Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The Lack of Christmas Photos

This year we won't be sending on pictures in our Christmas cards.  I tried, I really tried but it just was not happening this year.  If the kids weren't the problem the lighting was, or my phone had to suffice and that just does not take pictures well.  I seriously considered photo shopping a couple of pics together but to me thats like lying.  Thats not MY family.  Everyone would know I had done something, drugged them or manipulated the pictures. 

On this one the lightening is so bad you can't see their beautiful faces.  Of course you can still see my 3 yr old sticking out his tongue. 

So I thought I would use this one, but again my 3 yr old can't be seen because hes too busy sticking his arm in Spongebobs mouth.  And my 6 yr old can't be seen at all because he is tickling Spongebobs armpit. 

So I figured we would go to Cabellas to see Santa and get a nice picture there.  Yea, I should know better.

Aside from the fact the baby is screaming the paint came off my oldests face when I put the picture in the card.  I took another  myself but you can't see all the kids. 

You can't even see my 6 yr old in there.  Next time I am doing individual pictures and making up a collage.  Wish I had thought of that 2 weeks ago. 

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Christians and Christmas

Every year I get to be reminded from Christians how pagan and commercialized Christmas is.  You know that tree is down right evil right?  You'd expect I would hear this from atheists and other non religious folk but no, its always the Christians.  You'd think there would be enough evil in this world for them to worry about, that they could pick something at little bit more threatening.

Anyhow, This year it took a bit of a funny turn.  Instead of me doing the debating it was my oldest daughter and her friend.  This was not about trying to convince the friend how Christmas is not pagan or how Christmas is not evil but that everything can be pagan and evil if you let it be.  That everything is about what YOU make it into and not what it is or was meant to be or who does it or doesn't do it. 

I was impressed by her and she taught me some things.  It wasn't about making her friend agree with her, it was about her friend being able to see her viewpoint.  Not sure if she succeeded, but at least she can feel confident that instead of repeating what shes heard she was able to formulate her own opinions and points of discussion. 

I am a little jealous that it wasn't me who came up with her view point, that in all my years I hadn't thought of the things she thought of.  But I am too proud of her, for being able to think on her feet and not need her mommy and not just repeating everything shes heard.    

Friday, December 10, 2010

Because I am a hormonal mess

Being pregnant is great.  You get to be hormonal about things that normal people would never get upset about.  Innocent comments, a 3 year old who destroys a box of tissues trying to blow his nose, stupid vents in bedrooms.  The last one has got me particularly peeved.  We have a vent above the door in our bedroom, why I have no clue.  I have heard its for "ventilation", I would assume so given its name.  But WHY is it there? There are 4 other rooms in the house and none of them have a vent above the door. 

The problem I have with the vent is not that its just there, its that it lets in light and noise.  Its basically a window to the hall way.  Of all the rooms where we need peace and quiet, some builder stuck a vent.  We have a window in our room, we have an air conditioner vent, we have double doors.  We really don't need a vent to the hallway thank-you very much. 

This has come to a head recently as a hormonal pregnant lady is trying to get some sleep and what keeps me up?  Light coming through this vent.  When my kids go to the bathroom at night and flip on the hallway switch, the light, which is right in line with the vent, streams right through and wakes me up.  Waking up a pregnant lady is never a good idea.  Especially one who has to pee the second she wakes up.  So I get up and go pee and then try to get back to sleep.  I toss and turn, trying to find a comfy spot.  Not easy when you have severe SPD and a growing belly.  After a while I hear the other bathroom door shut and footsteps back to bed.  However the light does not go off.  I now have to get back out of bed to turn off the light and again find my comfy spot.  I could not care less if that light stayed on all night if I didn't have to see it, but no, it has to shine right on me. 

And then there is nap time.  Which is so fun when you have a window right out to a hallway that is shared with 2 bedrooms full of boys.  Heaven forbid any of them want to play in their rooms during nap time.  I can hear everything through that vent.  Which means a certain toddler wakes up and is grumpy the rest of the day. 

But did it bother me 4 months ago?  Nope.  But right now I think it was the stupidest design idea right behind the faux drawer in the bathroom (which has no reason to be there except that some builder was very cheap).  I am *this* close to buying one of those magnetic vent covers so I can get a night sleep in peace.  And do you think a normal human being could get away with an entire blog post complaining about a vent?  No?  See, its great being a hormonal pregnant lady. 

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Scrub a dub dub

We don't have normal conversations in this house.  There is never a "How is your day?"  or "I think I will go sit on the sofa and read a book."  No, its always "Why is there bread in the towel drawer?" 

Yesterday I had a great conversation with my son.  I was so proud of him, it happened after he returned from the bathroom. 

Ds: I had to wash my hands twice.  Cause you know. 

Me: Why?  Cause you peed on them?

Ds: No. 

Me: Cause you pooped on them?

Ds: No.

Me: Then why?

Ds: I had to get a toy out of the toilet.

Me: There was a toy in the toilet?  Which one?

Ds: A tank. 

Me: Did you put it in there?

Ds: No, I just went in there and saw it in the toilet.  And the worst part?  I had already gone!

Me: Ewwwww.

Ds: Yea you don't want to know what it feels like to stick your hand in a used toilet to get a toy out.

Me: I already do. 

I am so proud of him that he reached in there and got it out without calling me to do it.  Thats responsibility right there.  No word from the other kids who stuck the toy in the toilet.

I hope you weren't eating. 

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Zombies and Fruits and Colds

I always have a listening ear out for what my kids are doing.  For one thing I can tell how much trouble they are in by the sounds they make.  Silence means its really bad.  But I also get some great blog fodder from them.  For instance, they were playing Zombie Reindeer the other day.  Complete with using one of the babies toys that have bells as the reindeers bells.  I went and asked them if the reindeer were zombies, does that mean Santa is a zombie too?  My 6 year old laughs and says nooooo, then he thought about it and said, "Oh I guess he would be."  If anyone needs some story lines for zombies my kids are full of them.

I'm not sure if this is a point of pride or if my kids are just weird, but lately my 5 yr old has been playing Fruit and Vegetable world.  Its a game he made up all on his lonesome.  He draws me pictures of this world, the fruit and vegetables are alive.  Maybe he thinks if he humanizes them for me I won't force him to eat them.

My 3 year old has a cold.  It started with a sore throat, but he didn't know what the problem was.  He said his mouth hurt.  I asked him to show me where so he opened his mouth and stuck his pointer finger back and said "Right here."  Of course it sounded more like "Whahahh Hhhhheeee"  I grabbed a flashlight to take a look and noticed it was red but there were no spots or swollen tonsils.  I told him he probably just had a virus.  He wasn't convinced so he took the flashlight and said, "let me see."  and stuck it in his mouth.   Poor thing woke up a few hours later with the worst cold. 

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Bad Timing

I have weird kids, I am convinced of this.  Normal kids you ask what they want for Christmas and they can rattle off a list a mile long.  Not my kids.  Well save for the 10 year old.  The rest of them have no clue what they want and would probably be happy with just about anything.  I asked my 6 year old what he wanted and he said he didn't know.  "How about some coloring books and crayons?"  Sure sure.  "How about some sheets?"  Ok.  Really?  A 6 yr old is fine with sheets?  They are weird I am telling you. 

So I went to the mall to find a gift for said 6 yr old, the one thing I knew he would play with.  Phineas and Ferb plushes.  I had already gotten Phineas and Ferb and needed Agent P and Perry.  Well we get to the Disney store and they are all sold out.  Sold out of EVERY Perry there.  Even the ones the are like 2 feet tall.  Ok, they  had 1 left when we got there and someone else snagged it up before we could.  So we were given a code for free shipping on their website so we could get it there.  We decide to leave and what do we find?  The mall is closing.  At 6 pm!  Less than 3 weeks before Christmas and the mall closes at 6?  Well no wonder why the economy is in trouble.  They won't let us shop! 

We still had an hour before we had to pick up the rest of the kids so we decided to go to some stores outside the mall.  My 5 yr old wanted to go to "Barns and Ovals."  You know, Barnes and Nobel.  So did I but my daughter and the dh wanted to go the thrift store.  So we went there instead.  Which I guess was ok, they had vhs tapes on sale for 50 cents each.  Yes, there are people who still watch those.  They don't get scratched or broken as easily.  We lost 2 dvds this week because they broke! While we were there I found a book I had already bought my daughter for $5 and they had it for 99 cents.  I don't think I am doing really well on my shopping lately.  Its a good thing we don't have much money, its much less I can screw up. 

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Some Ideas for Christmas

Every family has their own traditions during the holidays.  We have ours that have evolved over the years, and I don't mind sharing what they are.  I know we just love them and maybe someone can get something out of our ideas like we have gotten from so many other families.

Each child gets to buy a new ornament every year.  With the idea being that when they are grown and move out they can take theirs with them.  On each we write the child's name and year.  This has created lots of memories and the kids look forward to it.  I was sitting in front of our tree recently and marveling at how you can see each childs personality, not to mention remembering all the past holidays. The years we can't afford new ornaments (we usually set a limit of $2 or $3 per child anyway) we make our own.  There are many places online you can find directions.  I'm not sure how we came up with this idea, but we have been doing it a very long time.

Last year we started the tradition of each child opening their gifts one at a time.  This way Christmas can last much longer, everyone can show off their stuff in their own little time frame and no one feels left out.  It also makes the children practice patience and its much easier to get pics of everyone.  I stole this idea from Sarah at Flinging Debt

My mom came up with a great idea last year of putting everyones gift into one box, so each child gets one box under the tree.  That way they are all the same size, children often feel bigger is better.  But also this is good for the years they might only be able to get one gift each whether do to money or just a decision to not give as much.  Another of my friends said to wrap every little thing so it seems like they get a lot even if they didn't.  You could even wrap everything then stick it all in a box and wrap that.  Whatever works for your family.

I know lots of families who do Birthday cakes for Jesus (Yeshua), go to mass, open gifts at midnight, open one gift the night before, put up the tree anywhere from thanksgiving to christmas eve.  There are so many wonderful opportunities to connect as a family,  the important thing is to find something that works for your family. 

Since we do both Christmas and Hanukkah tonight we will light the first candle.  If you celebrate Hanukkah you can still find plenty of ways to connect as a family and stay connected through those traditions over the years.  You have no idea how much I am looking forward to getting some Rainbow Donuts this Sunday.