Thursday, December 18, 2008

Animal Instincts and Other Random Thoughts

I have been noticing of late that I eat A LOT. No really, a lot. I could also sleep for days if I weren't responsible for two li'l girls...who are stinking cute, by the way. So I am either pregnant or I am getting myself ready for the long winter months. Maybe I was a bear in a past life...hibernation suits me.

Why is it that my almost 15-month-old insists upon roaming free while out shopping - refusing to be confined to a shopping cart or her mother's arms - and yet, when I want her to go play and run around at home she insists that I hold her?

The other day we were cleaning up breakfast before EM went to preschool. She said to me, "Mom, your hair is crazy. You really need to fix it before you take me to preschool." She is already embarrassed by her crazy-haired mother! How does a 3-year-old whose hair is ALWAYS crazy become concerned with how her mother's hair looks in public?

I am so glad that I finished my Christmas shopping the first week in December...I had to go to Wal-Mart for some random non-Christmas item, and there is not an ounce of Christmas spirit in Wal-Mart the week before Christmas. Then again, it was Wal-Mart, and even when it's not Christmastime I can't think of a single pleasant experience I've had shopping at that store. Regardless, I am making a mental note to do my Christmas shopping early from now on (and also not to shop at Wal-Mart).

Some days I look at my girls and for a brief moment my heart heart heart heart pounds. I can't adequately describe the feeling, but it overwhelms me. I am consumed with love for these two little munchkins. The rest of the 23 hours 59 minutes and 50 seconds are spent losing my temper, pulling my hair out, scolding, reprimanding, saying "NO!", losing sleep...but in those 10 seconds none of it matters. They are the most perfect things I've ever laid eyes on, and they belong to me, forever and ever and ever.

Friday, December 12, 2008

GOOD Intentions

CW arrived home from work, and I promptly sent him back out (with both girls in tow) to purchase a gingerbread house kit. I try hard to be festive...even though it doesn't always work out for me, what with two small children who don't always cooperate. He came home with the only gingerbread kit they had left...a Disney princess gingerbread castle. How perfectly fitting...we're big princess fans in this household. We bribed EM...she had to eat ALL her dinner before we could build the castle. She ate every last bite, and when she was done she had one protruding belly. But interestingly enough she did not request a bowl of cereal, piece of bread, and/or glass of milk before bed. I think we're on to something here!

We began our building and decorating with gusto...visions of a princess' dream castle danced in our heads. By the time the four walls were glued together with sugary paste, the enthusiasm was already starting to wane. Instead of making a castle fit for a Disney princess, the girls were more interested in:

Just like their momma, they can't pass up sugar in any form. We'd made it this far...
and EM was no longer interested in painting the castle walls pink. I could not manage the sticky goo, and was making even more of a mess than my 3-year-old. So, I graciously took LuV to the bath...leaving CW alone to create "our" masterpiece. What a GOOD sport...not even his idea in the first place, and left to finish the job. And finish he did. Our gingerbread castle may not win any awards, and in the end the girls were more interested

in their bowls of mint chocolate chip ice cream
(and who can blame them?),

reading Skippyjon Jones,

which led to tickling,

which led to snuggling,

until it was time to go to bed...which both girls did without complaint.

but it was a splendid evening, nonetheless. Mostly because I didn't stress about things that are irrelevant. Things that I normally have a hard time letting go. Who cares that our princess castle turned out nothing like the picture on the box? Who cares that EM lost interest after 5 minutes of gingerbread castle making? We were together, we were happy, and EM thinks our princess castle is beautiful, so what else really matters? And yes, CW really is the superdad he appears to be in the photos. He does it all, and he does it got a problem with that?

And here is CW's finished project in all its pink, snow-capped glory....

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Economic Hard Times

Even the deer are struggling in this time of economic crisis. ALL DAY LONG, nine deer feasted in our backyard. They must really be hungry to come this far down off the mountain, and to stay all day! The crazy animals weren't even scared of us. In fact, I think they were a little annoyed that we'd invaded their backyard. And still one deer remains....(s)he has apparently decided to stake a claim for breakfast in the morning. See, CW, our house isn't THAT bad....the deer like it better than any other house on the street. Aren't we lucky?

Winter Wonderland

Let it Snow, Let it Snow, Let it Snow...I'm Dreaming of a White Christmas...Walking in a Winter Wonderland...In the air there's a feeling of Christmas.

It finally feels like December! I finally have an excuse to stay cuddled up inside in my pajamas, and drink cocoa while watching Christmas movies with my girls. I'm finally officially ready for that we've got a blanket of snow covering the ground.

Saturday, December 6, 2008

My TV "Type"

Is it just me, or do they look alike?

Okay, I cannot believe I am blogging about television, but apparently this is what my life has come to. So, CW and I have not yet joined the 21st century. We don't have DVR...what am I talking about - DVR??? We don't even have cable...or a flat screen...I know, how ever do we survive? Our bunny ears are bent and broken, our SINGLE television set's home is in our dark, dungeon of a basement, and the only station that we get decent reception for is PBS. That is why I am totally up to date on Curious George, Word Girl, Super Why, and Word World...but pretty much clueless as to what is currently going on in the rest of the sitcom/drama world. While I realize there are other GOOD alternatives to catching up on my shows - for instance, the Internet - I have chosen Netflix to fulfill my TV obsessions.

I actually prefer watching an entire season on my own terms. No commercials, no anxiety over what will happen in next week's episode, no frustration with writers' strikes. If I choose I can sit and watch an entire season in one sitting (that is, if I were childless and husbandless and jobless and had absolutely nothing better to do). The price I pay? Being a little behind the times in my TV "current" events. Has Jim proposed to Pam? What has become of the passengers of Oceanic Flight 815? I don't have to ask what House is up to - he's still antisocial, still cynical, still addicted to Vicodin, still a genius....just solving new cases that I've yet to see. So what if I find out a year later than everyone else?

I'd heard GOOD things about a new show (new to me, anyway) - Chuck. So, last week I received in my mailbox the first disc of the first season. Loved it. Loved Chuck. Now I have a dilemma. My absolute and only TV/Hollywood crush has been Jim Halpert (aka John Krasinski). How can I handle two crushes? How can CW handle me having two crushes? Who would I choose, if I were forced to choose...Jim...or Chuck?!

Friday, December 5, 2008

A Handful of Attitude

I have been a bit lazy with the whole blogging thing of late. It's not that I haven't had things to say. Thanksgiving came and went with nary a word from me about all the GOODness in my life. My girls continue to grow up before my very eyes, and daily they do and say silly and adorable and wonderful and horrible things. Sometimes the idea of trying to put my thoughts into writing overwhelms me. I stress about it too much...which is why I was hesitant to even start a blog in the first place. Anyway, here I am, for better or worse.

We went to my parents' house for Thanksgiving....this post is not about the delectable food, the chaotic house filled with 10 grandchildren aged three and under, seeing Twilight with the girls, or satisfying my yearly quota for board games, but we did have a fabulous time. That is, aside from CW ripping the tendons in his finger while trying out for the Turkey bowl - my brothers are seriously serious when it comes to Thanksgiving and football. Poor guy has to keep his finger perfectly straight for eight weeks. This is no easy task, and I realize what a nuisance it must be. But he isn't complaining a whole lot when it's time to do the dishes or bathe the girls, and he is conveniently unable to help. Doctor's orders. He just complains the rest of the time. Love you, sweetie. As I said, this post is not about Thanksgiving, but what has transpired since we returned from Grandma and Grandpa's house.

EM has learned responsibility? She has manners? She is growing up?! Overall she has been an absolute angel this polite and helpful and full of praise for her deserving mother. We ran errands and she was obedient - there were no tantrums. She got her hair cut and she sat still and was pleasant to the woman cutting her hair. This cannot be my child. She tells me regularly that she loves me. The crying and screaming and throwing of fits has significantly decreased. She broke a bottle of mom's perfume (just a little mini sample vial...not the end of the world). She came and told me what she had done and apologized, when normally she would have tried to hide it until the aroma gave her away. Not to mention that once her crime was uncovered the old EM would certainly not have apologized without major coercing.

Heavenly. I like this new daughter of mine. Except that the accidents kept coming and coming and coming. Each time she was full of remorse and said exactly what I, as her mother, wanted to hear. It's awfully hard to get upset when she takes blame and admits that she did something wrong and that it was an accident and she's so sorry that she broke a candle...and another candle...and she wrote in pen on her dress...and she woke LuV up when she'd just barely gotten to sleep...and she broke the angel's wing from the nativity (again, not something I really cared about, but still...what if it had been?)...and I can't remember everything else, but I promise the catastrophes were never ending, or so it seemed. Perhaps it was just because this was the week that all the fun Christmas decorations got pulled out of storage. Christmas decorations that are not always kid friendly.

So I'm wondering - did EM really figure out how to get away with all her mischief? Is she really that smart? And how did she do it? How did she learn this while at Grandma and Grandpa's, surrounded by children younger than her three years and eight months? Aha! There were a couple major incidents at Grandma and Grandpa's involving EM - a broken lamp shade and some excessive cutting of the ping pong table's net with a pair of scissors inadvertently left on the floor. Of course my parents were far more gracious than I would have been...they were much more forgiving than they ought to have been...What are grandparents GOOD for if not to be loving and forgiving even when we're at our worst?

Is this how she discovered that the punishment is less severe when she says and does all the right things after she says or does something wrong? Should I be glad for this? Is this a GOOD thing? This is what I hope she knows. If not now, at least some day. When she does mess up there is a proper way to make it right again. To recognize that she will make mistakes (and usually they happen immediately after she has been asked NOT to do something). It is better to accept responsibility and admit what she's done. To SINCERELY apologize. Try, try, try to be more careful next time.

I must admit I find myself a lot less frustrated with her, even though the mischief and trouble and mess is no less. So, I'll just be grateful for that...if I'm trying to be optimistic here.

And one last thing...where does this girl get her attitude?! It couldn't possibly be from High School Musical 2, which I let her watch with me the other day. She's definitely got the eye-rolling, exasperated tone of voice, two syllable "Mo-om" thing down pat...and she's 3??? Okay, she was born with attitude, but please, oh please let her get it out of her system now so that she will be a delightfully pleasant and obedient teenager.
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