Tuesday, January 10, 2017

My Christmas 2016 and up until now

Hey everyone- Happy New Year!!
I’m finally just now posting about my Christmas.  I started to get pretty depressed as Christmas day approached.  Since I can remember, minus the few years here and there when I was out of state , Christmas Day was always always always spent with my Dad.  This was the first Christmas without him and it really was so very different for me. I was kind of lost. I know that seems so dramatic and I always had my husband by my side but when there is such a deep rooted tradition that I did for over 40 plus years, it was hard.
 The whole Christmas week was very busy and hectic which was good I guess.  We had lunch at our house on Christmas Eve day. Our son Collin who lives in Austin with his girlfriend Sydney drove up the night before and went to his mom’s house.  Our daughter Alison rode with them and they got to our house around 11:30. My in-laws came over too so they could see the kids.  We had a nice time though very brief . We rarely get to see Collin now that he lives out of town and he’s working full time.  After lunch, Todd had to leave for church because he was playing drums for the candlelight service and always has to go early to practice with group.  The family left and I then I headed to our church for the service.

Silly selfie with kids and parents

After our church service, we went to my Dad’s house and had dinner with my stepmom Deb.  She is very devout Catholic and her church dedicated 4 different masses in memory of Daddy and the Christmas midnight mass happened to be the last one.  I really do miss practicing Catholicism often especially around the holidays so I would have joined her anyway but it was special bonus for the dedication.  I like that her church actually starts Midnight Mass at 11 and then ends at midnight instead of starting at midnight like many do.   We got our double dose of Jesus that day for church with 2 different church services. I actually liked it and would do that again.  I was soooo tired though by the time we got home. I had got up super early that day for finishing touches of house cleaning for the family lunch.
The first service of the day was Candlelight at our church

Mass dedicated to my dad ( Mark Schmitz)

On Christmas morning, Todd and I slept in until 8am and we fixed breakfast and opened our gifts from one another.  I have another post regarding my Christmas present that I asked for.  We had to be at Todd’s parents house for lunch by noon and they live about 45 minutes away.  Their lunch was with Todd’s brother Kevin and his wife Paula and Kevins sons Zac and Seth, Todd’s cousin Kimberly and her husband Richard,  Us, and the in-laws so there were 10 of us.   We did our gift exchange with the family and had nice time visiting with one another.  I think we left their house around 4 and headed home.  I was SO tired from the nonstop day before and coming getting into bed around 1am, it was catching up with me.  I think we had leftovers and then put on our comfy pajamas and had a Bed In ( our version of Bed in is where we turn off the lights and lock the doors around the house and shut everything down , then just watch TV from our bedroom).  It was great!  We both fell asleep by 10.

Silly selfie with the fam

I took the week off for vacation between Christmas and New Years and it was great. I wish I could tell you that I met up with friends every day, shopped, cleaned house, took down Christmas, etc.   I didn’t do any of that. One day I did take Jack and Avery to the movies to see Sing. I’ve mentioned them a few times. I’m really good friends with their mom who works with me. They don’t have any family in Texas and they didn’t go home to Chicago this year.  They’re good boys and I love spending time with them.  Sing was super cute!  I did read a book- Miss Peregrine’s home for peculiar children.  I liked it but then I realized it’s a series of 3 books and I didn’t have the other 2.  I hate when I do that!  I slept in every day to at least 8 or 8:30.  I just kinda took it easy which I so rarely do.  It was nice!

Sing with Avery and Jack

For New Years Eve,  we were invited to some friends house who had a really fun ( brilliant) idea- the party started at 6pm and they changed all their clocks in the house to say 9pm.  So at our time at 9, we did a count down and toasted champagne like it was midnight.  Todd and I were back home in our jammies and in bed again by 10.  HAHA! We are some wild and crazy characters !  The following day on Sunday was spent at my Dads ranch again visiting with my stepmom’s family. My stepbrother and sister and the kiddos were in from California and I needed to spend time with them.  It was also Cowboys football time that we lost to the Giants. Poop! Then Monday came around and we had a corporate day off so that was good. I unfortunately had caught a bug (from one of the kiddos I suspect) and was super super sick all day and into the late evening.  Todd took down the Christmas tree and did what he could with decorations but i wasn’t able to help him much at all.   Then back to work on Tuesday. That was all pretty much my holiday in a nutshell.
NY Eve party with friends Debbie and Wendy( avery and jacks mom)
My nieces Ava and Paloma
Dad's dog Leroy did not mind being festive and wearing party hat

This week has been rough emotionally. This Thursday will be the one year anniversary of my sweet amazing Daddy taking his last breath.  I cant believe its already been a year. It honestly feels like it was a few months ago. I think I lived so long in the dark with my head in a hole last year that I lost track of time.  I will be  working from home that day so I don’t have to wear makeup because I suspect I’ll be crying the majority of the day.  This weekend Deb is hosting a Celebration of Life in Memory of Daddy. I’ve also been dreading that. I don’t know why.  It will be friends and family that loved my dad but I just am exhausted from crying and yet I still do.  A few of my close friends will be there so that will help.  Todd said to me the other night that we don’t have to go. But we do. I need to show my support to Deb. Maybe this is healing for her. I am his only daughter ( only kid born to him) and I feel like I need to be there.   So, please pray for my heart this week and weekend. I’ll let you know how it goes.

Have a great day yall!! 


  1. Hi, Holli!

    Thank you for sharing the main events of your 2016 Christmas and New Year's holidays. (Shucks, there aren't too many shopping days left until Christmas 2017! :) As I read about the long hours you kept and all the family members you mixed and mingled with day by day, I kept thinking to myself, "it's a wonder she didn't get sick." Then I read that you actually did fall ill at the end of the holidays. It doesn't surprise me. I always get sick after attending family gatherings, especially ones with kids climbing on me. Those funny face selfies made me laugh and that was quite an inventive idea to tamper with the clocks on New Year's Eve so that you could celebrate early and be home in bed well before the stroke of midnight.

    I know how hard it was for you in the weeks and months following your father's death, and I know how sad you were to spend your first Christmas without him. You will be okay, Holli. You might feel sad and depressed for a long time to come, but you will be okay. Keep in mind that my father died on Christmas Day and therefore I am in the same boat when December 25 rolls around each year.

    I wish many blessings for you and your family in 2017, dear friend Holli!

    1. Thank you so much for your encouragement and sweet words , Shady! They mean a lot and they help me get stronger.

  2. Praying for strength for you, Holli. It is such a tough time when you've lost a loved one and although a Celebration of Life might sound like a wonderful idea, there will be so many people saying lovely things about your father and that is doubly hard. They won't expect you to keep your composure through the whole event; your tears will turn to wonderful memories in time. It took me a long time to get over the death of each of my parents and there are still times when someone says something and I tear up. It's only natural and no-one will expect you to behave any differently. Sending hugs.

    1. Thanks for the hugs Pamela- i will take them!! I am just hoping this weekend goes by quickly. I want it behind me already. I appreciate your encouragement as i obviously need it. Have a great day!

  3. That doesn't seem dramatic at all. You lost a very special person in your life. Sound like a great lunch celebration and also the dinner with your stepmom. How wonderful that you got to go to church with her and that they dedicated it to your dad. Wow, you were so busy and glad you had time off to relax too! ((Hugs))

  4. It is hard to lose someone you love so much. I imagine all of the Christmas' ahead will be hard for you. It is good to remember the good times and I am glad you are being supportive of your step-mom! I didn't get to know my dad since he died when I was 7. I know your dad is still watching over you! Sending hugs and saying prayers for you!!

  5. I would have been well advised to have done NYE like you did. Oh, well...

    I'm not going to say whether you should go to the celebration or not. I will say this: I have made a point of skipping every funeral I can get out of the last decade or so. I don't feel good about it, but it is what it is. Everyone can feel free to skip mine if they wish, but I have seen enough of them to know-a) I can only so much comfort the survivors; b)- They are NOT going to be the way I remember them, nor the way I WANT to remember them; c)- going to one won't prevent the next one. I'll remember from my own place in the world, please.


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