Outside my window... my dirty car. The whole snow/sleet/freezing rain episode made it such a mess. Maybe I'll get it washed today.
I am thinking... that I need to get Addie registered for kindergarten soon. I have to apply for a school transfer so that she can go to the same school as Nina, and I can't do that until I get her registered.
I am thankful for... Elise being able to walk around a little bit without crutches. It makes her not quite so high-maintenance! Also, hopefully that means she is healing.
From the kitchen... cupcakes from last night's birthday celebration (1/25 - me, 1/26 - father-in-law, 1/27 - Nina, today - niece)
I am creating... nothing, but there are so many things on my creation to-do list - birthday letters for Nina and Addison, a photo album from our San Antonio trip, park plans for our Disney trip.
I am going... to take the kids into work this morning to deliver Girl Scout cookies. We have a three hour school delay due to the threat of freezing rain that never actually materialized.
I am reading...Mrs. Kennedy and Me by Clint Hill. I absolutely love this book. It is wonderful. Clint Hill was Jackie Kennedy's secret service agent during Kennedy's presidency. He developed a really tight bond with Mrs. Kennedy, enjoyed her, respected her, and saw her in a way few other people did. His memoir of their time together is fascinating - from the behind the scenes look at how the secret service operates, to his friendship with Mrs. Kennedy.
I am hoping... that Elise will be completely off her crutches by the end of this week.
I am hearing... the housekeeper assigning cleaning jobs to my kids. I LOVE that!
Around the house... clutter. everywhere. always. sigh.
One of my favorite things...Land's End down vests.
A few plans for the rest of the week... book club, Nina's birthday party, and the start of cookie booths.
Here is a picture thought I am sharing... the birthday coffee cup Caribou Coffee put my coffee in on Friday! How cool is that?
We still haven't gotten any snow to speak of, but the girls decided the skating rink conditions of our driveway would make for perfect sledding.
Yes, we're the mean parents who forced our kids to wear helmets while sliding down a sheet of ice. Nina was none too pleased about it, but she complied. Addie had no complaints, and after she split her chin open, I think she appreciated the need for a helmet for the rest of her head.
Until the "chin meets ice" incident, Addie had a ball. Her cackle in this video cracked me up.
Eventually, the whole neighborhood discovered that our icy driveway made a pretty nice sledding hill.
It doesn't look like any of their parents are as mean as us. I'm OK with that though. We already have one kid with a broken leg. I'm all about injury prevention measures right now.
Today's sledding was definitely more successful than last week's sledding fail, but I'm really thinking we may need to take these poor children up to the mountains one weekend, so they can sled on some actual snow.
I am thankful for... my mom's hip healing properly. She is off the walker!
From the kitchen... pork chops, cinnamon apples, salad, and rice. Liquid meal for Elise.
I am creating... nothing, but something is definitely being created down in the kitchen. I'm listening to a conversation between two eight year olds ("It says we need an egg white", "That means not the yolk", "OK, I'll do it", "Wait! You're getting the yolk!", "I know. Maybe we can just use the yolk too.", "OK. Stir it up.", "Let's try again.", "OK. Get another egg.", "Wait, the shell is in there.", "Now we need honey.", "Get the bowl.", "I have it right here!", "No, the other bowl") I'm not sure I even want to know what is going on down there. I haven't ventured down to check out the state of the kitchen. I'm a little scared.
I am going... to go get a snack.
I am reading...Mrs. Kennedy and Me by Clint Hill. I've just barely started it, but it seems good so far. I finished Fonduing Fathers by Julie Hyzy which I thoroughly enjoyed. I started The Other Boleyn Girl by Philippa Gregory and really gave it a college try since it is my book club book this month, but I hated it. I finally just had to quit. I couldn't waste my limited reading time on that trash. It felt like I was reading the script of a cheesy daytime soap opera set in the court of King Henry VIII.
I am hoping... that Elise will be able to go without crutches soon. Her jump rope team has a performance at her school this Friday, and I know she would love to turn double-dutch ropes if she can lose the crutches by then.
I am hearing... the kitchen banter of two eight year olds concocting who knows what.
Around the house... we're trying to keep paths clear to keep Elise safe on her crutches.
One of my favorite things...cookies... just about any type. I wanted to bake some last night, but we're out of flour. After this afternoon, I'm betting we'll be out of eggs as well.
A few plans for the rest of the week... my birthday, Nina's birthday, and a Girl Scout trip to the coast.
Here is a picture thought I am sharing... chopsticks - more than one way to eat with them.
Outside my window... another unseasonably warm day! The girls (who aren't on crutches) spent all weekend running around outside in shorts. Crazy for January!
I am thinking... that Zero Dark Thirty was an excellent movie.
I am thankful for... health insurance.
From the kitchen... burgers, chips, and baked beans.
I am creating... not much.
I am going... out for coffee with my mom this afternoon. She's getting a bit of cabin fever
I am reading... Fonduing Fathers by Julie Hyzy. I finished Affairs of the Steak this week. I think Fonduing Fathers is the most recent in the White House Chef series, so once I finish it, I can move on to something else!
I am hoping... that my mom and Elise are able to get rid of their walker and crutches soon. They are both tired of them. I also hope Elise's new glasses arrive soon. Hers broke, and she looks a bit off in J.C.'s old glasses that she's wearing now.
I am hearing... Sex and the City on TV.
Around the house... it has been so refreshing to have the doors and windows open the past few days.
One of my favorite things...movie theater popcorn.
A few plans for the rest of the week... ortho appointments (both pedist and dontist), jump rope parent meeting, and Girl Scout meetings.
Here is a picture thought I am sharing... Gotta love when you come home from dinner to find that the babysitter has been entertaining your kids making balloon animals!!
I'm behind in my blogging, and nobody wants to hear about Christmas any more, so this will be a quick fly-by of our holidays. Christmas Eve was simple - just the five of us, a slightly overcooked pork roast, a sweet potato casserole, some veggies and champagne. Nobody told me pajamas were the required attire for the evening, so I looked a bit out of place.
Christmas morning, I was set up at my usual spot on the couch, video camera in hand, as I have every Christmas for years, ready to film the girls running down the stairs to discover the Santa gifts. Santa was generous this year, so I couldn't wait to catch their reactions on film. You know where this is going, right? The camera was set on photo rather than video, so I took a single photo of them at the top of the stairs. Nice. It turns out it was for the best anyway though. They ran down to find a huge green box from Santa. When they lifted the lid, a note was carried up by balloons.
Here's a closer look.
A trip to Disney World! The most magical place on earth! Every child's dream come true! No better Santa gift!
Uh. No. Not at all. They opened the box, did not even look at the sign, and headed to their stockings. Then, when J.C. pointed out the sign, Elise gave us a moderately enthusiastic, "Yea! Disney World!", Nina said, "What did Santa bring me?", and Addison kept on heading to the stockings. Their reactions were underwhelming, to put it nicely. Then, they opened their stockings while I murmured under my breath, "spoiled rotten... mumble, mumble, Santa might just send JC and me to Hawaii instead...mumble, mumble... see if Santa ever brings anything extravagant again... mumble, mumble" I think it is fortunate none of that was captured on tape, don't you?
After stockings, the gift opening commenced.
"A new bathrobe... way more exciting than Disney!"
"Mickey Mouse? Who cares? There is Play-doh!"
Then it was off to my in-laws' house for a lovely turkey dinner and more gifts.
"A crochet set! Thank goodness for Grandmamma knowing that a crochet hook would be better than the Magic Kingdom!"
No, I'm not bitter. Really. I'm not. I never even contemplated telling them that Santa revoked his gift. Honest.
The day after Christmas was better. I started my morning off with a peppermint mocha using a Starbuck's gift card and reading a book purchased with an Amazon gift card. Then we grew crystals,
built a treehouse out of Legos,
and played new games. It was a fun day.
A couple days later, Elise's jump rope team performed at half-time of an NCSU basketball game. They didn't have the same type of practice space at PNC Arena that the team has usually had for basketball games, so the performance was not as strong as it should have been. It was fun seeing them up on the big screens though.
On New Year's Eve, we went to Games Night at a friend's house. We played board games, party games, the Wii, and Addie had a ball running around with the other kids her age. It was a fun, laid-back way to ring in the new year.
Overall, the holidays were nice. We had ups and downs, but we all enjoyed the time off of work and school and time spent with family. I have finally come to peace with the fact that the Pez and M&M's had a bigger wow factor than a Disney trip. Lesson learned.
Outside my window... it is dark outside. I had planned on writing this post much earlier in the day.
I am thinking... that I had no idea I had missed last week's Simple Woman's Daybook post until a friend emailed me to see if I was OK! Somehow last Monday completely escaped me, and I hadn't even realized it.
I am thankful for... not being cookie mom this year!! Elise's cadette troop ran the Cookie Rally Friday night for 300 younger Girl Scouts. Cookie season is gearing up, and I'll be playing a small role in it this year. I'm thrilled.
From the kitchen... Domino's pizza. That was not the original plan, but it has been a long day. I didn't have energy for anything else.
I am creating... a Christmas blog post. I can't believe I've gone this long without writing one. I'm a bit behind in my blogging.
I am going... to relax tonight. It has been a stressful day.
My mom was one of those mean mothers who was a stickler for thank you notes. After every Christmas and birthday, I remember sitting at the table having the importance of thank you notes drilled in to me and being made to write them. Like every child of a mean thank-you-note-writing-mom, I'm sure I complained. I'm sure I procrastinated. I'm sure many of my notes were hastily written, so I could run off to play. Looking back, I can honestly say, "Mom, thank you for sticking with it." Now, as an adult, the importance of a hand-written thank you note is understood, and I appreciate them that much more. There is no better way to show your gratitude. I'm trying my best to follow in my mom's footsteps as a mean thank-you-note-enforcer. I don't always succeed. Occassionally notes go out really late, through email, or (dropping my head in shame) not at all. Despite misses here and there, I want my children to grow up with the same foundation. To that end, we spent this morning at the kitchen table writing Christmas thank you notes. If you've never made your five year old dictate a thank you note for you to write, you are missing out. Here are two from this morning.
Dear JoJo and Bubba,
Thank you for the P book. It will let me learn how to read because of letters. I like the letter R because it is my favorite letter in the whole state. I hope you can walk better soon.
Dear Aunt L,
Thank you for the Wizard of Alls movie. I like it so much. I was wishing for it so much. How did you know that? I like the Wizard of Alls because I was wishing for it. My favorite is all of the sparkling shoes. The part of the movie I like is when the house got on one of the witches. Happy New Year!
How sad would it be if I deprived the gift givers of notes like those. My hope for my children is that one day they will appreciate the dying art of thank you note writing and continue the habit as adults. When I am a grandmother, I hope to get notes from my grandchildren about their favorite letter in the state and favorite part of the Wizard of Alls!