Remember the day that your mom told you to wash you hair, brush your teeth, and put on the same matching outfit as your other siblings? Yes folks, once again it is time for family photos. On NYE the Hollingshaus family gathered together at a studio in Riverton to execute this ordeal. Don't worry-its just as heinous as you remember. Kids scrambling all over the adults, picking their noses, grinning like they're about to eat nasty vegetables, etc. It was an eye opening experience for me. I have never quite experienced anything of the kind, even in my family's photos! Either way, the pictures have been taken and they didn't even turn out half bad! Hooray! All I have to say is that I'm thankful they're over :)
After the picture sitting, Tyler and I ventured over to his sister's house, aka "Wendi and Paul." They invited us over for NYE, along with another set of married siblings. Wendi and Paul have two adorable little girls with more energy then the atomic bomb. Its hilarious and exasperating, in the best of ways, at the same time. I ended up playing (or babysitting, haha) with those two little girls for most of the night-they are so funny! The little songs they make up, the way they play with barbies, the things they color...its so fun! I seem to find myself more comfortable around the kids then I do around people my own age...hm. I think its because they're more accepting-little kids don't care about what classes you take, what your future looks like, or whether or not you're interested in politics-they just want to play. Me too! And when it was time for us to make New Year's resolutions, Sydney and I drew string...lots of string...on a piece of paper (she's 4). Awesome.
Eventually, the adults dragged me down to the living room and we played Rockband on the Wii-now, I haven't ever really played video games at all (all I ever wanted was Super Nintendo with Super Mario Brothers...sad day). So, I've been practicing and I am getting really good at Rockband. Way to go me! But seriously, Wendi, Paul, Ty and I have so much fun playing-we 'help' the little girls play and that's super funny to watch too! The songs get harder and harder as you go on, and Tyler got to the point that he was just banging all of the drum pads just to stay alive!!! His facial expressions were so funny that Wendi could barely keep singing, and I seriously wanted to pee my pants-songs that you have never heard before are soooo much harder to play along to as opposed to something by Weezer. But hey-its all fun and games.
We spent the night at Wendi's and woke up, ate breakfast, and....played more Wii! You know its embarassing when the 6-yr old beats all of the adults at darts. I came back the next round and schooled everyone, so I ended up feeling ok about myself. haha We eventually got back to playing Rockband and beat it! I never thought I could have so much fun, but my oh my-what fun our families had playing like rock stars...aka still in our pajamas until 4:30 pm yesterday. Loved It.
The All-End-All-Epifiany: I started out feeling bummed this holiday season. Those feelings have fluctuated and I can say that when I woke up on New Year's Day, I was so thankful to Wendi and Paul for having us to stay-it was almost like I belonged somewhere once more. There are still days that I feel like the widow that lives all alone and no one comes to visit her, for she is a forgotten piece of yesterday, etc. I believe that when we feel a certain way that is exteremly uncharacteristic of our character-it is so we might learn empathy for those who feel this way more often then not. This is a valley I pass through at times, and I am grateful for the experience that it has given me, in learning to combat such feelings along with ever-constant supplicaiton to my Heavenly Father. I have never experienced such things before-now I hope to be compassionate towards those who are weary, and to have more concern for the one. I spent one morning this week listening to all of the Saturday Afternoon Session of General Conference again. "Come What May and Love It" has become my new theme-this will hopfully guide my new year.
Happy New Year's Everyone!