Thursday, December 15, 2011

Santa is Skipping our House

This is what Henry's getting for Christmas:

And that's it.

I thought it was a great idea: get the kid one big gift that he will love and play with every single day. His grandmas, aunts, and uncles will get him a ton of other stuff, and really, how much can one kid play with anyway?

But, guys, you would not believe the backlash I am getting for "only" buying my kid one present for Christmas.

Here are some responses, unedited, with what I *wish* I had responded in italics.

From the grinch who poked their nose in my Christmas, "Oh, just one present from Mom + Dad, and then others from Santa?" Uh, no. Just one present. By the way, my kid's not even two years old. He doesn't have a clue who Santa is.

Same nose-poker, "You might be able to get away with that now, but not when he gets older and wants more." Hi, newsflash, I'm the parent, I'll decide how much I'm going to spend on my kid and how many presents he receives. HE is not in charge of ME. Maybe that's how your house runs, but I'm trying to teach my kid that you don't get everything you want.

From another well-meaning Santa, "We only got one present each when we were little, but that's because we were POOR." (Emphasis his). Yes, I'm aware that we CAN buy more for our kid. But a) I'm not going to waste money on junk that will break or get donated in less than a year, and b) P + I are pretty responsible with our money.

From pretty much every other person I talk to, "Really? Just ONE present? Are you sure?" Yeah, I'm pretty sure. It's not like it's a life or death situation, people. Had I known it would cause this much freaking conversation, I would never have opened my mouth in the first place.

All of these questions have made me wonder: why, exactly, are parents getting kids EVERYTHING they want anyway? I remember Christmases at our house growing up being a pretty big affair. I clearly remember my dad telling my mom, "They can only play with one thing at a time!" And I definitely remember quickly losing interest in eighty percent of those toys within about two months. Did I really need that extra Barbie? Of course not! And don't get me started on the board games! I love board games, but we must have had over a hundred. And we were WAY worse off than what P + I are right now. What in the world were my parents thinking?

And what are all these other parents thinking? Now, I'm not trying to be a total grinch about Christmas - I love Christmas. I will also love paying off my credit card bill in full come January, and I wonder how many of the "buy everything they ask for" parents can say that.

P + I did put a LITTLE thought into this decision. Here's our reasoning, not that I should need a G.D.* reason for how we spend our money:

We have a smallish house. It's certainly not an apartment, and I've totally lived in smaller, but for Pete's sake, toys take up a ridiculous amount of room. And of course he's not content to keep them in his room. There must be at least two toys in every single room of the house at any given time - I'm pretty sure he's OCD like that.

He certainly isn't deprived when it comes to toys. He's good, don't worry. We have plenty. In fact, we still have two boxes from Christmas LAST YEAR that we haven't even opened. He's not going to grow up and think his parents didn't love him because he didn't have 25 presents to open Christmas morning.

Toys cost money. Money I'd much rather put toward the mortgage so we can help him pay for college someday. Or buy a car for him.

His current favorite toy is a tie between wooden spoons and anything in the plastic containers drawer. (Hence the choice of a kitchen - I'm not as dumb as I look. What this kid needs is a distraction while Mama's cooking.) Blankets and socks are a close third and fourth.

He doesn't NEED more toys. He doesn't even really WANT more toys. It's called being RESPONSIBLE.
Bottom line, Santa can skip our house. Mama has it covered. And I probably won't have time to make cookies anyway, since I'll be too busy wrapping the kid's ONE GIFT.

*Phillip + I are trying to watch our language.

Image from here.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Christmas Tree Hunting

For the last couple of years, Phillip's extended family has been tagging their trees in a big family event at a local tree farm. We haven't gone, partly because sometimes I like to do stuff on our own, and partly because I loved going up to a nursery in Smyrna to pick out our tree and see all the ornaments and lights. But after last year's disastrous tree hunting exercise (at a more local place that I won't name, but it was bad), we decided to give it a go.

And I'm so glad we did. We were the only ones on the farm, it was a gorgeous day, and Henry had a blast running through the trees and chasing the (surprisingly tame) rabbit. I got some great pictures of the kid, and we even took a not - quite - so - hot picture of the family. We so rarely get all three of us in a photo, so that was a super special moment for me.

Not to mention the tree we picked was amazing, and looks so fantastic in front of our windows. We went a bit smaller this year, just shy of 10 feet, but I really think we've found the perfect size.

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Me and Phillip
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Watching the rabbit with Daddy (who Henry calls Diddy, which I find hilarious)
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Henry with his Uncle Chris

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Running, AKA our Christmas card photo this year

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The whole family in front of our tree

Do you do a real or artifical tree? Is yours a big one like ours?

**December Daily - I am doing it, I just haven't gotten around to printing the pictures or uploading to my blog recently. Plus, I just finished my very last scrapbook page for 2010, which means my album is full and I need a new one for 2011. I managed to fit '08, '09, and '10 in one big one. My plan for DD is just a 4x6 paper album that I bought on Etsy, plus a few things I had laying around, plus some not-so-daily pictures. I'm just doing "holiday" items this year. So a "tree hunting" pic will go in, even though we actually did this before Thanksgiving.

Sunday, November 13, 2011


Just thought you should see the cutest little airplane on the block:

Always with the fruit snacks . . .

Friday, November 11, 2011

Drive-throughs for Everyone!

Do you remember those writing prompts when you were in school? Things like, what do you want to be when you grow up? And, if you could have one superpower, what would it be?

Or, my favorite, what if you were mayor/governor/president for the day?

I'm taking the challenge. As official queen of my local 50-mile radius, I am hereby declaring that every place of business shall have a drive-through, or suffer the ridicule of me spray-painting a giant frowny face on the side of your building.

Here's why: I have a two-year old. Now I don't know if you have or have ever had a two-year old, but the worst part about a kid in a carseat is getting them IN and OUT of the carseat ALL THE TIME.

It's completely obnoxious. I mean, what happened to the good ol' days when you could just leave your kids in the car when you ran in for a six-pack? (Joking! I'm sort of joking!)

Last Sunday, I was heading over to mom's for a quick visit/get the heck out of my house errand with Henry. I wanted to get a newspaper, just to check out the sales circulars, as we're shopping for a new dishwasher (which is an entirely different rant). I had to unbuckle Henry, carry all 27 pounds of him into the gas station, grab a paper, wait in line for the little [bad word] who cut in front of me, and finally pay my $1.50 for the Sunday paper.

[I'm trying to limit my language. For the kid.]

Oh, wait, then I had to bring him back to the car, throw him in, and re-buckle him for the 7 minute ride to Mom's house.

All of this hassle would have been saved if only the Royal Farms had a drive-through.

It's not so bad in summer, but on days like today, when I would be on the receiving end of major frowny faces if I didn't put a jacket on my kid, I have to put on his jacket before we get out of the car. And then take it off again when we get back in, because, like me, Henry will sweat his little tush off if he wears his jacket for the whole ride home.

And then there's the stroller situation. Getting a stroller in and out of the car is a major pain in the you-know-where, especially when you have MY kid, who is not exactly thrilled about being moved from one contraption that controls his movement to a DIFFERENT contraption that also limits his flailing about. Sure, WalMart + Target have shopping carts for me to put the kid in, but what about the pharmacy? And yes, I am aware that many pharmacies have kindly installed a drive-through in this day and age for the old people picking up their prescriptions - you know, the old geezers who shouldn't be driving anyway, for the love of pickles.
But that's only for prescriptions! What about when I really need some tissues? Or a PAPER? Or sudafed? I don't want to have to drag my poor little kid out in the cold because his mom is cranky and wants her sales circulars, for Pete's sake. I just want the convenience of never having to leave my car. Or put on a coat.

First order of queenhood accomplished, I would then set my sights on free daycare for everyone! Because, hot dog, childcare is expensive.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


Do other kids wrap themselves up in blankets like this?

H seems to find it absolutely hysterical.

Thursday, June 30, 2011

Easter, AKA Trying to Take a Good Photo + Failing

I'd like to know who gave H permission to move around ALL. THE. TIME. Seriously.

Case in point, this sequence of pictures from Easter (yes, in April. I know, I suck. Sorry). If you can't tell, I'm trying desperately to keep him out of the freshly mown grass before we go to church.

And then (finally!) a halfway decent shot. Although if I'm being perfectly honest, I kinda sorta like the ones where we're holding hands. Kinda. Lots.

Of course, we had to have Daddy join in the fun too.

Ah, here we go:

So handsome.

I'd love to share more, but apparently I haven't backed up my photos to flickr in two months. Guess what I'll be doing tonight? Oh, yeah.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

I don't want you to think I'm a bad parent, but . . .

Ever since H learned to walk, P + I are constantly stopping mid-sentence to say something like this:

Where's Henry? Where did he go? Aren't you watching him? I thought YOU were watching him?

That's right. We are the parents who can't keep track of our own kid. In our OWN HOUSE. He's too darn fast, I tell you.

Last night, he was carrying P's lunchbox - yes, my 28 year old husband carries a lunchbox to work EVERY. SINGLE. DAY. So H was carrying his daddy's lunchbox up and down the hall when suddenly, he wasn't.

Also, if you have a kid that is at that age that he/she should be walking, but isn't, just wait until they figure out they if they walk instead of crawl, they can CARRY STUFF WITH THEM. Oh, it's like the heavens just opened up the day H figured out that little gem. Now he's a big fan of the walking. With his hands full. Mostly of things that DO NOT BELONG TO HIM.

Also, I had to buy new mascara because H dropped mine in the toilet. Seriously.

So back to last night. H suddenly disappears. We find him (thanks to the dropped lunchbox) in the bathroom, because he's a boy, and the bathroom is, apparently, the best room in the whole house. Luckily, I wrangled him out of there before we lost anything else to the porcelain god.

I love my kid. It tickles me to death when I saw him toddling around the house. But I have to say, I am imagining all sorts of mischief. ALL SORTS.

In totally related news, we just bought a new lamp. Bet you can't guess who broke the old one, HENRY.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Ten on Tuesday

1. I'm 3/4ths of the way through LOAD 211. This has been the hardest one so far. The best thing about LOAD, in my opinion, is that I'm scrapping the "eh" photos. The ones that I know I want in my albums, but that aren't really as inspiring as other photos. Since I pretty much have 15-20 minutes every day to a layout, I can quickly get these on a page.

2. Henry cut his first molar, and Oh. My. God. Poor kid.

3. Henry is walking. Oh. My. God. Poor Mama. (The hardest thing right now is that he's not quite as good as he thinks he is, which is resulting in more bumps and bruises than my little heart can handle.)

4. The sneak peaks for April are up at Coordinates Collections. I am getting kit one + lots of extras. So excited for some blue!

5. Two weekends ago, we went wedding + bridesmaid gown shopping with my sister. Love her dress. Love our dresses. Very light and airy and pretty.

6. I had my first margherita in over 2 years. It was fabulous. I got halfway in and had to stop. Whoa.

7. Work kind of blows right now. Just super busy, to the point of being so overwhelmed that I can't even think straight.

8. Loving Pinterest. (I'm carabecca on there, too.) I have invites if anyone needs one. This is what I wanted Tumblr to be. Perfection so far.

9. Picked up a rotisserie chicken last night at the supermarket. I think we're going to start doing this once a week - so simple and only $4. Fed all three of us with meat to spare.

10. After a 70-degree day on Friday, I woke up this morning to 3 inches of snow. Seriously? SERIOUSLY?