Wednesday, December 21, 2011

12 Days of Christmas

My hubby and I like the Dallas Cowboys. I mean we really like the Dallas Cowboys. Alright, I am a HUGE fan, and my husband has what borderlines on an unhealthy love/obsession for the Cowboys. I call our living room a shrine to the Cowboys somewhat jokingly. We are members of the True Blue Fan Club, subscribe to Cowboys Weekly, and our closets are filled with Cowboys jerseys. My family and friends know better than to call during a Cowboys game, and my hubby is incredulous that people would dare schedule a birthday party for their child on a Sunday during football season ("don't they know the COWBOYS are playing right now?").
So it goes without saying that our kids are Cowboys fans, too. About a week ago, E and C decided that the Cowboys deserve to have their own Christmas song, and thus was born the Dallas Cowboys 12 Days of Christmas. Feel free to sing it at your house, and don't be surprised if it is on the radio by next holiday season.

On the twelfth day of Christmas, the Cowboys gave to me:
Twelve signed footballs
Eleven cheerleaders cheering
Ten stars a' shining
Nine touchdown dances
Eight pro-bowl players
Seven interceptions
Six giant fatheads
Five superbowl riiiiiings
Four forced fumbles
Three awesome helmets
Two Romo jerseys
and a ticket to the Superbowl Game

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Laundry woes

My hubby and I split many chores, and laundry is one that falls on my side of the list. I don't mind laundry, but after a week without a working dryer, I was WAY behind. Now that all appliances are in working order, my kids finally have clean socks and underwear, and my mountain of dirty clothes has worked it's way down to a manageable hill, I decided to share with the world (or my handful of blog readers) my laundry woes.

Socks- Not only is there a pile of socks with no mates at the end of every basket, but matching socks is like a jigsaw puzzle. There are 6 different pairs of feet in my house, and while the kids only have one or two types of sockes (N has some with lines, and some with grey toes; K has plain pink toes, and some with girly patterns), the hubby has an endless variety. He has long socks, ankle socks, and some in between; grey toes, grey soles, plain white, some with a stripe, some that say "Hanes". I won't lie, some (ahem, most) weeks, I leave all the socks in a basket and let the family find their own matches.

Pockets full of stuff- Luckily, E has finally broken the "crayon in the pocket" habit. There were several years of shirts and pants with crayon markings on them. We have also moved past the "MP3 player in the pocket" stage- or it could be that we stopped supplying MP3 players (and they wonder why we won't shell out $200 for an Ipod). Unfortunately, both E and C are hanging in the "DS games in the pocket" stage. Which means few DS games have titles on them, since the stickers have washed off. On the plus side, DS games are resilient and work after several trips through the washer.

Clean clothes in the laundry- my kids have been known to leave some clean clothes on the floor of their room either because they didn't have room to fit shirts/pants in their drawer or just didn't feel like putting their laundry away. And of course, anything on the floor finds its way to the laundry basket downstairs eventually. I'm sure I wash more clean clothes than I realize, but occasionally I catch a clean shirt before it enters the washer, and it is followed by the typical "do you think I wash clothes because I like it?" speech met by their blank stares (b/c of course Mom likes to do laundry).

And finally- All the clothes that need to be pulled apart or turned around before being returned in a neat, clean pile. There are the balled up socks, with all their dirty, sweaty grossness. Should I undo them (EWWW) or wash them as they are (they won't get REALLY clean that way). Shirts inside out- I can't help but turn them right, but one day when I dial down my laundry OCD, I swear I'm gonna leave 'em be. And in the winter, shirts inside of shirts. I am all about layering to stay warm, but can't you take the layers apart for me?

Many have suggested that I let the kids help with the laundry, or let them takeover the chore entirely. And I've thought about it, really I have. One small problem, it has to be folded a certain way, and the stacks of laundry have to be stacked the right way. I've tried to teach them, but I'm pretty sure it is going to take several drinks (for them and me*) to make it through that lesson. Yup, as laid back as I think I am, I am completely Type-A, OCD when it comes to laundry. I've even caught myself refolding clothes my hubby has folded and rearranging the piles (he just can't get them right). So until we move to a nudist colony**, I guess I better keep this pile of laundry moving.

*Don 't worry, I wouldn't really give the kids drinks while teaching them to fold laundry, although it couldn't make their dewrinkling and folding any worse. If I ever try to teach them the right way to fold pants and shirts, I will spring for the years of counseling they will surely need. Or maybe it would be cheaper to hire a maid. Hmmm.
**Do they ever wear clothes in a nudist colony? I bet they do in the winter. Must do research.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Dinner Stand Off

G is two years and not quite two months--officially old enough to be part of the "Terrible Twos". I know from developmental psychology classes that this is a time when he will try to assert his independence. I know as a mom that this is the time I need to be calmest or the battle will rage for much longer than necessary.

Now, B never gave me but so much trouble. G, however, is a redhead, and he has the fiestiness to prove it. Luckily, I worked as a middle school teacher for twelve years. Bring it, Baby.

Monday night's menu: ham, mashed potatoes, and lima beans. G loved limas as a baby. He adores bacon now. Who doesn't like mashed potatoes? Still, he refused dinner. During the twenty minutes when B and I ate, he sat in his high chair and announced that he wasn't going to eat "this dinner." That's a shame, really, since I'm mass producing cookies this week. I'd answer, "If you don't taste dinner, you can't have a cookie later."

He refused. He "had to go potty" (though he didn't actually have a deposit). He took a few bites of mashed potatoes while I cleaned up from B's and my dinner. He got down afterwards, and played until he had a real potty break. After the successful pee, he announced, "Now I get a coo-kie!"

"No, G. Cookies are for those who ate dinner tonight."

I kid you not at this point. I assure you, that even though he's only two, he feigned surprise and asked sweetly, "Oh, I gotta eat dinner?"

I took deep breaths, cussed in my head, asked him if he was TRYING to make me crazy (for the record, he answered, "Yeth. Yeth, ma'am.") He got no cookie.

Tuesday's menu: pizza. I was trying to help him, by choosing one of his faves for dinner on this cookie night. He ate just a couple bites, then stalled til it was snickerdoodle-producing time. I balled up the sugar cookie dough, dumped it in his bowl of sugar and cinnamon, and he'd spoon the mixture over the dough. His uneaten pizza sat just a foot or two away on the table.

"I gonna eat this dough," he said as he swiped one from the bowl and took a bite.

Now, I am big on sanitary while baking. I know him well enough to know he'd put it back in the bowl if I told him not to eat it. "Give it to Mommy. You didn't eat."

He relinquished it. I ate the half eaten cookie dough ball. Then I asked if he wanted to eat his pizza so he could have a cookie. Without even looking up, he continued his cinnamon sugar cookie spooning ask he calmly answered "No. I good."

He is good. Really good.

Tonight's menu: spaghetti and garlic bread. Cookie of the night: gingersnaps. Tonight he ate a cookie and a half before I realized that he'd skipped the spaghetti and only eaten half a garlic bread.


This is nothing. When we were growing up, Mom would bake from November-December, and fill an entire freezer. Now that we are older, we split up the duties and exchange, with one day of mass-rollout cookie-baking with all of mom's nine grandkids.

It is one crazy day, where kids come and go between the cookie table, cutting island, outdoor play area, and playroom as they please until batches and batches of cookies are done.

We all wash our hands a million times, laugh, and make a mess of our OCD mom's kitchen. But it's wonderful. Now we get to see the older kids help the little kids decorate, and each year our little artists come up with new ideas. Sure, they pile on the sugar and stress us out a little bit, but they look forward to "Cookie Day", and we love teaching them to make things for the important people in their lives.

Here are 2 slideshares. Why 2? Because I'm too cheap to go Pro and they won't all fit in one on the free account.

Each year, we have a middle finger and a dog pooping. This year, E takes the cake for introducing the yellow snowman.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

"I Want Mama!"

When G was born, he spent some time in the NICU. He'd had trouble breathing regular air, and needed an oxygen hood. I spent nine days in the hospital, waiting for him. My husband visited us daily, and B stayed with his godparents during the entire ordeal.

When we returned home, G slept in the snuggle nest in our king sized bed while Josh slept in the guest room so our night time feedings/my snoring wouldn't keep him awake. As G grew, he often would fuss as we were all busy cleaning the house. Josh would set him in his high chair, face him towards me and say, "There's your Mama!" Sure enough, baby would calm down.

G has pulled a few times of screaming at his godmom's house as I walked out. It makes no sense. He loves that woman, and asks about her whenever we aren't there. He fusses about nursery, too. His lip pokes out as soon as we park the car. I'll toss him to the worker, grab a pager, and reassure her that he'll raise Cain for about three minutes, then be fine. He is, too, til he sees me walk through the door, then he'll turn on the waterworks. If I hadn't known better, I might think he'd been crying the entire time.

"Mama, hold you!" in Wal-mart as I'm trying to push a huge cart of groceries. My motto is, "If he'd have been my first one, he'd have torn my nerves straight up."

Don't get me wrong. This kid is overall pretty laid back. He'll laugh and play and be generally jovial. Still, he wants mama when he wants mama. It can be draining sometimes!

Then just the other day, as we were reading a book with photographs of babies, we came across a crying baby. "He's sad," I noted.

"Yeah," G said, "He needs my Mama."

Heart MELT.