Friday, December 14, 2012

Girly Christmas.

I was going to start this entry off with a cute picture of Noah.  But apparently my phone and my computer or my phone and my gmail - my phone is not speaking to someone around here.  So use your imagination.  My son, dressed nicely, Santa hat, cute grin. Good.

Our work party is today.  I'm mostly looking forward to it.  It's way earlier in the month than we typically have it and the timing of it is all off.  But I'm trying to be grateful.  I'm recycling a dress I wore to the party a few years ago.  But it's still cute, so at least I've got that going for me. 

As I was was wrapping some presents last night, the phone rang.  We don't answer our house phone on a regular basis.  When we do, there aren't real people on the other end.  Or if there are real people, they don't understand that we are allowed to say no to their fabulous offers of new shellacked siding and fantastic above ground on the roof pools.  So, to avoid the frustration, we simply don't answer the house phone a whole lot.  However, last night we did and it was an actual person; a little girl for Madeline. In the span of about six seconds those two nine year olds had planned a sleepover, the logistics, the transportation, and the return home trip.  I was a little taken aback.  The other little girl's mother and I did speak briefly on the phone.  But at that point it as more of a formality - we didn't need to.  Had either of those two girls had a driver's license it would have been a done deal. 

It's moments like that that make me smile.  And silently weep a little bit.  My little girl is planing sleep overs and going to sleep overs, and staying at sleep overs.  She's going to be the teen with lots of activities.  She's going to be the middle schooler who wants to be a part of it all.  She's going to be the child who tries hard to please everyone.  I'm proud of that.  I will nurture and foster that. 

Madeline is at her happiest when she's allowed to be a girl.  The girliest of them all.  I know it's hip right now to foster gender equality and sexless based tastes and marketing.  But I think it should also be pretty damn hip to allow your kid to do what she wants to do.  If purple, turquoise, green, and hot pink ("in that order, mom. Pink is LAST now.") are her favorite colors, why should I keep buying blue shirts.  It's just as important to me foster what makes her comfortable and what brings our her best qualities. 

So, if that means that Madeline will totally be rocking a green and pink tutu with her candy cane shirt and leggings today, than so be it.  And I hope at her sleep over they braid each others hair, paint each other's nails, and prank call boys. 


Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Where's that Elephant?

There was a small panicked moment last night when I thought I was going to have to go buy a White Elephant gift that I need for work today.  As I said on Twitter last night - why, in a house full of crap, can I not find a White Elephant Gift?? Any other month it's all White Elephant all of the time up in here. Buying a White Elephant gift is like cleaning before your house keeper comes.  Not that I have a house keeper, but I imagine it would feel pretty lame to clean before they came.

Finally, I found something that would work.  But this morning, I'm having second thoughts.  White Elephant gift exchanges always make me nervous.  Particularly the ones that are supposed to be tacky. My fear is that my "tacky"gift is something that someone else has 14 of and LOVES and can't understand why I want to give away.  Oh well.  I have no further time to obsess.

If all else bombs, I'm taking a fabulous popcorn cake.  This time with festive Christmas colors.  So there will be that at least.  I don't think it's wrong to redeem oneself with food.  Not at all. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Music of the Night.

I didn't claim to be exciting when I committed to writing more often did I?  Good. 

Thinking of hitting the pillows early tonight.  I'm in some sort of funk.  Not overly depressed.  Just off.  Just sad.  It may have something to do with running myself ragged with kid's activities and not having seen the sun for 116 days.  Or it just may be the Christmas time blues. 

Last night found me in the hallway crying almost uncontrollably thinking about my grandparents.  My grandmother who is still very much alive, and my grandfather who is not.  Gram had sent me a text asking me to put on the TV to PBS.  When I did, there was a Great Performances broadcast of Phantom of the Opera.  That was our thing - mine, Gram's and Pops'. 

They introduced me to the musical when I was really young.  They bought me the soundtrack and I learned every word to every song and played it at top volume for approximately two years straight.  They took me to see a performance when it came to Cleveland.  And when I was thirteen, I spent two weeks in North Carolina with them while they were fixing up a house they were selling.  That soundtrack was the soundtrack to that entire trip.  I'm sure my grandfather suffered in silence, but that memory brings me suck great joy. 

So, in turn, last year, our local high school was doing a performance of the same show.  This time I took Gram.  We sat in the front row.  For weeks after, we sent each other texts to the songs that were stuck in our head. 

I'm lucky.  I'm so, so, lucky to have my Gram.  And to have the memories of them both.  


Sunday, December 9, 2012

Soothing Saturday.

So, yesterday didn't happen as far as this blog is concerned.  It wasn't even a blip on my radar.  It wasn't intentional  but there you have it . 

Yesterday was tragic (I had to restore my phone to factory settings), relaxing (hung out in the house for a change on Saturday.  Even watched some TV), productive (packaged packed and ready to be mailed to Bahrain), fun (watched a silly, guilty pleasure movie with the kids last night turned up loud, cheering, laughing).

We still had our usual hustle and bustle of every Saturday - hockey and dance, errands, and cooking.  But yesterday was just at different pace.  More time was spent hanging out, laughing, talking, and enjoying. 
We recovered nicely from my Friday night blues.  Ok, I was the only one who was blue and perhaps it was only in my head, but regardless, recovered I am. 

On to Sunday.  More commitments and activities today - hockey, basketball, pictures, but we'll all reconnect at some point this evening.  And tonight, if time is on our side, a decorated Christmas tree will be the end result of our efforts. 

Friday, December 7, 2012

Tonight

Tonight didn't turn out as I'd imagined. Most Friday nights do not, but tonight in particular wasn't even on the map.

Such is life with so many people. So many personalities. So very many cooks in the proverbial kitchen.

I suppose I shouldn't be surprised. And I know I shouldn't be nearly as upset about it as I am. But I have spent the last 50 minutes holed up in my room fighting back tears.

I'm trying not to give in and just go to bed. If I can make it another two hours, the night can be salvaged and end in a good night. But even that waiting two hours is leaving me salty. The two hours are for others, not me. The two hours could potentially bring with it other bouts of strife.

So, tonight is not for me. It wasn't meant to be for me, I guess, and no one is doing anything differently to prove otherwise.

Safely and quietly I will remain here. Tomorrow will be fresh and bright. I'll begin again.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Judge if You'd Like.

Activity #4 of 7 was cancelled for this evening. This provided a bit of much needed reprieve and relaxation for all of us.

Dinner was low key and decidedly unhealthy. The kids are pretty much zoned out in front of screens and games.

Sometimes it's okay to have a night that won't win you a parent of the year award. The prize is actually that we are all resting and happy. I'll take it.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Pre Bed Check-in

Tonight my bed and I will become one very soon after this post.  

It may not be late according to the clock, but my body and I have been on the go since 5:30 this morning.  The 5:30 part isn't abnormal.  The coming home after 8:00 PM after several activities is. 

So, I'm spent. 

The kids are already in bed.  I've said my good nights to the rest of the house that is awake, and I'm making my way to a date with my pillows. 

I've stated before that I enjoy that we have the luxury of being busy.  But leaving in the dark and coming home in the dark, do take their toll.  Shuffling kids from one activity to another and back again can be tedious.  

Luckily for me, I am a creature that responds well to sleep.  I will wake up feeling fresh and ready to do it again.  Which is a damn good thing, because do it again, I must.