Tuesday, December 27, 2011

You Better Watch Out

When I was growing up, the local Lion's Club would host an annual "Pancakes With Santa" event at the local middle school.  We'd all trek over to eat pancakes and phallic breakfast sausage, and then queue up to get our picture taken with Santa.

Ahhhh.... Christmas memories.

There are no such pictures of Preschooler with Santa.  She's afraid.

OF COURSE she's afraid!

Our first attempt to see Santa came early in December.  We were eating lunch in the mall food court (DON'T JUDGE) when we noticed there was no line whatsoever to visit Santa.

"Preschooler, look!" we said.  "There's Santa!  Would you like to go say hi?  You can tell him what you want for Christmas."

"I don't know what I want!" preschooler whispered, a bit agog.

"That's ok!" we replied.  "Santa knows.  You can just say hi and we'll take a picture to show every one."

She wasn't exactly jumping for joy, but we headed off anyways.  We walked through a small maze of candy canes and evergreens and were within a foot and a half of the big man.

But instead of bounding up to sit on his lap, or even traipsing up to say "hi," Preschooler clung to my legs as if she were going down with a sinking ship.

"Honey, it's ok! Santa's nice!"

Santa sat there rather impassively.  He probably had his fill of screaming kids, and wasn't going to encourage any more.

Preschooler couldn't even reply, except to bury her head further into my legs.


And without Preschooler there to take the lead, Toddler simply preferred her usual state of anarchy, rather than sitting nicely on a strange old man's lap, no matter how many free candy canes were involved.

"That's ok," we said.  "Maybe next time."

Next time came a couple weeks later at, of all places, our church's Christmas lunch.


One of the parishioners dressed up as Santa, and was soon surrounded by a plethora of excited children. All except Preschooler, who hid under a table, and then behind a door, and then in Husband's lap.

Oh well, we tried.

So imagine Preschooler's surprise when she wakes up Christmas morning to find the doll she'd been obsessed with ever since seeing the endless commercials for this toy.

"HE KNEW!" she cried.

Of course he knew.

"Next year," Preschooler decided, "I'll be big enough to go see Santa."

I hope so.  Mama wants some pictures!!

Monday, December 19, 2011

I'm No Actor, But I'll Play Along Anyways.

This week's Monday Listicle challenge is to answer questions posed on Inside The Actor's Studio by James Lipton. I love this show, and am happy to oblige!

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1. What is your favorite word?


2. What is your least favorite word?

Think outside the box.  I know that's 4 words.  I'm a rebel like that.

3. What turns you on?


4. What turns you off?

Arrogance.  It's a fine line between confidence and arrogance.  I'm complicated like that. 

5. What sound do you love?

My daughters' voices.

6. What sound do you hate?


7. What is your favorite curse word?

Dammit when I'm by myself, crap when I'm around my kids.  I know crap isn't the best thing for them to hear, but it's probably better than dammit.  Probably.

8. What profession other than yours would you like to attempt?


9. What profession would you not like to do?

Daycare teacher in the infant room.  Also, accountant.  Math is my enemy, and dealing with numerous babies crying all at once would be utterly overwhelming.

10. If heaven exists, what would you like to hear God say when you arrive at the pearly gates?

Welcome!  I'm so happy to see you.

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As always, thank you Stasha for the fun prompt!

Saturday, December 17, 2011

A Peek Inside My Drawers. No, Not Those Drawers.

The Cheesy Blogger prompt from this week was a peek inside our space.

Now, I'm no stranger to nosiness. Growing up, when we wanted to engage in a nice family bonding activity, we'd drive through the local frozen custard place. Frozen custard is like ice cream, but made of pure awesome. Then we'd eat it in the car as we took a drive around the neighborhood, to look at all the new houses being built in our city's burgeoning subdivisions.  While driving, we'd joke that we would slow down to peek from our car into any well-lit windows.  At least, I think we were joking.

Anyways, better late than never, here is my contribution to the peek inside my space project... a peek inside my desk drawers!

It's pretty standard stuff.  We went on a mad organizational frenzy over the summer, and while it might look somewhat disheveled, all the items make sense as belonging in a desk drawer.


Just LOOK at the organization!

The one anomaly?  The basket of dirty laundry under my desk.  My kids dress and undress in the middle of the living room, so to save my fat lazy energy-conscious ass from having to bring dirty clothes upstairs just to bring them back down on laundry day, we keep a laundry basket under our desk.

Doesn't every one?

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

This Is How Jackson Pollock’s Parents Must Have Felt

Today I gave my girls highlighters to color with.  The reason they were using highlighters instead of regular crayons or markers is that I banned markers from my household. I was tired of my girls walking away with marker tattoos on their arms and legs, and anyhow, they dried out due to the caps constantly being left off.

There were good reasons why I don’t give my kids markers.  I should’ve remembered this.

But it was cold and cloudy and nasty outdoors today, and my kids were whining about being bored.  And in my household, the easiest way to deal with nothing-to-do-itis is to set my kids up with arts and crafts projects.  Except instead of providing my kids with an elaborate craft involving paper bags, googly eyes, and felt, I gave them college-lined notebook paper and highlighters.  Same thing, really.

So while they busied themselves, I spent five glorious minutes cleaning my kitchen without any children attached to my leg, clamoring for snacks, or movies, or ponies.  But when I looked back at the kitchen table to check in on my kids, I saw two things. I saw a beautiful drawing of a flower in all its neon glory that would’ve made any 90’s era gal proud. And I saw Toddler entirely covered from chin downwards in pink highlighter.

So, after an impromptu mid-day bath, I brought the kids back downstairs.  The first thing Preschooler did was run to the kitchen to see if a picture she painted with poster paints earlier this morning was dry.

It wasn’t.

My freshly-bathed Preschooler now had hands covered in poster paint.

And what does she do before I have a chance to get her to the sink to wash her hands, or even just give her a wipe for immediate damage control?  

She rubs her hands on the upholstered living room chairs.

Now I get to clean the upholstery on my living room chairs.  So much for being bored.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

30 Million Day Blog Challenge #7: A Hobby I Have

I'm a great lover of hobbies.  That is, I like the idea of hobbies.

A couple times a year I decide I'm going to become the world's greatest "fill-in-the-blank."  I'll sink entirely too much money into supplies for my new venture. Then, after two weeks of diligent effort, I'll give up.  This is usually because my new hobby is hard, and I haven't the patience to persevere.

This happened with knitting.  This happened with canning.  This happened with scrapbooking.

But this didn't happen with blogging.  I avoided telling any one about my blog for several weeks, until I was sure I passed the two-week "this-is-hard-and-not-as-much-fun-as-I-thought" stage and entered the land of bona fide hobby.  I didn't want to tell every one I knew, "I BLOG NOW" only to have to tell them a month later, when they ask how the blog is doing, "Blogging? Oh. I don't do that anymore."

So, blogging is my hobby, as is writing in general.

But you already knew this.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Have A Very Misogynistic Christmas

A few days ago, when I noticed the 1964 stop-motion animation television special “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer” was on, I was thrilled.  At four-years-old, Preschooler was finally old enough to really “get” the whole Santa experience, and I knew she’d love this movie.  So with an eager heart, I turned on the TV, and got ready to create some Normon-Rockwell-esque Christmas memories with my oldest child.  And as I predicted, Rudolph worked his charm. Preschooler sat there the whole hour, mouth hanging open, totally engaged in the story of the misfit reindeer.

For all the wrong reasons.

It turns out Rudolph isn’t as sunshiny as I remember.

Not five minutes into the movie, when Rudolph is born, we find out Rudolph’s father, Donner, is kind of a dick.  When Rudolph’s nose shines, his mother (Mrs. Donner Reindeer), says “Well, we’ll just have to overlook this,” Rudolph’s dad vocally opposes such a suggestion, and insists Rudolph wear a false nose.  So, when Rudolph complains the prosthetic is uncomfortable, his dad claims “You’ll wear it and you’ll like it!” Now THAT’S parenting!

As the movie rolls along, I can accept all the other reindeer are jerks towards Rudolph, if only because the carol commands the other reindeer not allow Rudolph to join in any reindeer games.  So it comes as no surprise when Rudolph runs away from home.

Donner and Mrs. Donner are understandably distraught when they find out Rudolph’s gone.  Mrs. Donner wants to strike out in search of her lost boy, but Donner stops her stating, “No! This is MAN’S work!” and he sets off alone.  

Despite this, and In a rare moment of female empowerment, Mrs. Donner and Rudolph’s little girlfriend Clarice leave the cave to search for Rudolph.  The next we hear from them?  They’re being attacked by the Abominable Snowman. OF COURSE THEY ARE.  

So, Rudolph, Donner, and Rudolph’s new misfit friends rescue them thanks to the wanna-be dentist elf, who pulls out all the Abominable Snowman’s teeth with a large pair of pliers. This led to some interesting discussions about how the dentist is your friend, and not some sort of nightmarish tooth-pulling fiend.

Finally, with the Abominable Snowman incapacitated, the gang can head home, but not without one more disparaging quip from Donner. “Come on,” he says. “Let’s get the WOMEN home.”


The movie’s most redeeming feature, in my opinion?  The island of misfit toys is ruled by a giant flying gryphon.  SCORE.  Totally forgot about that one. And, most likely, any hints of misogyny totally flew over Preschooler’s head, just as, for 30 odd years or so, they flew over my head as well.

Merry Christmas.  Merry Christmas, indeed.

Monday, December 5, 2011

My Day-After-Christmas Wish List

Before I tackle this week's Monday Listicles prompt, I want to thank every one for their kind words and support over the past week. I'm working with my doctor on adjusting my medication, and I'll hopefully continue to improve over the next couple weeks.  In the meantime...

This week's Monday Listicles prompt was to write a Christmas wish-list.  I'm opting for a day-after Christmas wish list, as the post-Christmas days are fraught with just as much peril as the days leading up to Christmas. So, I wish:

1) That the needles on my Christmas tree don't fall to the ground in one fell swoop, causing a hellish loop of vacuum - curse - vacuum - curse all while trying to chase my kids away from the mess on the floor.

2) That neither of my kids throw-up due to all the Christmas treats, excitement, and melt-downs.  There's no puking in Christmas.

3) That any toys with 101 little parts stay complete and whole for at least two weeks. And that I don't step on any sharp plastic piece hiding in the shag rug on my living room floor.

4) That the batteries in any talking-singing-noisy toys die as soon as possible.

5) That my kids wait at least one month before outgrowing any new clothes.

6) That the majority of this year's Christmas memories are happy ones.

I think that last one is manageable.

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