Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas

And, here's Lulu's letter to Santa that I promised you:
Come to think of it, maybe she does have this "schmoozing" thing down.

Well, that's enough blogging for today. I'm off to enjoy the family that inspires me to shout about their antics from the rooftops.

Be blessed.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Operation Mary & Joseph

So. You know when you're rushing through the holidays, and the twelve million things on your to-do list, and then you unexpectedly have seven house guests?

Wait. What? No?

Well, that's what went down around here when my pledge-sister from A&M contacted me on Facebook. She said they were headed this way to see her 86-year-old grandfather and all of their sheltering arrangements had fallen through.

Well, what's a girl to do? In the spirit of the season, I let them stay in the stable out back.


Shawn and I played the most heinous hosts to them as we zoomed about getting our kids through their last few days of school. But, as we all came and went, passed on the way in and out of the door and bumped into each other in the kitchen, we actually got to have a few fun conversations and (I hope they agree) made some new friends in the deal.

How's that for a unexpected Christmas gift?

It doesn't hurt that they have the most unbelievably well-behaved five children you could ever hope to meet. (I wish my kids took their shoes off every. single. time they walked into the house...)

And, an additional bonus for me, personally, was that I got to meet the one and only miracle two-year-old Luke Whitaker, their youngest son who I have said more prayers over than I could even begin to count. I didn't get to touch him, though. He smiled and ran from me every time he was near, as I believe he sensed my intentions to abduct him and keep him for my own if I ever got him within my clutches.

Kathryn has her own blog over at Let's blog-stalk her over the next few days and see what she thought of their madcap visit up here (and how close they came to experiencing "The Blizzard of 2011").

Also. They have an elf named Sparkles who followed them all the way from Austin on their visit up here. He must be friends with our elf, Jingles, because they sure did seem glad to see each other the few nights they got to hide together. (I will show you the pictures... Just as soon as I can find the USB cord to download the pictures to my computer... So, maybe next summer sometime...)

In the meantime. Ho Ho Ho! Christmas is coming!!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Learning Valuable Life Skills:
The Barfing Version

Lulu's sick - throw up sick. Poor girl has skipped dinner the past two nights and she asked to go to bed last night at 5:30.

But, come the mornings, she feels slightly better.

Yesterday, she followed me into my bedroom when I went to get dressed.

"Mama! Since there are no boys around, we can have 'Girl Talk!'"
"Yes. We can! What would you like to talk about?"
"Ummm." And, then she left the room.

About ten minutes later (I have to believe it was just because there wasn't anything good on the television), she came back.

"Mama! You got dressed without me!"
"I'm sorry! Did you want to help me pick out what to wear?"
"Yes." [Evidently "Girl Talk" = "me telling you what to wear."]
"Oh. I'm sorry. But, is this okay, what I chose?"


At least she was willing to compromise from the short-sleeve cotton shirtdress that was her first choice - seeing as how it was 40° yesterday. She really did make me take off the boots, tights and sweater dress that I was already wearing. Although, she did thoughtfully tell me, "You can keep your underwear on."

Well. Thanks for leaving me that little piece of dignity.

But, I'm am proud to tell you, this girl is a champion barfer. She'll run herself to the bathroom (or grab her bowl), throw up, rinse her mouth and go back to the couch to lie down. The most she'll ask for is someone to "hold [her] hair."

Why do I think this is giving us a terrifying glimpse into her college years? I never really thought that I would be bragging on my daughter's ability to "puke and rally."

Shawn is out of town [I think I'll save him some barf, though, so he can have the full parenting experience]. I had book club last night. Don't worry. There is no part of my maternal instinct that considered missing my night out because I had a sick child. But, I did start to question whether I was a good mother when I left the babysitter with the words, "If she throws up, I promise I'll pay you extra!" But, I felt confident that Lulu was in capable hands when the babysitter responded with, "Don't worry. I'm sure little kid barf is way less gross than drunk college girl barf." And, I told her that, just like a drunk college girl, Lulu would really just need someone to hold her hair.

*clink clink* (That therapy fund is just growing and growing.)

Monday, December 12, 2011

Boy Wonder

We got Spence's Comanche project returned. Oh, I'm sorry. What's that you say? ONE. HUNDRED? Ka.pow!

And, here's that cover page I told you about.
Oh, stop. You're embarrassing us.

(But, yes. That is my facial masque smeared down the center of his part to simulate the white clay the Comanche would put down the center parts of their hair [or red or yellow - get out of my head Comanche report!] And, do you have any idea how long it takes to help an eight-year-old braid yarn braids down a piece of paper?)

But, Spence knew how hard he had worked on this project and he was proud of that grade. Shawn was out of town when the grades were returned, but we had to call him straight away to tell him the proud results!

Also in school, the 2nd grade wrote letters to Santa. Here's Spence's:
As Shawn paraphrased: "Hiiiiiii, Santaaaaaa... How you beeeeeeen? Goooooood? Gooooood. How's the faaaaaamily? We've got a little something special planned for you when you come on Christmas Eve... BRING ME A TRUCK!"

And, lastly, we had Spence's eight year old well-check with the pediatrician last week. (I-don't-want-to-talk-about-the-fact-that-he-turned-eight-two-months-ago-but-I-forgot-his-appointment-and-they-couldn't-reschedule-us-until-December-so-shut-up-about-it.)

Y'all? It might be weird to be extremely proud of your kid while you're at a check-up. But, I was extremely proud of Spencer at his check-up. I just sat back and let him handle all of her questions... and he did! Even though he was shy and a little timid (and our pediatrician was so kind and friendly, it was easy for him to talk to her), he did it! I didn't have to help "Mommy" him through any part of the exam. Now, I can already hear some of my friends (I'm looking at you, Springer) saying, "The kid's EIGHT YEARS OLD. He should have driven himself to the appointment." But, he's my kid. I want to take care of him. I want to make sure he's comfortable and at ease. But, the fact of the matter is: He is a big kid. He can take care of himself. And he doesn't need me quite as much as I may like to believe he does. I came home and said to Shawn no less than twenty times, "We have a big kid!"

And, speaking of big. She didn't have a growth chart to show me on which our giant man child would fit - for height or weight. But, she said you put them together and he has a BMI in the 95th percentile. She said that's big but it's healthy. Then she looked at me, turned to Spencer and said, "Your dad must be tall?" Rude. And, then, for the rest of the exam, she kept stopping and saying, "Eight years old?!" and "Second grade?!" over and over. And when she tested his strength (made him hold his arms up while she tried to push them down, etc), she got out of breath. So, now. When I call him our giant man child. I mean, our giant man child.

So that's the latest from the Spencer front. Somewhere around here we've had pictures with Santa. And, Lulu wrote a letter to Santa, too. Although, she doesn't have the schmoozing down quite as well as her brother...

Stay tuned. All that and more to come...

Saturday, December 03, 2011

My Christmas Tree is Ugly

I've had a "designer" tree before.
It was beautiful. And perfect. And everything matched.

But, this year. My Christmas tree is ugly.

Homemade ornaments are piled on top of fancy ornaments.
The prevalent decorating style is "clumping."
Ornaments are hung this way and that.
Foam ornaments made in Sunday School are front and center.
All of Lulu's hand-painted ornaments with her name on back...
...are hung with her name facing forward.

But, these were our helpers:

And there are ornaments like this:
(that's signed "Alison S.")
And, this:
And, this:
So, I've had a perfect Christmas tree. And I've had an ugly one.

I like the ugly one so much more.


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