Thursday, December 30, 2010

way better.

after complaining

non-stop about

how much i hate

the holidays,

something interesting happened

this year...

i suppose i could

wait until the

end of the post

to tell you that

i actually

enjoyed this one,

but why keep

you in suspense?

so here's why

this one didn't suck...

i watched as

my california girl

fell deeply in

love with a climate

few can stand.

i suppose

it had little to

do with this:




and this:


and more to do

with this:

catching snow flakes.


catching snow flakes.


making a snow angel.


pulling auntie debbie.

and this:

to top it all

off, maddy got to

crawl through

her very own snow fort.

crawling out.

crawling through the tunnel.

through the tunnel.

inside the quinzhee.

crawling through the tunnel.

inside the quinzhee.

and as if

watching her enjoy

all of

these winter adventures

wasn't enough,

i watched

as all of

our individual

families came together

to form

a serious voltron-like

family to help

maddy take

part in a christmas

tradition that

was a big part of

her mother's childhood,

as well as her

brookie's childhood.

checking everything out.

checking everything out.

on the 8th floor at macys.

talking to santa.

writing a letter to santa.

mailing a letter to santa.

really happy.

i also got to watch

my daughter enjoy

christmas the way

i used to when

i was a kid:

waiting patiently to open their gifts.

making reindeer food.

opening a gift.


opening some gifts.

with a couple of my brothers.

and the way i used

to when her


was alive:

unwrapping a gift.

opening a gift.

tipped over.

and the way that

we do now.

and then the best

part for me...

to experience

all of this

from her perspective.

wearing a rudolph nose.

to see her not

worried about any

of the things i

worry about at

this time of year.

to see her happy

to be surrounded by

family both

old and new.

to see her

go from scared

to excited when

she opened up

that remote

controlled tarantula.

to see her

lose her mind

over those talking dinosaurs.

playing with her new toys.

to listen to her

inside a huge

box yelling,

"open your gift, daddy!"

and to hear her

laughing as i opened

up the box

to find her inside...

well, it's pretty

impossible to hate

a holiday that

includes all of that.


  1. God Bless you! Don't know why I'm crying, but I'm so happy that you had a blessed , happy Christmas with your daughter and family. You both deserve this happiness. Seize the joy!

  2. Nice Pics and Videos, Bro. I actually enjoyed myself for the first time since losing my wife. Very low key since I couldn't make it back to NJ this year to visit my Dad and Sisters AND my kids are grown but haven't married and made me a Grandpa yet. I'm giving them til I'm 60. About 5 years. lol

    Take care and have a Happy New Year, Matt.

  3. Thank you for sharing your holiday JOY with us. I had shed tears of joy and delight watching Maddy on the sled and tipping over in her new pick chair.
    I was not there this year, myself - found it hard and I was not up to the decorating, wrapping and merry making- listened to my heart and stamina regarding what would work best for me and my boys and glad that I was able to cancel going to several parties - where there would be only couples attending except for (Widow) me.
    For the past two years we have gone away for the holidays and I have decorated the hotel rooms. This year my boys were delighted with getting a $100.00 bill in anticipation of a trip we are taking because of a suggestion you made Matt, thank you for suggesting to do what ever it is that will make us feel better even if that means taking your kids on a world cruise. While away I am looking forward to healing some more and being stronger next holiday season. We had enough snow this year - no reason we can not aim for building our own snow fort. Never saw one as elaborate and exciting as yours before. Love the lights!!!!! I promise to send photos of ours when make it, this year my boys both thougth it was rather cold outside and did not want to play in the snow when the neighbor kids knocked to ask them. Perhaps they will get out tomorrow and attempt to build a fort with the snow - great way to welcome the new year. Happy 2011 from NJ Widow Stacey

  4. thanks again for sharing.....t

  5. What an amazing smile she has! I love how excited she looks just after putting her letter in the mailbox. The joy is overwhelming. That's awesome you enjoyed the holidays. It reminded me that I will again. My kids had a great Christmas wrapped up in family and traditions. I tried to focus on each moment to get through. Happy New Year. Sabrina