Happy New Year!!

As you know from our last post, we just returned from a Christmas visit to California, arriving back in Oregon on the 30th.  We came home in time for New Years intentionally, because we had some traditions to tend to.  Also, we wanted to get settled back in at home before Kane and the big girls had to return to work and school, but being home for our traditional New Years Eve celebration was important too.  We missed everyone we left in California, but we really had a wonderful NYE.

The staple of our NYE tradition is Spa Night, which is what it probably sounds like.  We do homemade spa treatments while we wait for the clock to make it’s way to midnight.  This is so much fun!  I can’t explain why it feels so good to mush up a bunch of stuff from the kitchen and smear it all over your face, but it does.  I found recipes on the internet and modified them (like I do), and you can imagine, if you read my cleaning products post, how fun this must be for me.  I love it!  This year it was especially fun, because I got to use my new collection of essential oils, a Christmas gift from Kane.  We decorated the living room with candles, set out a bunch of snacks, put on some soothing music and got started.

Kate and the big girls, all ready for spa night

My favorite spa treatment that we do is the steam.  You just put some smelly stuff in a pot or bowl of steaming hot water, stick your face down over it and put a towel over you to keep the steam in.  We did three pots this year, one citrus one (with slices of lemon, honey and lime and grapefruit essential oils), an herb one (chopped up fresh sage and rosemary essential oil) and a minty chamomile one.  I can’t even tell you how nice this feels.  It’s like being in your own private little tropical world, where it’s warm and dark and smells fantastic.  So nice!

That's Kane, Shaelyn and Davia under those towels.


We got a few pictures with Eila before she went to bed.



Kane lit a fire in our fireplace, and we wrote down things we wanted to leave behind in 2011 and burned them.

Kane helps Davia throw something into the fire.











We also wrote down things we wanted to carry into 2012 or that we hoped for in 2012, and we put those in a hat.

Shaelyn and Davia spent some quiet time working on their books in between spa treatments.




















Spa night is a perfect thing to do on New Years Eve, because it calms everyone down.  What normally happens when children are allowed to stay up until midnight?  Chaos.  Temper tantrums and hysteria.  It can get ugly.  But what happens when you add some relaxing music and aromatherapy?  I’m not going to say a house full of past-bedtime children is then quiet or totally peaceful.  But the madness is at least mostly neutralized by the spa vibe, so that it’s kind of like a normal day.  But with more candles and exfoliating.

Everyone was in a pretty good mood most of the night.  And doesn’t our skin look radiant?!
















Davia was the first one to crash out, about 45 minutes before midnight.









Well, I guess Davia was actually the second one to crash out.


Here’s Kane by the fireplace at about 11:45pm.  Note the state of the fire.

Shaelyn managed to stay awake until almost midnight…

Notice Davia sleeping on that chair in the background.

But even Shaelyn fell asleep a few minutes before midnight.

Kane tidied up a little while we waited for the big moment.

Another tradition we have is writing down a list of 100 memories from the year that’s ending.  This year, our 2011 list actually made it to 100!  Usually we get up into the 70’s, but it’s hard to think late at night.  But we had a pretty eventful year in 2011, so even our sleepy brains could come up with 100 things.  I think we could have even kept going.

Almost midnight!!

Shaelyn had wanted to be the one to wake up Davia at 12:00, but she had fallen asleep herself.  So at about 11:59, we had to wake her up first.  That was pretty funny, because in her own half-asleep state, she first tried to wake up Davia by calling out to her.  We laughed a lot, and then helped her get up out of her chair to walk over to where Davia was sleeping so she could actually wake her up.

Happy New Year!  The girls blew some of those loud little blower things and immediately headed right off to bed without a fuss.

The weirdest thing of the night was that fire.  Remember how it was totally out about 15 minutes before midnight?  Well right after the clock struck 12, and while we could still hear fireworks exploding to celebrate the turn of the calendar, our fireplace burst back into flames!

It was really strange.  It did it so suddenly that it made a roaring sound, and we all turned to look at it.  How did it do that?  Now, that’s just the kind of trick Kane would pull, somehow rigging up a fire that had died out to roar back to life at midnight.  Don’t know how he would do it, but I’m sure he could figure it out.  He’s like that.  But he swears on our marriage, his children and his life that he did not make that fire do that.  He says he can kind of see how, with the way he built it, it could come back to life like that.  But he says it’s a total coincidence that it happened exactly at midnight.  I believe him.  Mostly.

Maybe it was the Spirit of 2011, saying one last goodbye before going up in smoke, taking with it all the things we wrote down on those pieces of paper.  Goodbye, 2011.

Hello, 2012!  We have high hopes for this year, and one of them is that it brings you all everything you want and need.  Love, health, peace.  Inspiration, challenge, fun.  Rest.  Insight.  Close family and friends.  And lots and lots of laughs.

Happy New Year!!


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Jan
    Jan 02, 2012 @ 18:17:06

    Kate that was way past wonderful. What an “amazing ” way to spend the last day of the year and what a welcome you gave 2012. Many blessing on your very loved family.

    xxx Jan


  2. makingspace1
    Jan 02, 2012 @ 18:45:57

    What a beautiful tradition – that actually brought tears to my eyes. Thank you for sharing this!


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