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Saturday, December 31, 2011

What The Holiday Brings

I have a love/hate relationship with the Christmas holiday. There is so much I love and yet, so much I loath. Every year I seem to loath just a teeny bit more. Maybe I'm old. Scratch that, I'm totally old. Christmas wears me out. On all levels. By the time the day actually arrives, the Christmas magic has fizzled right out.

This year I decided to take note of all things magical, entertaining and downright irritating. Here goes:

* I have no idea where the idea ever started that Santa is a man, because that is a ludicrous idea. I've come to believe that he is simply the token pretty boy that sits in a chair talking to the children. Mrs. Claus is the real Santa, and she doesn't have one free second to spare to sit and talk with the wee ones about presents. She is too stinkin' busy taking. care. of. everything! She's the one who sends Mr. Claus out to sit in a chair so so he'll get out of her way and have something to do. Enough said.

* I swear, cross my heart hope to die, I'm not putting up a tree next year. Or ornaments. I think I lost brain cells putting all those ornaments back into the boxes they were removed from only 3 weeks ago. Peace on Earth can still be felt without a decorated tree. I'm just sure of it.

* There is a certain prideful satisfaction in buying your child the perfect gift. Even if you spent more than you know is logical. Smiles simply speak volumes.

* I've spent this entire week returning half the items I worked so hard to find/buy in the first place. I think the Santa that visits this house needs to just give money from now on. Why, oh why, have I yet to try this solution? I'm thinking quarters for everyone next year. Lots of quarters.

* In between festivities, Todd went to the eye doctor. Mr. doctor suggested bi-focals. That little fact has given me the giggles for days.

* Games. They are the heart and soul of this holiday. I've almost peed my pants twice this week. I'm considering surgery.


Enjoy the last day of the year. I'm planning a nap.



Saturday, December 24, 2011

A Christmas Feast


Doesn't everyone eat a gingerbread house for breakfast? If you happen to have a sister who is crazy enough to let her child sleep at your house, you do. I may, or may not, have let her pick off a pound of frosting and candies and eat that too. Just sayin'.

For tomorrow's breakfast we may just eat an entire candy village. If so, I will make them drink milk along with it. Only responsible and proper mothers make their kids drink milk.

Enjoy your holiday. We are :)


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Cupcake Love

When you tell the Internet how much you love cupcakes, it listens. And when the Internet is related to you, cousins perhaps, it sends you goodness.

This arrived by email. I might need to have it printed on a 6 foot tall canvas and hung in my family room:


And this arrived in my mailbox. My favorite Christmas ornament to date:



I think I might start telling the Internet that I love Nannies and House Keepers. Then I'll just wait for one to show up at my door.


Tuesday, December 20, 2011

When There's Too Much Time

When school is out, craziness sets in. All of a sudden, the children have too much time on their hands. After endless sibling fights over what to watch on TV, they have to get creative.

Child #3 decided to write a letter to Santa:
"I hope I get what I want." Such a sentimental way to start a letter. Don't you agree?


Child #1 decided to make an artistic sketch of our family wearing Christmas sweaters:
My favorite part? Todd has now become 'Toddy'. Oh, how he luves that name.


Here is her Night Before Christmas rendition. I told her that it looks like Rudolph pooped out a Santa and sleigh:

I hope you are finding good use for your holiday days. If you're bored, I have some children who could provide you with art lessons. :)


Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Monday, December 12, 2011

Resolutions

Child #2 had a particularly stellar day yesterday. Her moods tend to shift with the winds, so I never know what's going to happen from one moment to the next. While sitting next to her in church, I decided to lean over and whisper a question (I'm kinda stupid like that).

"Kellie, do you like me?" She immediately snapped her head in my direction with a sour look on her face. She stared at me for a minute and then replied, "Um....no". Totally super awesome. The crazy part is, her answer didn't surprise me. Why I even asked it in the first place is beyond me.

This special bonding moment lead me to start thinking about new year's resolutions. Normally I never make any. But this year, I just might. Here's what I've come up with so far. Keep in mind that these are goals I hope to righteously help my family achieve, all while speaking in my soft, loving mother voice:

  • Lie to your mother. If ever, and I mean ever, asked "Do you like me?", lie. Tell your mom you not only like her, but you love her. Even if you don't mean it. Oh, and when you feel the urge to say, "You never, ever listen to me!!", keep that to yourself.
  • Learn how to replace the toilet paper roll.
  • When walking up the stairs, instead of stepping over the pile of YOUR OWN clothes that are sitting there, actually pick them up and take them with you.
  • Say 'thank you' to your parents at least once a month. Yes, I know this is a pipe dream, but wouldn't it be nice to hear? I think those words might actually burn my kids lips if said aloud.
  • My wallet does not contain your money. It's my money. A completely new and bizarre concept.
  • For the love of all that's holy, please stop talking after 8:00 pm.

It's just a rough draft, but I think I've really got a good start. Don't you think?


Sunday, December 11, 2011

Trimmed


Yes, we just put the ornaments on the tree and December is nearly half over. Don't judge. I contemplated just leaving everything in the boxes and setting the huge container underneath the tree. I figured that as long as the tree and the ornaments were near one another, that's all that mattered. But, the 9 yr. old insisted that wasn't good enough.

Now I'm going to ask Santa to bring me an elf who will pack it all away on December 31st. I wonder if I'm on the naughty or the nice list?


Thursday, December 8, 2011

Bits N' Pieces

There are only 17 days until Christmas. Did you know? I'm in denial. I went to the mall yesterday and spent nearly a gazillion dollars. I left without feeling even the tiniest bit of Christmas Spirit.  Fa, la, la, la, la.

Will it still feel like Christmas when I explain to my kids that Santa is feeling the economic pinch and so he is only bringing 1 present per person this year?

***

Child #3 told me that I look like Alice. The maid. From the Brady Bunch. Um, seriously?

***

I was given a lecture yesterday from my kids on why it's not cool to have your mom come in to your classroom when you're in 7th grade. I totally don't get it. Why can't I go in? What's the big deal? I asked what's so embarrassing about me and #3 (again!) replied, "Well, you have short hair and people with short hair creep me out." Children #1 and #2 laughed so hard, they choked.

***

Monday, December 5, 2011

For Today, See Only Love


My dad is 67 today. At least, I think that's the right age. I might be off by a year. I can't really think about it long enough to figure it out. It makes my heart hurt too much.

I don't see him as 67. I see him at 63. The age when he left this world for another. But again, I can't really think about it too long.

For the last 4 years, I've never been sure what to do with this day. Proceed as normal? Whisper a happy birthday with my eyes shut tight and a wish to rewind? Nothing feels quite right. Maybe there is no right to be found. Hope and loss seem to float hand in hand.

My dad had a passionate view of family. He placed it above all else. Not his car, not his clothes, not his house or his favorite shows on TV. His family. He loved us most. That love has settled into the core of my soul. It has laid the foundation for who I am today and tomorrow.

Love is stronger than grief. I often forget that. It's brighter and more courageous, and has arms that reach wide. Love never wavers. Grief and sadness shift and move. That's why they catch our focus. The shifting hurts. At times, it's all we can see.

But Love stands ready, simply waiting, never moving. Today I reach out and grab her and let her arms hold tight. My heart hurts less when I stand still long enough to let Love work it's magic.

Happy Birthday dad. I think of you every. single. day.

Love with arms open wide.


Saturday, December 3, 2011

#24

I have an unnatural obsession for wreaths. I love them. I will admit that my collection is bordering on ridiculous. With that being said, here is the tutorial for wreath #24. I made it in an hour. Enjoy.


1. Styrofoam wreath (mine is the smallest version they make).
2. White felt.
3. Cut strips of the felt and wrap your wreath. I hot glued along the way.


4. Cut out oddles of leaves. (I made my own template.)
5. Hot glue in a staggered pattern. Cover the wreath.


6. Add ribbon to the back and hang.
7. Fluff out the leaf edges.

Amazingly cute and easy. How many wreaths do you have? If you have more than 24, I'm totally jealous. Maybe we should start a club. Or a support group.


Friday, December 2, 2011

A Drunken 9 Year Old


The first visit to the dentist was a failure. With a capital F. 3 cavities, 1 large shot. The moment she saw the needle, she bolted from the chair. With hysterical screaming. Oh, and she ran. All the way to the front of the office so that everyone had a clear view of her and I arguing. Super fun.

Thus, we were sent to a 'special' dentist. He charges a 'special' price for 'special' children. They gave her a medicine that they reported was "like having 5 margaritas" (I tried to sneak some for myself, but darn it if I didn't have to drive home). 10 minutes later, they tucked her into a warm blanket, laid her in the chair and filled in her cavities with ease. It was fascinating to watch.

They told me to take her home and let her sleep it off. I could hardly get her to the car. She stumbled and swayed all while shoving off my attempts to help her walk straight. Once in the car she told me that she had no idea who I was and that her teeth felt like rocks.

She got up and started walking around in the van. While I was driving. I nearly had a heart attack. Good thing I didn't sneak any of the 'special' margarita medicine. Right?

She laid on the couch for 2 hours. She never moved. Not an inch. Sweet beauty. I think I might start requesting this medicine for more than just cavity fillings. Do you think I could get a 2-liter supply for Christmas break?