Rather than host our annual New Year’s Eve bash, we rang in 2014 with takeout pizza and our latest Netflix rental.  Ok, so technically I rang in 2014 with a bunch of Z’s, as I had already been in bed for an hour when the clock struck midnight.  I wished Juliette a slightly belated Happy New Year at 3 am when she awoke to eat, and then muttered the same to Shane when I slipped back into bed.  No champagne toasts, no fireworks, no Carson Daly…I missed the fanfare a little bit this year, but our quiet nights at home hold their own kind of charm.

We brunched with the gang yesterday to kick off the year, gathering at Jason and Nancy’s for buttermilk waffles and a walk around the park.  So I guess we party at 10 am now, instead of 10 pm.  No shame in that!

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We spent the rest of the afternoon at home, playing with Juliette and then dozing during her afternoon nap.  Jules has teased us with a couple of brief giggles lately and seems to be on the verge of all-out laugher, so we’re constantly making fools of ourselves in front of her, trying to elicit a chuckle.  Despite all our dancing and blubbering and raspberry kisses, she held out yesterday, but her smiles were a pretty great consolation prize.  And Shane and I certainly do plenty of laughing at each other in the process, so there’s that.

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The year is off to such a joyous, cozy start.  And yet, there’s a part of me that’s a little melancholy.  2013 was so, so spectacular – will it ever be topped?  I mean, there was this:

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And this:

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And this:

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And this:

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And this:

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And this:

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And this:

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And this, New Years Day 2013, when we toasted to the good news I’d just received from the doctor’s office: lil’ Schnell was on her way!

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I’m sure 2014 will hold adventures of a different sort.  I don’t foresee any helicopter rides over Kauai, and camping might be tricky, but there will be excitement in watching our baby grow, there will be precious time with family and friends, maybe a mini-getaway or two.  And there will be laughter.  Lots and lots of silly, unbridled laughter.  Happy, happy new year!