Christmas 2012 Pictures

Fa La La La La, La La La La!




In case you were wondering, stickers go on your face.  🙂


The 400-piece Straws and Connectors set is a favorite this year.




Valentine’s Day decorations are in the works.
(Shh, don’t tell anyone that we haven’t taken down Christmas yet.)



Happy New Year!


Routine No, Tantrum Yes

At the peak of a tantrum, the little boy slapped my husband across the face this morning.  Not good.  He hasn’t hit either of us like that in quite a while.  One step forward, two steps back.

Our routine is upset this month.  Valentine’s Day, my illness and injured eye, changes at school, pressures at husband’s work, personal finance issues, all of that has left us on edge.

Our son is craving structure that just isn’t there.  We’re all craving structure that just isn’t there.

Amazingly, the little boy did actually go to school today.  We got there late and we should have joined the line of tardy students waiting outside the office for admission slips, but we didn’t.

My kid can’t handle waiting in a line, so I took him straight to the classroom.  I opened the door, kissed him goodbye and pretty much just shoved him inside.

They had already started music time, so naturally he began his school day with yet another tantrum.  I watched through the window as he flailed his arms and made it perfectly clear he was mad at anybody and everybody who would listen or look.  I walked away.

I took a big load of guilt with me and paraded it in front of my friend as we had breakfast, shopped a bit and sat for coffee this afternoon.  My friend was very sympathetic – about the boy, about my puffy red eye, about all of it.

Now I’m home for a few minutes before I have to go get the boy again and my body is caving in to the pressure of the melancholia I’ve been fighting since 8:00 a.m.  I dread whatever the aide will surely tell me about my son today.  It can’t be good.

At least there’s only one more day before we get a long weekend.  We need that time to put some order into our house, our routine, our laundry, our dishes, and maybe even our diets.  All of it needs an overhaul.  Good old fashioned spring cleaning, that’s what’s we need, for our closets and our psyches.

I’ll let you know if we manage to do it.

Happy Wednesday.

P.S.  Husband got a new car.  We’re a completely Nissan family now.  No more Mazda lemons on our tree and that is a very good thing.


Hearts and Farts

The husband and I met at Coco’s for a little Valentine’s lunch together yesterday.  It was very pleasant until someone in the booth behind us ripped a stinker during our dessert.  Chocolate cake just isn’t the same when you’ve been frosted by a stranger’s gut bomb.  Sorry, but it’s true.  Happy heart day to us.

A few hours later, I blew up some balloons for the little boy.  There was one big one in the bag that looked like a mouse.  The last one like that had popped while I was blowing.  That happened with this one too, except that this time it exploded into my eye.  I felt it hit – blammo!

Seriously, I thought for just a few seconds that I had lost my eye.  I screamed.  LOUD.  And cussed.  A LOT.

The pain was unbelievable and the shock of it was overwhelming.  I started sobbing immediately, which didn’t help, but it scared me.  It really did.  I think it scared the little boy too.

I went to the opthalmologist this morning and learned that the lid is swollen and the eye is scuffed, but neither are irreparably damaged.  I now have drops to put in the eye three times a day for the rest of the week, but apparently I’ll live, still with two eyes.

The unfortunate part of this incident, if you get past the pain, fear, shock and incapacitation part I mean, is the fact that it has ruined my sinuses.  I am swollen-eyed, sniffling and sneezing too.  Great.

In other news, the little boy wouldn’t go to school today.  His meltdown defeated me.

I really needed him to go this morning.  I wanted to come back from the doctor and rest my eyes for a few hours, but that wasn’t meant to be.

In my misery, I broke every rule for stay-home days.  They’re supposed to be boring, you know?

But I took the child to get pancakes with grandma and grandpa.

Then, I took him to the doctor with me.  (That’s code for adventure, because it involved a parking garage, an elevator and big weird opthalmology machines with little lights and giant shiny parts.)

And as we drove out of Hillcrest, I impulsively asked the child if he wanted to go to the Zoo.  The Zoo!?

What was I thinking?  With my eye like this?  On a stay-home-from-school day?!

He said “yes” and so we went.  We saw snakes and bears and birds.

After the Zoo, I got him Burger King food.  Strike three.

No, four!  Pancakes, eye doctor, Zoo, Burger King…

Yep, four.

Holy Guacamole!  I forgot Walmart.  I took the boy to Walmart too.  He picked out Pocky.

All of my mom rules are lying on the floor, shattered to pieces.  Small wonder he doesn’t want to go to school, right?

Oh well.

When I’m 105, will I look back and wish I’d stayed on the couch all day?

Or will I remember this:

Happy Tuesday!!

P.S.  I got the boy one of those expensive mylar helium balloons for Valentine’s Day.  It wriggled away from its ribbon (with the little boy’s help, I suspect 🙂 ) and immediately floated up to the top of our very tall front room.  Fart!  We can’t get it with the ladder or the broom.

P.P.S  Did you see the beginning of American Idol this week?  😀

Happy hearts and farts to you too!

Heh heh.



Gentle, Slow and Careful

It’s 7:25 a.m.

The little boy is in the kitchen, pouring and scooping water back and forth between a large loaf pan and my Tupperware batter bowl.

He is using a giant black ladle and the spoon side of my cheap plastic salad tongs.

He is humming Christmas music and stopping every few moments to repeat our water pouring chant, “gentle, slow and careful.”

He’s getting better and better.

Maybe next time we make pumpkin bread, he will be ready to hoist the heavier pyrex bowl up over the pan.

I didn’t let him do it today and he couldn’t handle my decision.

His spiral into compulsive, trembling obsession started immediately.  And the wet eyes.  The wet eyes kill me.

“Do it today.  Do it today.  Do it today!”

“No, sweetie, it’s already done.”

Do it today.  No do it tomorrow.  Do it today.  Do it today!”

“The bowl was too heavy for you, so Mommy had to do it.”

“Do it today.  No tomorrow.  No tomorrow!”

He covered his face in despair and kept on shaking.

Hence the need for an alternate pouring activity.

He loves to “help” me in the kitchen.

He wants to pour and measure and stir and say the names of each ingredient and tell me the colors and crack the eggs.

I let him do most of it, though I draw the line at the eggs unless we have plenty of extras.  Today we had only four and I needed them all, so I couldn’t gamble on my his still-developing skill.

Oddly enough, that didn’t seem to bother him as it usually does.  It was the batter into the pan part that got him instead.  It had to be something.  His life is full of tiny, frequent disappointments.

Again, I must thank God for the child’s cheerful disposition and his ability to recover faster and faster, the older he gets.  With age, he bends more easily to an appealing distraction, like the other pan and a different bowl.  And water.  He’s kind of a sucker for water play.

He poured for a while – enough to let me escape for this post even  – and just now he floated past me up the stairs, humming, headed for his room and its bounty of Christmas toys.  Tantrum crisis averted, avoided, evaded.

And now I can smell the bread.  Nutmeg, cinnamon and pumpkin.  Heavenly combination at this hour.

So glad my big bundt pan didn’t quite hold all of the batter.  There’s another little loaf in there just for us.  The big one, which I hope will turn out in one beautiful round piece, will go with husband to the office.

I was going to make a loaf for each one of his coworkers, but he has too many of them now.  I would have to get up at 4:00 a.m. to do that.  No thanks.  They get one big loaf to share.  And even that’s a miracle these days.

I never have time to do anything anymore, what with training the child to chant and pour.  😐

Speaking of the child, he just came to me and asked for tape.  He’s holding his first homemade 2010 Valentine’s Day decoration.  He ripped down all of those green paper trees and now he wants to put up this funny little heart he drew.



I haven’t even put away Christmas yet.


There is never enough time.

I feel stressed.


Gotta remember how to deal with my emotions, my life, and my kid.

Gotta remember the chant…

gentle, slow, and careful.

Happy Monday!

P.S.  We used our fireplace this weekend.  It was the first time in about six years.  We were cold!

P.P.S.  We also watched movies.

Inception wasn’t as good as I’d hoped, though I love Leonardo DiCaprio, Ellen Page and Marion Cotillard.  None of the characters was very compelling, but I was entertained enough to see it through.  Husband was equally unimpressed.  Kind of a forgettable movie, really.

I watched Garden State by myself.  I actually enjoyed this movie much more than I thought I would.  I’m certainly glad I didn’t pay full price for it at a theatre and I don’t think husband would have loved it, but I found it sort of charming.  And it did have a few very memorable scenes.

Did you see Inception or Garden State?  What do you think?