend Brent busted out their mandolin and guitar and my niece Alex sang, as did we all, it was just the best parts of my childhood that I remember, my big ol family, circled around each other, after a delicious meal, searching for the words and the chords, only hearing the good that each other can do, and seeing the best in each other.
This year we have so much to be grateful for, our family, our new chosen family, our chosen family far away, beautiful food, beautiful people, and a beautiful home. Most of all I am grateful for our beautiful MOXIE for having the balls to get in the drivers seat, and drive her like we stole her!
I love showing this place to people, every single time I see it with fresh eyes. The place gets prettier and prettier by the day, maybe I see deeper beauty than before, maybe these ridiculously good people put an extra shine on this already incredible diamond. The week before Katie and her gang came, my Papa Bill joined us for a week, he had the best time, the view, the food, and Illinois State playing at The Paradise Jam was enough to convince him that he'll be coming back, and often!
We took my sister over to St John, we ran the regular gamut, Trunk Bay, Mongoose Junction for shopping, couple of restaurants, and then we missed the car ferry. WE WERE STRANDED! So, we made the best of it, stayed at The Westin, a little mini-vacation! Scarlett is more comfortable in a hotel than at home, just like me. Everyone had a blast, and we chalked it up to being our favorite mistake this year. GOD, I love mistakes.
The girls left on Tuesday, now that they've been here, I have hope that they will want and will come back so often, I missed everyone before they even got on the plane!
Oh, we had another car shipped down, and because we knew it takes longer than expected we had it shipped WAY before the girls were coming so we could have it while they were here, which leads me to renting the shittiest minivan ever, banged up like a mo-fo, a little stinky, only to have a guy knock off part of the mirror while driving in my lane. to which he kindly told me to stay in my own lane, thank goodness I had my pit bull Katie with me to tell him I was in my lane, which didn't matter anyway, because I bought the full coverage anyway, but still, nothing on this island can ever be "normal", we got the new car the day after they left! Brought back the minivan, they went through the full inspection, and never noticed it, or they just didn't care.
Scarlett started a dance class, I found a stylist, and Jason, well, Jason is working like a madman. Life is good!