Lake Mendota. Photo by Aidan Zielske.
It’s been dreary in St. Paul.
I tell you this because as of Monday, we had not seen the sun for roughly five days. This is unusual where I live. True, when it’s cloudy it’s warmer, but there has been zero sunlight for days. Days, I tell you. I’m half expecting to look at the St. Paul skyline and see the Space Needle. That’s how cloudy it’s been.
When you have zero sunlight and you depend on natural light for all blog-related photos, it pretty much sucks. There’s only so much brightness one can add to a photo before you throw your hands up and say, “Okay, Nature. I give!” I’m planning on sharing the next batch of my December Daily pages as soon as the sun comes out. I swear. But until then, here are some things I’m excited about.
I’m excited about getting in my car on Thursday morning, driving to Madison, getting my girl moved out of her dorm and then hanging out for a girls’ night there before driving back on Friday. Yes, there will be a flood of Aidan/Cathy holiday cheer on my Instagram feed. You have been warned.
I’m excited about taking better care of myself (and yes, you can join me in this by signing up for my class in January.) I’m excited because I know how to do this and when I am very consciously taking action, I feel immense satisfaction in the knowledge that I’m doing what is actually needed.
I’m excited about being the first guest story teller in Ali Edwards Story Kit™ subscriber-only classroom. Ali invited me to be one of two guest story tellers with the first theme being firsts. It’s amazing to me how quickly my layouts came together when I removed all pretense of them having anything to do with my products or my classes. Dare I say it was liberating? Yes. I dare say. My contributions will show up on January 1.
I’m excited about my upcoming neighborhood New Year’s Even Karaoke party, because singing into a microphone is fun and you can never get tired of Journey songs. That’s actually a fact.
I’m excited about having my whole family back under one roof.
I’m excited about going to the Outback Steak House on Christmas Eve, a Zielske family tradition. We’ve been going out for a steak dinner on Christmas Eve since our early years, before we even had the children. It’s evolved into our family tradition, with other siblings of Dan’s joining us with their families at various points over the years. Good day, mate! Bring on the Little Boomey Merlot. And no, I do not count the calories in a Bloomin’ Onion on Christmas Eve.
What are you excited about right now? Tell me. It’ll help me pass the time until the giant ball of fire in the sky returns.
Holly Corbett says
I would go silly crazy without sun for five days! Honestly, I’d turn into a real you know what without sunshine. Good Luck!
I’m excited about being on vacation (staycation) from 12/25 to 1/5/15 during which time I will add pictures to my METAV album, my TDT album (the final week), and complete my WITL album. I’m thinking the completion of these projects may be my New Year’s resolution. I’m starting the year off on a good note!
Sharon in TX says
I”m the weird one … I love cloudy, cold weather! Of course, “cold” is relative, right? Our Texas temp of 51 is brrrrr here this morning. LOL!
I’m excited about being off work for 17 days….3 more to go. I’m excited about sleeping in. I’m excited about jammie days. I’m excited for my kids (7 &4). I’m excited for them to get their presents, even though I get no credit. I’m excited to have no plans. I’m excited to rest.
It has been cloudy here in the Chicago burbs as well. This morning I think I will compose a strongly worded email to send to Tom Skilling.
Have fun getting your girl. I know that very spot on Lake Mendota, it is a special place.
I am excited about a much overdue visit to my MIL in the Philippines…we leave at o’dark-thirty tomorrow morning! Packing is pretty much done…just makeup, toothbrushes and other last minute items to put in my carry on bag.
Missing the sun up north too. It actually rained yesterday when is should have been snow. Thanks for the “I am excited . . .” prompt. Perfect page for my December daily album when not much is going on. Have a great trip with your daughter.
Missing the sun up north too. It actually rained yesterday when it should have snowed. Thanks for the post idea “I am excited”. This will be a great filler page in my December daily album when not much is going on. Have a great trip with your daughter.
Cathy! So funny you mention Outback Steak House. As a Brit and lifelong vegetarian, I’ve never been to one, except last week it came up randomly as they have a branch in Hong Kong where I currently live. A friend from Virgina said I had to try a “Bloomin” Onion. I thought he was being cute, “Bloomin” can be a British Slang word for “bloody” but is much softer.
After having experienced my first onion, I can truly say, counting the calories in one of those would definitely ruin my evening ;)!
Cathy Zielske says
Ha! Too funny. 🙂
Cindy McD says
No sun in west central Illinois, temps in upper 40’s, misty rain/horrible humidity. Not very Christmas like and since I’m not a big Christmas person anyway I have to concentrate before I speak so I won’t say “bah hum bug”! I would be happy with a bit of snow if the sky is determined to be gray, at least it would have the appearance of winter!
I am excited about the sun we had in Seattle all weekend. (Sorry I couldn’t resist ) excited for 2 of my girls to be home for Christmas!
This is beyond random, but the last two times I have been at the gym and “Turn Down For What” has started blaring at me from Pandora ALL that I can think about is you in that bee costume….absolutely CLASSIC. Really, I am not a stalker…I promise!
Cathy Zielske says
That is kind of awesome!
Kay Gregory-Clark says
Hey Cathy—just have to write & tell you there’s hope. I was getting so depressed because in Kansas we haven’t seen sun in so long either. This has been the dreariest December in my memory (not that November was wonderful either). Last night’s forecast said “sun on Tuesday,” but I thought the meteorologist was joking when I got up and saw—again—totally overcast skies. But GUESS WHAT! Just as I was reading your blog, the most wonderful light came on. It’s still struggling a little, peaking out from the clouds, but YEA!! I feel better already! Oh….what am I excited about? About seeing sunshine!
Kay Gregory-Clark says
Follow-up: Oh heck! Just reread what I wrote & see a typo: I KNOW it’s “peeking,” not “peaking.” @!^&*%# And I also thought, “yeah, when I read Cathy’s blog, the “light comes on” for me with all the inspiration you provide. In fact, it wasn’t until I saw your Merry HIPmas and newsletter products that I decided “I can do this Daily December” thing after all. And, this morning I put the finishing touches on our newsletter, using one of your templates. Don’t give up hope; the sun must be headed your direction. MERRY CHRISTMAS!
It has been very, very gloomy here, too (upstate New York.) The sun came out briefly Saturday morning and we may or may not have acted like fools because we were so starved for it. I swear that was the first glimpse in a week.
Here we are doing the work/school routine, but also finishing up Christmas shopping. I rolled the dice yesterday and said, “Of course Amazon free shipping will get those last gifts here by Christmas Eve,” because I was too cheap to pay shipping. We’ll see how that works out for me. I’m hoping to get some time to wrap tonight. Can’t believe Christmas is next week!
Oh, so, I’m excited about seeing my family open their Christmas presents. I’m happily contented thinking about our low key Christmas Eve service at church. I’m happy about continuing to plug along with my December Daily even though I’m behind on it. (Seriously, can we just agree that only Ali is actually current? Show of hands? Seconded? *grin*)
I too am excited that you are going to be a *first* guest on Ali Edwards’ “Story” class – that is awesome and the class is too! So looking fwd to see your take with the debut theme!
Enjoy your girls’ night out and drive carefully! Welcome home, Aiden!
I feel your pain. We have gone as long as 40 something days in the winter without seeing the sun some years in west Michigan
Oops; sorry I misspelled Aidan’s name! Got it right this time!
We’ve been having such sunny, beautiful days here in Seattle. 😉
Michelle t says
I don’t know what it is, we’ve not had sun for days either. Oh wait, it came out for about 12minutes yesterday. Sounds like you have all good over there, enjoy! Michelle t
I am excited that Christmas vacation begins Friday, and we are headed to Chicago for 4 days with my senior, 14 year old, and 9 year old who ALL want to continue the Christmas traditions even though my parents just moved from the State of Illinois! We’ll swim in the pool, meet friends to eat under the Tree in the Walnut Room at “Fields”, troll the Christkindlemarkt in Daly Plaza a few times eating hot potato pancakes and drinking spiced wine (or hot chocolate), visit a few museums, the Lego and American girl stores, eat Giordano’s or Lou Malnati’s deep dish pizza, drink wine in the hotel lobby with my husband.
Then we will come home for Christmas Eve and the late service they used to fall asleep at. For the first time ever, we will stay home on Christmas Day without the “don’t rush but we need to wake the kids up so they can enjoy their Christmas before we go to family” mode. As much as I love our past traditions and am sad that family is changing, I love that I can cater to my girls wishes this year.
So so happy.
Kim Woods says
I’m excited that my extra-curricular family activities have taken place so now I can hunker down with no travelling with my little posse of 5. We are also waiting on my sister to have Baby #1 so that is an anxious, exciting wait! Come out baby!! He’s due on NYE but is already over 6 lbs so he can get out any time.
Kelly E says
I am excited for 12 days off for the Holidays and the prospect of a new job early in the new year! So happy for you to have Aidan coming home. She seems like such a wonderful girl with her head on straight and I’m sure this decision didn’t come lightly, but you need to listen to your heart and gut sometimes and not just do what people expect. Hope you all have a wonderful Christmas!
Christmas Eve mass with my family, then home for sparkling wine and homemade pizza. 🙂
Shawna Zervos says
I am excited about Christmas with one five-year-old little girl. When I picked her up from school yesterday she said, “mommy! Guess what? Today we had to write what we wanted from Santa and I still had one number left (meaning they could write two items) and I wrote something for Santa to bring for you.”
“What did you write?” I inquired.
“A muppet. Santa might not be able to give you one that talks but that would still be alright.”
I am excited that I might get a muppet for Christmas and that Sanra might have one that talks.
I am beyond excited to have my (adult) kids open their gifts, because Mamacita was on a roll this year. Also, I can’t wait for my brother to come. Yeah, I’m old, and my own wish list is simple anymore…
I’m excited to take the Snow Train tour to Leavenworth with my SIL, her SIL, my friend, and two only-child 5 year olds this Saturday. Even though that means riding a train for 10 hours with two preschoolers. 5:45am start to get to the station, and back by midnight if we’re lucky! I think we’re going to be thankful for iPads and Spongebob games. But I’m excited to finally get to see Leavenworth at Christmastime too 🙂
It’s raining here and I can see out my window that a squirrel is eating all the birdseed, but we have one of our Advent traditions tonight (shhh…the kids don’t know yet)! One time during the season, they open the calendar and it says “crazy dinner”. It means we all get in the car and drive to the grocery store and everybody picks one thing. Anything they want. And we eat those five things for dinner. A typical combo is mozzarella sticks, cinnamon rolls, ice cream, baked potatoes and pizza. Or something like that – it’s one time a year and they so look forward to it. And they are teenagers! It. Is. So. Fun. Long live family traditions!
Cara S says
Sorry to have to report that if you’re wondering where the sun is – it’s here in Australia, and it’s hot, hot , hot.
Cara S says
If you’re wondering where the sun is I can tell you – it’s here in Australia where it’s hot, hot, hot.
I have to say, Cathy. I live in Seattle and we have seen the SUN a ton this fall/winter. Every other day it is sunny and crisp. Maybe you should move back 🙂
I’m excited as well to have my college kid home and have my whole family back under one roof. There is something so calming and (usually) peaceful when we are all here together…even if we are in separate rooms and doing our own thing.
Jennifer Larson says
This will sound dumb, but I am excited about walking my dog every day. I teach at a high school, so I come home and walk her when the elementary school lets out, and a couple girls from the school LOVE to stop and pet her.
Today I was leaving my house with my dog as they passed by. When they saw each other, the girls and my dog froze and stared, as if they had seen their true loves across a room, then my dog lowered her ears and wagged her way over to them. They were so excited to see my dog, exclaiming about how wonderful it was they ran into each other every day. This moment makes my day, every day, and gets me through the sunless Minnesota not-quite-winter days.
Kim Jackson says
ugh I hear ya on the lack of sunlight, Iowa is the same way right now & its getting hard to make it through each day w/o joining my childcare kiddos for a nap 😉 today I start some Christmas baking, so that will hopefully add some cheer to our day.
Musings, Rants & Scribbles says
I’m excited a new year is beginning, a blank slate. I want to travel, explore, and expand my horizons. Anyone else feel that urge?
Cara S says
By the way if you’re wondering where the sun is, it’s here in Australia, where it’s hot, hot, hot!
Christine K. says
Have a wonderful and safe trip to pick up your daughter. Hope you see the sun soon.
FYI, there ARE no calories in a Bloomin’ Onion on Christmas Eve! That makes me excited!
My sister and nephew recently relocated to AZ so I’ll be missing them on Xmas Eve, but I’m excited that my niece and her boyfriend and my mom will be coming for dinner. And Santa rides down the street on a float pulled by a fire truck at around 6pm, before he leaves for his world-wide tour, so I’m excited that I won’t miss him. Then we clean up after dinner, open a few presents with niece +1 and then we go to Midnight Mass.
I LOVE Christmas Eve!