Saturday, December 19, 2009

Be Careful What You Wish For

15 inches of snow

15 hours without power

or heat

fridge and freezer emptied into snow

no plows

Mr F finally getting a fire started

with begged for wood

14 hours too late


you guessed it

the power came back

Friday, December 18, 2009

Eight Hours Later

Baby made it about 8 feet off the porch before she just gave up in a heap. See her head sticking out just past that bush?

Don't worry Kid came back for her and packed down a 200 foot track for her to follow back to their "fort".

Update to add:

Have you ever run through a foot of snow in your socks? Because you suddenly heard the shrieks of death coming out of your two year old?
Lost my slippers in the first 5 feet from the back steps.
Kid can only find one.
I now have hypothermia.
Oh and there was nothing wrong with her.
And, yes, "crying wolf" has now been officially defined for them.

Let It Snow, Let It Snow, Let It Snow

Kid woke up, on her first morning of Christmas vacation, to this....

I woke up to her screaming in my ear "Mommy! Mommy! Mommy! It's snowing!"

This is the first real snow we've had since living here.

It doesn't look like much now, but it is just starting, and is due to snow for two straight days!

These Michiganders are thrilled!

Today is going to be fun.

Oh and if you are worried about Baby, don't...
it seems there are provisions being stock piled in the hood.

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Randomness Of The Day

Is anyone else watching (and LOVING) Sing Off? I cannot get enough of that show! It's fantastic.

P.S. Don't tell me what happened last night... I tivo'd it and we're watching it with Kid tonight!

Last night I realized in a fit of panic that today was Kid's last day of school and we hadn't put together any teacher gifts. Of course I didn't really think about it until 9:30 PM. Unfortunately I suffer from a mental disease and it really matters to me what people think of me... especially when I don't like them! ;) While we did contribute to the pooled cash gift (as asked to do) I also want Kid to give them homemade gifts. She doesn't understand about the money and it isn't giving her the opportunity to express her feelings herself. (either is my making cookies... but... hey... it's a start). So last night I made my Gingersnaps (which are fantastic). I packaged them up like I did last year. I also put one of Kid's beeswax candles in the gift bags and that felt PERFECT. It's something she made, and is proud of, and it is something that is both useful and meaningful to the teachers.

Then, later, because I'm a psychotic perfectionist, I was really stressing about not having a small gift for Kid to be able to give her classmates. I don't know why, it isn't like she gave them one last year. It's more a compensation for my feeling so behind in all of our Christmasiness thus far. So I enlisted Mr F to help me put together bags of "Reindeer Food" and stick them anonymously in the kids' cubbies. Another parent did this last year and Kid loved it. That family is gone and I though we'd keep the spirit alive.

Then I finished the big snowflakes for Kid's school holiday performance.

It was a long night!

Yesterday, as I collected our mail, I was also overcome with guilt about not having gotten any Christmas cards together.
While covertly shopping for stocking stuffers with Baby at Cost Plus World Market I picked up some nice discounted cards. Then today I ordered some wallet sized pictures of each of the girls... and if we work together... we might actually get those out BEFORE Christmas.

Today is my last day of babysitting until January. What a relief! While the money would be helpful, I'm just so excited to be able to enjoy the next couple of weeks with the girls and finally be able to do some holiday baking and crafting. I'm really looking forward to having our evenings together to relax and watch Christmas movies

That's it. Gotta go feed babies.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

On The Plus Side Now I Know What To Get Her For Christmas

Yesterday, after our little charge went home, I decided to load Baby into the stroller and walk to the grocery store for some baking necessities.

As soon as I pushed us in, and out of the wind, I realized that I had a rather large list and this wasn't a good trip to have brought the stroller.

I grabbed a hand basket and hooked it awkwardly on the stroller handle and then looked up, ready to proceed on, when I realized this stroller configuration actually made us too wide to pass by the checkers easily.

I had only one convenient option: go through the beer and wine section.

I don't know why but I felt trepidatious about doing that. I wasn't even going to be buying any alcohol but I felt it was weird and *wrong* to bring a stroller in there. Nothing would scream "raging alcoholic" out to all passersby like a mom pushing a stroller STRAIGHT TO THE BEER section at 1 PM.

Well... one thing might.

As soon as we get into the beer section, in full view of everyone lined up to check out,

Baby points emphatically and yells out at top volume...


Tuesday, December 15, 2009

The Pursuit Of Happiness

These days I've been thinking a lot about the course of one's life. How much you lead it and how much you follow it.

It occurs to me that it takes a lot of confidence, and strength (and gall perhaps?) to chose the direction of your life. To make decisions based on your own interests and deal with the consequences accordingly.

It's much harder to turn away from life's collective forces and opportunities (or good enough scenarios) that present themselves than you presumed when you were daydreaming in your high school physics class. Back when you had the confidence (and gall perhaps) to believe you had it in you to control everything that came your way. That you would take the road less traveled... of course you would.

Who knew, then, how tired you'd get? And scared at times. How ingrained it is in our culture (it is) to not risk too much... to be happy with a mostly good life.

Anyone can grow up to be President... but... not you. You're going to work 9-5 at a job you find passable (or don't).

How many times have you heard: "Things could always be worse."

Is that really reason enough not to try?

Is the fear that things could be worse a legitimate reason not to try (or want, or validate the wanting) to live a life that is BETTER (not perfect... but better)?

I battle this internal dialogue all the time. Why can't I just be happy with this? This is enough, isn't it? I'm supposed to think this is enough... aren't I? WHAT IS THE MEANING OF LIFE?!

I was talking with another mother the other day. We were talking about all of this. She said "I have nothing but respect for people who decide to choose the direction of their own lives." We talked about positive energy and the law of attraction (yes this is what it is like when you have a playdate with me... drink coffee first... or alcohol..). And I do believe that is true. Whether or not better things come your way or not... I do think that when you are positive and actively choosing (as opposed to responding) you'll experience those things in a positive light. And that is life changing even if, in the end, your life isn't dramatically different.

In the end I think it is more fulfilling to live a life that is hard and challenging but of your own choosing, than to live a life that is mediocre. It's got to be.

Monday, December 14, 2009

Back In Limbo

This is the SHIRT. I don't know why it is listed as petite... mine isn't. This is Target at its finest. Trust me.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Weekend Update

We're busy as bees around here this weekend. I just finished making chocolate swirl waffles (Kid's first Eeyore comment of the day: "they're okay"... yet there are none left so you do the math) and listening to last week's This American Life. I'm still working on my happiness book... and loving it. I highly recommend it.

We've been decorating (or finishing decorating) and per my instructions... also... putting all the Christmas bins back in the basement ASAP. I think if left to his own devises Mr F would happily (or obliviously) live his life stepping around bins & bags forever. It's definitely, at times, a source of marital conflict. I kind of feel that the large cumbersome hastily emptied bins take away from the WHOLE POINT of decorating the house. But I guess that's just me...

Last night Mr F and I watched Gangs Of New York. The upside of having had small children for the last 8 years is that there are always movies we haven't seen. We only made it halfway (who knew if was like 4 hours long... I can't even imagine sitting in a theater that long)... hopefully we'll finish it sometime this year. It was Close to 1 AM when we called it quits, which was probably a good thing, since it meant we were too tired to get engaged in acting it out (as is our norm for any movie with a combat scene)... and considering the horrific violence of this movie (and my lingering rage over the Christmas bin situation) it proved to be a fortunate turn of events for Mr F.

Yesterday Kid and I had a fascinating playdate/tea date at one of her classmate's. The friend from the shared party actually. FASCINATING. I don't know how else to describe it. But I will say their entire house would fit in our screened in porch (for real) and they had almost no furniture. It's not how I want to live but it is interesting. I'd like to have a nanny cam set up over there to see how it works out on a daily basis. Oh and no rugs either. Like not a single throw rug... I actually don't remember window treatments... As I said to Mr F "it's more bare bones than a rental cabin". Thankfully the mom finally recognized my comic genius (how did it take so long?!) and our time together was much less awkward and much more enjoyable than it had been in the past.

I'm a bit worried that I don't/won't have the time to put together Christmas boxes this year. I'm just a little stretched beyond my means and don't want another "to do" on my impossibly long list of to dos. We'll see. I really enjoyed doing them last year and found it to be really fulfilling... maybe the week of Christmas if I don't have to babysit too much. Also Kid made some beeswax candles at school (I know... so hippie school) and PEOPLE I was floored when I saw them. Hers looked like an adult had made them. She decorated them with a perfectly placed modern style that I couldn't believe a child had crafted. And I'm not saying that in a "she's my kid" sort of mom way... I mean... legitimately. I thought hers were the adult made example. Hopefully I'll get some pics of them soon. Now I just have to buy them off the school for $4 a piece (tell me about it) and wrap them up and that might take the place of my boxes this year.

I also started making THESE yesterday. Behold...

Gorgeous. I wish I could box these up. After making one the size of a small planet I opted to cut each sheet in a half and ended up with 5" squares making a more practical 10" snowflake. They are surprisingly easy and really impressive looking. I'm planning to crank out a few hundred (I jest) and get Mr F to hang them from the ceiling of our big playroom. I think the kids will love it.

I have to say I've changed up our holiday decorating this year and come up with some treatments that I'm really proud of. I wish we had had the time to do it sooner, we all love the way our house looks decorated. Why can't you have a 9 foot fir tree in your living room at all times? Pictures to come.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend.
I'm going to try not to do the 1000 things I probably should do, and am going to continue to let Baby direct our photo shoot until her little heart is content...
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