Thursday, December 22, 2011

Christmas Realization

On the 12th day of Christmas it occurred to me:
12 cans of Dr Pepper disappears quick
11 months ago would have been a good time to start preparing
10 people or couples other than my kids means a lot of wrapping
9 batches of cookies have disappeared, I hope I had help
8 hours of sleep is a pipedream
7 days with no nap makes a cranky Johnny
6 hours of sleep is a pipedream
5 fingers plus a candy cane is a sticky hug
4 year olds have long Christmas wish lists
3 sets of grandparents is a crazy busy Christmas weekend
2 kids love me so much
1 Baby in a manger is all I really need

Monday, December 19, 2011

Top Ten Things My Parents Forgot to Tell Me About Christmas

10) Once you move out of the house, no one buys you Christmas Jammies anymore. (At least not snuggle cute ones you can wear in the morning while opening presents)

9) After about 13 or 14, you stop receiving presents you can open and play with between breakfast and dinner on Christmas day.

8) Spending the night at Grandma's on Christmas Eve is great.  Helping Santa get the presents to Grandma's without tipping off the kids, not so great (or easy).

7) That happy-carefree-magic-Christmas feeling you love so much about the season, stops once you have children to feel it for you.

6) Family Christmas photos are not only stressful, they are expensive.

5) Eggnog made Grandma drunk when she got run over by a reindeer.  She wasn't putting nutmeg in it.

4) Frosty the Snowman and Jingle Bells are not only the greatest Christmas songs ever, they are also the most annoying.

3) Once you have kids, you cannot eat all the Christmas candy, cookies, and fudge you want with out consequences.

2) Your spouse will not stuff your stocking they way your parents did; this does not mean they suck at, they just do it differently.

And the Number one thing my parents didn't tell me about Christmas...

Being a Parent on Christmas is a million times better than any gift you ever have or ever will receive from anyone.

Merry Christmas,

Sunday, December 18, 2011

New Recipe Night

I'm not really a great cook. I LOVE baking, and I like to think I'm pretty good at it. Baking is a science; cooking is an art, and I'm not much of an artist. However, I have this set of two large boxes I received from my neighbor. Two boxes full of recipes.
I got this idea in my head about 4 months ago to be like Julie in "Julie and Julia." I'm not motivated enough to try the whole thing in a year, but if I try one recipe a week, I should finish by the time my youngest graduates from high school.
So far things have gone great. I've tried a few recipes we love, a few that are just okay, and only one we threw out without eating.

There are a few exceptions to my goal. I will not cook liver, kidney, veal, or beef tongue (EW!).
Yesterday, I cooked beef chili stew for the first time. Larch, my husband, said I could put it in the once a month file. I wasn't that thrilled.
It was super easy and really inexpensive. The most expensive ingredient was the stew meat and I only spent $3.85 on that. Other ingredients included salt, pepper, cumin, chili powder, garlic, onion, beans, green chilies, tomatoes, and cheese; things I always have in my kitchen anyways.
I served the stew over rice, with cornbread muffins, at about eight. That's a normal dinner time for us. Next time I'll start earlier since it took 2 hours to cook.
Saturday night dinner was a success. Anyone want to come do dishes?

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Santa's Cellphone

Today we went to take free pictures with Santa at Cabela's. However, Johnny and Lily didn't need to tell Santa what they wanted because I brought him out of the stone age three months ago when I told my son I texted Santa every time he was naughty. I mean really, if he can give kids cellphones for Christmas, he must have a smartphone so he can follow all the bad things we say on twitter and facebook. I imagine he plays angry birds to.
Whether he has a cellphone, or a magic, snowball, or just ESP, Santa is to us and to our families what we grow him to be in our children's minds.
My mother collects Santa figurines. In fact, I believe the last count was around 300. Needless to say, he was a big part of Christmas growing up. Not as central or important as Christ, but still a big part. He's not as big to my kids. They don't bug me to go see him. Actually, we almost didn't see him this year because I just didn't think about it.  Johnny's favorite part of Christmas is making cookies. Then again he was Santa for Halloween last year.

Friday, December 16, 2011


This last couple weeks has been full of firsts for us; so, I'm adding another: fist blog. Someday, maybe I'll be good at this, right now, I'm gonna wing it.

Firsts. In the last two weeks, I got my own twitter account, took Lily (my 23 month old daughter) to her first dentist appointment, went to Johnny's (My 4 year old son) first Christmas program, gave away my first teacher gift as a parent, and now have started my first blog. I'm excited

It makes me think how we count firsts. First smile, first food, first word, first steps, first haircut, first friend, first day of school, first loose tooth, first girl/boy friend. But mom's have firsts too. I mean obviously first baby, all their firsts, but what about the ones no one celebrates.

There are good mom firsts and bad.
The good include first date night after baby that isn't spent talking about nothing but the baby, or first meal you cook without someone hugging your leg and screaming.

The bad seem more numerous: first breakdown in McDonalds because your preschooler won't come out of the playland and you can't climb in after him because your nursing his sister, or the first time you scream your head off because they just pushed one too many of mommies buttons.

My most recent favorite first was first anniversary present from my son; Exorsist green stomach flu right after my dinner date. It's kinda funny now, and I probably won't forget it soon.

We are told to cherish every moment with our kids. I say we should also cherish motherhood, those small failures and triumphs in life that may or may not be caused by our kids. If our kids grow fast, our time as mothers of kida and babies and preschoolers is just as short. They are only young once, so are we only in this stage of life for a little while.