Friday, December 28, 2012

Why I Haven't Been Writing

In this last month of holiday prep, I've been busy with the usual things.  But I've also been working very hard on this last Christmas stocking.....

Every moment that I have to sit, I'm sewing.  And when I'm sewing, I'm watching TV.  And when I'm watching TV and sewing, my mind shuts down to any thoughts other than stitches and thread color and the suspense of GH.  If I have a blink of an eye idea of a post to write, I have forgotten it by the time I get up to stretch and do the other things in life that must be done, like cooking dinner or laundry folding.

As hard as I worked, on Christmas morning this was what I was doing:
And while it is much closer to done, it's not done.  All my free time is still devoted to the stocking.

Wishing everyone a Happy New Year a few days early.....if I'm staying up that late, I'm probably going to be sewing and not too interested in the ball dropping!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Sprinkle Me

It's Christmas Eve morning, and I am awake and starting to plan
My kids and my hubby are still in dream land.
The coffee is on and the oven is heating
The dough is chilled and ready for rolling
Cookie cutter shapes line up in a row
Santa, angel, reindeer, wreath with a bow
The dogs are awake and sniffing around
And know a small cookie will make it's way down
The aroma of baking will rise through the air
The mess I will have with sprinkles everywhere

It's Christmas Eve morning and the carols softly play
The glow of the tree lights is making me smile
The excitement and joy of this magic moment
Is why I wake up early year after year!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Self Checkout Leads To Divorce

I am a huge fan of the new self checkout lanes at our local grocery store.  Honestly, some days I just don't feel like chit-chatting and my vocabulary consists of a series of grunts.  Those days self checkout saves me from appearing like a crazed hermit come down from Mother Mountain.

My kids like self checkout.  My husband likes self checkout.  We are a family who loves to help ourselves.

That is, until my husband and I do self checkout together.

It is a sure cause of an argument in the store, and suddenly we are like that elderly couple bickering over if those apples were really galas or jonagolds.  The red light on our station starts flashing and the computer voice tells us we need the clerk to come help us.  And also, put our item back in the bag because it feels like we are trying to steal it.  My checks are burning, my husband is frustrated and I always end up abandoning him to crack silly jokes with the clerk on duty.

I pretend that I do not know that man.  He's just some no account drift I suppose.  Definitely not my husband.

After numerous mishaps with us as a couple at self checkout, we have decided for the sake of our marriage that self really does mean single, and we will join the line for the cashier.  It's really made for a much more peaceful shopping trip.

We're still like the elderly couple bickering over galas or jonagolds, but at least we don't have a red light flashing over us!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Keeping Normal

Friday my kids came home from school, with so many friends the house was pulsing with noise, but my kids stopped to ask if I'd heard the news.  I'm pretty well known for not watching or reading the news, but even I knew about the horrific top story on every one's minds and hearts.

As the evening unfolded, their friends told stories of their mother's texting them during the school day to say, "I love you".  A mom came by our house and paused a long planned party just to hug her child.  My kids questioned why I didn't text them, or stop the party so I could hug them.

Honestly, it didn't occur to me.  I send them off each day with my love and good day wishes, a text would be unusual.  A hug less so, but in the joyousness of the party, I didn't want to stop their laughter.

I firmly believe that one of my jobs as their Mom is to keep their lives as normal as possible.  We all know bad things happen in the world, but this place here, this home that smells like buttered popcorn and dogs and teenagers, that literally shakes on it's foundations with rollicking good times, this is their haven.  This is where they can come to when things are stressful and they know we will listen, love, understand, support.

Tragic events make me want to hold them tighter, to smother with love, but I will maintain this level of normal.  The party will go on, their laughter will ring out, unusual thumps will shake the whole house. I will quietly thank God for my blessings and pray for those whose lives have been changed forever.

And on Monday, I will send my kids off to school, with my love and wishes for good days at school and all my prayers.  Just like always.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

It Depends On The Weather

As I left  the office to walk to the hospital, yes I am healed up enough to walk again!, a co-worker said, "Take your time," with a wink.  I laughed and said, "It depends on the weather, ha-ha-ha," as if the wet cold rain and cutting wind would have a say in how fast I walked.

Dear friends, I lied.

When I am in the mood to mosey, the rain, the wind, the cold, none of that matters!

I felt like taking it slow, armed with my umbrella and layers of clothing, I mosied.   Yes, my tights clad legs suffered, but the rest of me enjoyed the heck out of the walk.  I avoided looking in the mirror when I got back into the office, though.  I didn't want to know what kind of rats nest the wind styled my hair!

Messy hair is a small price to pay for walk of contentment.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Breaking Rules

Today I wore a black headband in my hair.  Now, that isn't earth shattering news but it does break a personal rule I have strictly followed for as long as I can remember doing my own hair.

I've always liked my socks to match each other and my outfit.  I never wear pink and red together.  And my hair "pretties" match my clothes.

Today I am wearing a brown shirt and a black headband.  I couldn't find the brown one (does one still exist in this house?) and I was late for work.  I grabbed the black and left.

My hair looks great, but I am very aware that I'm wearing the wrong color.  The next step in this rule breaking streak will be unmatched socks.

Well, if it's laundry day and the only clean socks are the ones in the unmatched basket, that doesn't count.  That's just good housekeeping.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Putting Monday To Bed

I have tried to rejoice in Monday.  I have tried to be thankful for Monday.  I have tried to count my blessings on Monday.  But the sad hard truth is I hate Monday.

So I'm going to put this Monday to bed and try my rejoicing, thankful, blessing counting best on all the rest of the days of the week.  Tuesday feels better already!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Moving And The Importance Of Teenagers

I have helped my parents move 3 times in my adult life, and each time I have said this is it.  This is the last move until we send you to a nursing home.

And yet, yesterday found me helping them move again.  This time I did not say it will be the last time, mostly because I really do think it will be the last time.  When you walk into their little Hobbit House, it feels like the perfect fit.  It's warm and cozy and shines with all the hard work given to it in the last few weeks, and I can see them living there forever.

I was apprehensive heading into the moving day because I was the only sister able to be there to physically move things, and I have a ankle I don't want to make worse, and two out of three sons-in-law had to work, and we were basically counting on 5 teenage boys and two girls.

It was the easiest move I've ever helped do!  I only carried small boxes in, the boys did all the heavy lifting including the freezer and the china closet, and the girls unpacked boxes like pro's.  We could not have done it without our wonderful group of kids and friends.

As I watched the boys wrestle a slippery couch into the room, and the girls unwrap box after box of fragile pretties each individually wrapped in paper, I thought this is one of those great things about kids growing up: their adult sized help!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Christmas Joy

Back in the day, my parents signed us up for roller skating lessons.  I'm not sure how it came about but I have a vague idea of my Mom not being able to roller skate and not wanting that childhood horror to be ours too.  I am not now and have never been a joiner.  At the age of six I once sat through an hour long art class, refusing to make a dinosaur out of clay because I was uncomfortable in the situation.  The fact that my parents risked it again and put me in lessons amazes me.  What if I'd just stood at the rail, not willing to move?

Turns out that wasn't an issue.  I was a roller skating fool!  I'd fly around the rink, face sweaty, feet blistered, heart happy, 80's pop music giving me wings!  Fun doesn't begin to describe what I had when I was roller skating.

The year we got roller skates for Christmas stands out as one of the best ever.  We were back home, visiting family, staying at a Grandma's house.  I remember waking up and going into my parent's room, sitting on the edge of their bed and putting those skates on right away, sleepy and not all the way awake but very happy.

As a Mom, I look at those skates in a different light.  I've always been awe-struck that my Mom found two pairs of roller skates, that fit us, second hand.  It was, as she loves to say, a God thing.  Money was tight back then, but I didn't  know it.

I had a pair of roller skates of my very own!

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Children Laughing, People Passing

My Christmas stocking making career begin with our son's second Christmas.  I wanted him to have a nice stocking, so I decided I'd make one.  I picked a verse and sketched the drawing and cross stitched my heart out.  I did the same two years later for his sister.

Then I hung their finished stockings side by side and realized I should have decided on a universal size, because one was tall and skinny and one was short and fat.  My sense of perfection could not live with that, so I redid their stockings and have based every stocking I've done since then on that second set.

I have made 8 stockings since then, plus sewn together 5 others, front, back, lining, and trim, usually doing that last bit on Christmas Eve.  I do like to procrastinate.

This year I am working on my niece's stocking.  Picking the right song took her mom and I weeks, finding the right fabric was just about impossible, but here it is, 19 days till Christmas, and I have pulled out the threads and started over twice and whenever I am sitting in a quiet moment, I hear snip of the song I am sewing.....

Children laughing
People passing
Meeting smile after smile........

It's a good thing I am a fan of Christmas music!  It is stuck solidly in my head.

This post inspired by prompt #5 at Mama's Losin' It!

And I'm linking up with Tid Bit Thursday over at Papa is a Preacher.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

The Shoulds Are Pressuring Me

The Shoulds are pressuring me.

I should do some housework, I should sort some laundry, I should clear my crap off the table, I should get my veggie tray ready for tomorrow night's party....

Those Shoulds are really a pain in my rear.

So, I am going to do one of those things, at this moment undecided as to which one is most important, but one thing will get done, and then I'm going to sit down, put my feet up and honestly, fall asleep in front of the TV, all before 9:00.

The Shoulds are going to take a backseat and let the Musts drive for a bit!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Almost Back To Normal

My walking boot is gathering dust
And my ankle brace is under the couch
Day two of two nice matching shoes
And tights unsagged by velcro tapes
I'm almost back to normal
My ankle is healing up great!

Monday, December 3, 2012

And I'm Back

My husband and I decided weeks ago to take the first weekend in December as our weekend, and we'd get away and do something fun and not at all responsible....

It was a fantastic time, trying new food, seeing James Bond do his cool spy thing, shopping for Christmas gifts, and just enjoying a few days of us time.

I'm going to hold on to that wonderful feeling as I head into Monday and real life, and as my husband asked, remember it at 5:30 tonight when I'm tired!