Year End Retrospection

Ahh, this sort of post always crops up this time of year. I got this one from All & Sundry and just couldn’t resist. Of course, this was supposed to be posted yesterday morning but I forgot to finish it up Saturday night and set the post timestamp before we left for Elko yesterday. And then we got here and it was busy and there were wireless internet issues… so this is the first chance I’ve had to post it. Better late than never, right? 🙂

  1. What did you do in 2007 that you’d never done before?

    I put my child on the school bus and trusted that he would arrive back home safely at the end of the day. *gulp*

  2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?

    Luckily, I didn’t make many resolutions last year so I didn’t have any that I really had to keep. Good thing to, because this was a rather unpredictable year. Will I make some this year? I think so.

  3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

    Yes, I knew several friends that had babies this year. Very exciting stuff! I love waiting to hear “the word”.

  4. Did anyone close to you die?

    I had to think about this one. I don’t think so. The years are all starting to run together but I think we were able to keep the Grim Reaper at bay this year.

  5. What countries did you visit?

    Yeah, that would be a big, fat zero.

  6. What would you like to have in 2008 that you lacked in 2007?

    Peace. Peace of mind, peace of heart, peace of soul. I don’t want to have to worry about things that shouldn’t be mattering so much to me.

  7. What dates from 2007 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

    July 7, when Liam turned one and I had to admit once and for all that he was no longer my little baby. July 26, when I went to Chicago for BlogHer (actually, that whole weekend should be on here). August 21, when I discovered I was going to have another baby. October 30, when I realized some hard truths about the state of things. December 28, when I found out this baby was in fact a girl. Strange that nothing before July really stands out, isn’t it?

  8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?

    Getting pregnant with absolutely no medical intervention whatsoever. I never in a million years thought that could ever happen.

  9. What was your biggest failure?

    Touchy subject. I failed socially. I should be happy that I at least tried, but right now, I’m not. Maybe some day I’ll be glad for the efforts I made. I also failed professionally this year. I hope to change that in the new year.

  10. Did you suffer illness or injury?

    A little illness. No injury. Thank goodness for that, right??

  11. What was the best thing you bought?

    That would have to be the 3D ultrasound. Or the Xbox 360. Both, probably. Very good purchases. Not much else was purchased this year, sadly enough. Plane tickets to Chicago count, right? Though that awful flight back home probably negates whatever was good about that one. Gah.

  12. Whose behavior merited celebration?

    Kile’s. He’s been my rock.

  13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?

    There were a few people who really surprised me with the way they acted and reacted to things. Appalled might be a bit on the dramatic side. Disappointed is better. And depressed is just about spot on.

  14. Where did most of your money go?

    Groceries. And GAS. OMG, the gas. And people wonder why we never come to visit them. Like we can even afford to drive across town half the time!

  15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?

    There were a lot of things to get really excited about this year. “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows” was thrilling. So was “Transformers” and going to the drive-in all the time. I got really excited about being pregnant too, and this dang ultrasound I had yesterday! What a way to end the year! And I was totally excited for Christmas this year. It was so fun to watch the boys get into it.

  16. What song will always remind you of 2007?

    There’s a few here. “Glamorous” by Fergie, “Paralyzer” by Finger Eleven and “Lips of an Angel” by Hinder. The last two were some of Harry’s most favorite songs ever and I have to admit, the boy has taste.

  17. Compared to this time last year, are you:? a) happier or sadder? ?b) thinner or fatter? ?c) richer or poorer?

    a) Happier B) I would say thinner, but being pregnant I fear I must say fatter and c) richer (NOW, if you would have asked a month ago I would have said poorer.

  18. What do you wish you’d done more of?

    Going to church (there were a few months where we didn’t go very much), doing activities with the family such as camping. Walking for exercise.

  19. What do you wish you’d done less of?

    Sitting around like a bump on a log. Which, interestingly enough, is what I’m doing right now. (Funny how that works) I’ve spent a lot of time online and a lot of that time was well spent but I know I did some serious slacking off this year too.

  20. How did you spend Christmas?

    We stayed home, just the four of us. We went out to a late lunch, early dinner on Christmas Eve followed by a candelight service at church and then driving around looking at Christmas lights before heading home. We had the boys open some gifts and after they went to bed, we set up for the morning. In the morning, we woke up pretty early and roused the boys. They spent the next hour or two opening gifts. We had breakfast, played with our goodies and Kile fixed us a fabulous dinner that we enjoyed here (and are still eating the leftovers from, thankyouverymuch).

  21. Did you fall in love in 2007?

    Yes, with my family. Again. Every day that goes by, I learn some way to love them more. It’s incredible.

  22. What was your favorite TV program?

    This could be difficult. Probably “Heroes”, “Lost” and “Big Brother”. I know, I know. *hangs head in shame*

  23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?

    I try not to hate anyone, period. It’s an unproductive emotion and is so strong. Sometimes, people toss around the word “hate” so easily. I don’t hate people (well, except the jerks that cut people off on the interstate) so I only have this rather lame non-answer.

  24. What was the best book you read?

    “Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows”. Hands down. No contest here. That book was quite possibly the best book I’ve read in the last ten years, even. It was really amazing. If you are not a Harry Potter fan, you are definitely missing out. The movies are only a fraction of the story and not even the better fraction.

  25. What was your greatest musical discovery?

    I don’t think I made any musical discoveries this year, but then, I don’t tend to explore a lot when it comes to music. I did watch “American Idol” tough, and sincerely enjoyed it.

  26. What did you want and get?

    Xbox 360 and Halo 3, a baby girl (it would appear!), a trip to BlogHer 2007, and probably countless other things that I can’t seem to think of at the moment.

  27. What did you want and not get?

    Friendships. I got some, don’t get me wrong, but not the ones I wanted or needed, unfortunately. It’s pretty hard to find those real “with you through the hard times” type friends, I’ve found, especially when you’re all grown up.

  28. What was your favorite film of this year?

    Probably “Transformers”. Not a critical success, but it was a heck of a lot of fun. Especially at the drive in. This movie had EVERYTHING in it and was just so much fun.

  29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?

    Gah, I was 32. Can you believe that? I’m too young to be 32. Kile took me out to lunch at Red Lobster after we went to MOPS. For dinner, he made me a yummier than normal dinner. It was a pretty nice day, actually.

  30. What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?

    A really close friendship, something I could count on. Being at home with kids all the time is amazingly isolating. Thank goodness I have this blog or else I would have fallen into a steep depression.

  31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2007?

    Ha! Okay, seriously though I’ve been trying to apply some basic fashion principles to my every day wardrobe. It’s still pretty much “Walmart chic” but I try to wear pants that fit well and are long enough and smaller tops (instead of swallowing myself in oversized t-shirts and sweatshirts). Oh, and in the winter it’s “boots” and the summer is “flip flops”.

  32. What kept you sane?

    This blog. If I didn’t have this blog here to post things on, I think there were several times I very well might have burst open. I need this outlet in my life, and that has never been more apparent to me than it has been this year.

  33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?

    That would probably have to be Clive Owen. I mean, come on, is there any one else who is worthy of my slobber? I think not.

  34. What political issue stirred you the most?

    I think you all know the answer to this one, but it was definitely “health care”. Then again, I’m a big fan of the whole “economy sucks” issue too. Because, you know, it does.

  35. Who did you miss?

    My friends from high school. Those betches were the best and I hate being so far from them. Being able to hang with them on a daily basis (or even weekly basis) would make my life so much richer.

  36. Who was the best new person you met?

    You know, I didn’t really meet anyone new this year. Not anyone who I really remember, at least. That’s something I’ll have to rectify here in the new year. Edited to add: Carrisa was kind enough to remind me that I met her (among other fabulous people) at BlogHer in Chicago this year! Duh, how could I forget??? I met her on Day 1 at breakfast which was a fabulous way to kick off the conference. I also met and got to hang with Shawna and she is so awesome that words can hardly describe how awesome she is. There were a lot of awesome people that I didn’t get to meet, which I’m pretty sad about, but there’s always next year.

  37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2007.

    Be careful with yourself. Don’t trust others with your heart, your family unless you are sure they won’t hurt you in return.  Don’t open up too much too soon.  Tread carefully when it comes to social situations and keep your cards close to your chest.  Sometimes it’s easier (and hurts less) to keep to yourself.

  38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.

    “If you ain’t got no money take your broke ass home” – Glamorous by Fergie.

And that, as they say, is that. Have a Happy New Year, everyone. Don’t get too plastered tonight (but enjoy some champagne for me, will you?).

You Need to Read – December 29

Welcome to the last YNTR for the year!  It’s so weird that 2007 is nearly over.  I hope everyone enjoyed their Christmas this week (those of you that celebrate it, of course) and are recovering from the chaos/letdown/hangover/rich food nicely enough.  Right now, I’m watching my son play the Xbox 360 that we waited for over a year to purchase and finally hunted down at Best Buy last night after Sam’s Club apparently had tags on the shelf for items they no longer had in stock (because, you know, THAT made sense).  He’s playing a Monster Jam game and it’s making me a little motion sick so I am compiling this post instead. You know, at least until Kile and I get our turn at the Xbox to play some more Halo 3 (word is: rules so far).

There aren’t many posts this week, but like I said last week, I expected that.  Still, more people were posting this week than I expected so that was pretty nice.  I appreciate having something to read during the “slow times”.  Remember, just because I don’t comment, doesn’t mean I don’t read about a bazillion blogs.  I’m just a really awful commenter.  Anyhow, enough about me.  On to the awesome posts I caught over the last week!

  • Perceptions…” from Crunchy Carpets. I could have written this post myself a couple years ago.  Shoot, I think I did write this post, at least in my head if nothing else.  Christmas is hard when you’ve lost someone, especially the first Christmas.  And since her loss was so recent she’s still reeling.  So she does what she must.
  • Holiday Homicide” from Petroville.  This post CRACKED.  ME.  UP.  Mostly because I totally understood how she felt.  Don’t get me wrong, I LOVE lobster.  And fresh lobster is my idea of heaven.  But I wouldn’t want to have to kill the poor things myself.  Seriously?  I love the picture of them in the box, claws raised to the heavens.  Classic.
  • Wishing again that our babies would come with manuals” from Kerflop.  I definitely know where she’s coming from with this one.  I have a son that’s very much the same way about a lot of things.  It’s boggling, it’s frustrating and it’s so sad to watch one of your children struggle with their emotions like this.  I wish there were manuals too.
  • The Story of the Best Christmas EVAH” from misszoot.  I’m so happy she got her whole family there for Christmas this year.  I’ve seen in years past where she’s been sad to have her son away visiting with his father over the holidays and just trying to imagine how hard that would be.  So I lived a little vicariously through her this week as she “SQUEE”‘d with excitement over her best Christmas EVAH.
  • Merry Christmas, Baby, Maybe” from amalah.  Oh god, I hope so.  I have fingers and toes crossed for her.  Let the obsessive refreshing begin!
  • Letter from my son” from sweet | salty.  This was a heartbreaking post from Kate (aren’t a lot of them, come to think of it?).  As I said above, the Christmas season, especially the first, is especially hard.  They may be better off, but what about us?
  • I’m Going To Request That He Change His Birthday To June.  Maybe I’ll Have Money For A Gift” from Boobs, Injuries and Dr. Pepper.  This gal is hysterical.  I love the phone conversation with her mother, particularly the bit about the rubber boobie.

So that’s it for now.  I’m going out of town tomorrow but I will still be scouting for more fabulous posts to feature.  As always, if I’m missing something drop me a line and let me know!

Reeling still, a little bit

I’m sure it’s normal to doubt. I mean, logically, I can look at those pictures and say, “That there is a girl.”  But in my heart I go, “Okay, right, seriously now?” I feel like I’m waiting for the other shoe to drop here.  Sure, I bought an adorable outfit (on clearance!) at Kohl’s yesterday.  But I didn’t buy 10 outfits.  I have no interest in pink car seats or be-flowered strollers.

It seems a little unreal, to be honest.  I feel like it’s “other people” who have girls.  I don’t have girls.  That’s just not how it works around here.  I’m the one who has boys (cute, adorable, edible boys).

It’s silly.  I mean, haven’t I been saying all along that I thought this baby was a girl?  Shouldn’t I be enjoying feelings feelings of vindication instead of nagging doubt?  Gah.  I’m so weird sometimes.

I’m going to do my best to just “go with it”.  When people ask me what I’m having, I’m going to say girl.  I’ll go ahead and plan as though it is a girl.  And it is.  I know it is.  But still.

(the YNTR for this week will be up later; no worries, I haven’t forgotten!)

Girl Gear!

If you’ve been eyeballing my Twitter over there on the top-righthand side, then you saw my staggered announcement around 2pm this afternoon: We are INDEED having a girl!  First off, I was just impressed simply to get a look.  A “beyond a doubt” look too, as it would happen.  See, the sonographer first saw this:

Girl Gear!

Which, I don’t know, I was taking her word for it.  She explained the whole “hamburger” thing to me, and I’d heard it before, but when you’ve already had three boys, you tend to be skeptical.  Still, she was positive.  And I got a little excited.  We got some great pictures of the baby in 3D, like this one:

Cutie Pie

I mean, COME ON, is that adorable?  I know I’m biased and everything but sheesh.  I want to eat this child already.  Still, we asked her if we could have another look at the goods and she was more than happy to comply.  And we got this shot, which made us feel a whole lot better about the “girl” thing:

More Girl Gear

Mostly because, hey, those the “three lines” that everyone is always talking about.  You know, the three lines that we have NEVER seen before.  It was then that I think I truly relaxed about it.

So yeah.  It’s a girl!   Afterward, we stumbled over to Kohl’s (still in shock, mind you), where I’m not embarrassed to tell you that I promptly purchased a wee girly outfit.  Because, DUDE.  It’s time.

If you’d like to see more pictures from the ultrasound, head on over to my flickr where I have the full batch up (at least the ones I captured from the DVD they gave me because I was too lazy to scan the prints they made me).  And if anyone out there is on the fence about whether or not they should get a 3D ultrasound, DO IT.  It’s so worth it and that’s not just the gender talking.  Trust me on this one.

Big day ahead

It is merely 8:30 (I’ve been up for about an hour but that’s neither here nor there), but the day is already stretching like a never-ending parade of consumerism.  This is our “shopping day”.  We got a sizable chunk of Christmas money this year and today is the day we get to spend a good portion of it.  Lest you think we’re the types to walk into a store and just go nuts, I want to let you know we’ve spent the last week compiling a list of wants and needs and paring it down to the bare-bones “must haves” and prioritizing each potential purchase.  We are cheap, remember?  And we want to get the most bang for our buck here.  Plus, we want to save at least half of the money we received.

We’ve done some shopping before now, a little on Wednesday and a little more yesterday.  That was more spending gift cards and the like though (though not all of them quite yet), since our bank put a hold on this deposit for several days since it was rather… ahem… large.

So today we are going to finally purchase our Xbox 360.  This is a purchase we have put off for so long that frankly, I’m quite impressed.  I felt for sure that we would cave in when Halo 3 came out on September 25th.  But we didn’t, we held firm.  And today is finally the day.  The last couple of days we scouted around town for the best deal we could find on the system and game and I think we’ve found a winner.  This way we won’t have to run all around town today pricing things out.  See how efficient we are??  I imagine tonight there will be much playing of Halo 3 going on.

I’m also going to get a vision exam and hopefully FINALLY order my new glasses!  WEE!  I need new glasses so bad it makes the mind boggle.  Every single stinkin’ time I’ve gotten my eyes checked in recent years (and there have only truthfully been a few times) I’ve gone for the contacts instead.  This is because I used to wear contacts all the time and NEVER wore glasses.  And I hate wearing glasses.  I would much rather wear contacts but for some reason, my eyes are just resistant to them anymore and they are never comfortable in my eyes anymore.  BAH.  This time, I’m going to resist.  I’m going to order glasses.  I’ll settle for anything that is remotely comfortable and helps me see better though it’d be a bonus if they’re cute as hell.

I’m getting my haircut done today as well.  It had to be rescheduled from yesterday which was probably for the best but makes today even fuller.  My appointment is at 11am and I’m trying out the salon in Ulta for a change.  I’m excited to see what it’s like and hope I walk away with a fantastic haircut.  I’m hoping for long layers or something of the sort, as I’d like to keep my longish hair.  The other day I picked up some hair dye and a highlighting kit which hopefully Kile will help me do here in the next day or two (before we go to Elko).  I want to get my hair cut first so we can better see where to place the highlights.  Perhaps with the glasses and the new hairdo, I’ll look like a new woman.  Ya think? 🙂

And how can we forget the ultrasound? (1:30pm, PST!!)  I’m trying not to think about it right now.  I’m glad I have so many other things to occupy my mind and keep me distracted today.  I will have my cell phone on me though and will be sure to Twitter any news as soon as I have it.  Shoot, even if there is NO news, I will still Twitter it.  Because that’s just how I roll.

In the meantime, I’m going to go chug some water (want to be all nice and hydrated!), take a shower, and pester my boys about when we’re going to blow this popsicle stand.

OMGWTFBBQ!!

You’ll have to pardon my excitement, I just made my appointment for my FIRST EVER 3D ultrasound!  I’ve always wanted to get one of those done but have never had the extra funds or the ultrasound place in town available to do one.  And now, the planets have aligned and I will be getting an ultrasound.  Tomorrow.  At 1:30pm.

SQUEE!!!

God willing, we’ll get a gender determination too.  This place doesn’t guarantee they’ll be able to find out for you (none of the places here in town do, as far as I can tell) but from their website, I’m guessing they’ll look pretty darn hard for us.  And, at the very least, we should be able to get some really good 3D pictures and I’m way excited to see what this little one looks like.  This could be it, people!  I could be finding out gender TOMORROW.  At 1:30pm!  Pacific standard time!

OMG!

In the meantime, we’re going to go out and run some errands.  I need to get my glucose test done, and today is the best day for that since tomorrow will be otherwise occupied.  I’m also going to try to go get my hair cut at 4pm this afternoon.

I’m so freakin’ excited I can hardly stand it.  In the meantime, tide yourselves over with this belly shot of my 25 week pregnant self (as taken by Harry!):

25 weeks and change
I have no idea why it looks like I have a humpback.

Anti-social

In an email to a family member of his recently, Kile referred to me as “anti-social” and a large reason why we didn’t have people stay at our house very often.  I believe my reaction when I saw that was something like, “!!!”  But you know, he’s right.  To a degree.  It’s not that I don’t enjoy people.  I do.  I love to have friends and hang out and have fun with them.  Some of the best times in recent years have been spent with friends and family and just having a really good time.  However.  That said, sometimes opening yourself up to other people allows yourself to get hurt as well.  As much you like to think it won’t happen, as much as you try to avoid it (perhaps moreso if you try to avoid it), feelings get hurt.  And you’re lucky if those feelings are just your own.  So you get to a point where you feel like it’s somehow EASIER to just shut yourself up in your home and stay with what you know will be constant.  Here are home, with my family, I know that I won’t have the high highs that we enjoy when with friends, but I won’t have the lows either.  I won’t have to worry about it.

I’ve said before that I will bend over backward to avoid confrontation.  That’s essentially what I do when I get anti-social.  I feel singed or nervous about being singed or worry about singing others so I stay home.

But it’s hard on Kile.  He professes to be anti-social just like me, but he likes to have friends and he likes to be out of “the cave” and he likes to entertain on occasion.  He likes to be able to have people over to the house and cook for them, and play the part of the host.  I don’t enjoy that as much as he does, but I do understand that he enjoys it so I try to stuff my own anti-social nature down and go with it.  As much as I enjoyed just having us here for dinner last night, and how calm it was, I felt bad for Kile because I know he likes to entertain people.

So I wasn’t at all surprised when he invited our next door neighbor and her daughter over for pie and coffee after dinner.  Her husband works in a restaurant that happened to be open on Christmas and he had been gone all day.  Was still gone, actually and they had both spent the day pretty much alone.  It’s pretty much a no-brainer, right?  No one should have to sit alone on Christmas.  Kile tried as he might to invite them for dinner, but she demurred.  They did show up for coffee and pie and her daughter proceeded to frustrate Harry by wanting to play “Finding Nemo” on the Xbox instead of “Spider-man 2”, but they played pretty well while we sipped coffee, ate pie and chatted.  We even used our fancy china coffee pot and coffee cups (with saucers!).  And Kile insisted on filling her up a plate full of pie, fudge and cookies to take home for her husband when he finally did get off work.

You know, I’m proud of him.  He’s got such a good heart.  I don’t have near the social skills he does and sometimes his generosity and giving nature just humbles me.  And yes, I do wish he had more opportunity to show others that good nature of his.  Hopefully someday.

Traditions: Don't mess with my Christmas!

It’s funny isn’t it?  We grow up celebrating the holidays one very specific way.  And then we become adults and get married to someone who may or may not have grown up celebrating the holidays in a completely different way.  And we’re expected to just merge our traditions seamlessly and without any complaint.

Yeah. Right.

I grew up with my parents and four other siblings in California.  We didn’t have a lot of extended family close by.  There were some cousins who we may get together with either before or after the holiday for a little get-together but for the most part, Christmas was just us.  My family moved to California from the midwest in the early 70’s, just before I was born.  Since my older siblings were used to spending Christmas with the extended family out in Michigan, my parents felt an urge to make the holiday as special as possible.  So they started a tradition where on Christmas Eve, we would all get dressed up and go out to a late lunch/early dinner at some place that we might not otherwise go to during the rest of the year.  This was always memorable and I can still vividly remember some of the restaurants we ate at on Christmas Eve.  Afterward, we would go to church (I was raised Catholic and Christmas Eve service is just about the most beautiful Mass you could imagine).  On the way home, we would look at Christmas lights and then once home, snack on cookies and fudge and open a gift or two before heading off to bed.  We would open everything else, Santa gifts included, the next morning as soon as everyone was awake.  Then mom would spend the day fixing the dinner which always rivaled Thanksgiving dinner while my dad and brothers would watch football.  Voila.  That, to me, was Christmas.

The first Christmas I was married was the worst one I’d ever had; at least up until that point.  It was about as different from my Christmas as I knew it as you could get. I was used to Christmas Eve being all about the anticipation.  I got to where I counted on it.  Only, that first Christmas away from my parents house I didn’t really realize that.  You know the old saying, you don’t know what you’ve got until it’s gone.  I had high hopes about spending Christmas in Elko that year.  I was actually kind of excited to try something new.  But the fates conspired against us.  Kile and I both were working at the university (I was taking classes still to finish up my degree) and he had yet to start what is the job he has now.  He was set to start shortly before New Years, but for the time being, was still an hourly employee over at the library.  So we both had to work on Christmas Eve.  Being hourly employees, we needed all the money we could get and there weren’t really any “days off”.  We were taking enough days off as it was to go to Elko.  We had just moved into a new two bedroom apartment and I was wanting to try to have a baby.  We needed the money.  So we let for Elko around 3pm on Christmas Eve.

NEVER AGAIN.

I will never again travel anywhere on Christmas Eve.  That year, it completely ruined my holiday. By the time we got to Elko, the day was nearly over.  There was no lunch out, no Christmas Eve Mass, and his family had the tradition of opening all their gifts on Christmas Eve.  Within a couple hours, all the presents were opened and as far as I was concerned, Christmas was over.  The next morning, I woke up feeling distinctly disappointed.  There was a nice dinner that afternoon, but not like what my mom would have made at home.  I found myself incredibly homesick and feeling very sorry for myself.

I’ve loosened up a lot since then.  However, the times we have spent Christmas in Elko since we have insisted on opening the majority of our gifts the next morning.  I’m lucky that Kile feels the way I do, that the anticipation of Christmas morning should be upheld.  As long as you get a present or two the night before, that is. Doing something different isn’t as tragic now as it was then.  But then, I’m used to it by now and I’ve matured as well.  That first year away from your family can be a huge adjustment.

Though it could be easy for me to say.  We’ve adopted more of my family’s Christmas traditions than his.  For instance, last night we went out to an early dinner before heading to a candlelight Christmas service at church.  On the way home, we gawped at Christmas lights before snacking on goodies and watching the boys open a present or two.  But we had a great time, the boys had a great time and that’s what matters, right?

So how do you feel about your Christmas traditions?

Christmas Cookies
Christmas cookies, as decorated by Harry

Christmas Jammies
The boys show off their matching Christmas jammies before bed on Christmas eve

Santa came!
Santa came!

Santa gift
Liam prepares for his future as a hard core rockstar

New bike!
It’s a toss-up as to which he liked more, the bike or the Spider-man 3 game

Carnage
The state of my living room after the tornado passed.

Oh by gosh, by golly

Did I tell you we decided to change Pup’s name?  Yep.  We did.  But come on… “Poptart”?  Seriously?  And then, a couple weeks ago, we were listening to the “All Christmas, All the Time” radio station when the song “Mistletoe and Holly” came on.  You know the one:

Oh by gosh, by golly, it’s time for mistletoe and holly,
Tasty pheasants, Christmas presents,
Countrysides covered with snow.
Oh by gosh, by jingle,
It’s time for carols and Kris Kringle.

Do I need to point out that Beetoe’s given name was “Mistletoe”?  SERIOUSLY.  We needed to name this pup “Holly” and that was that.  Even Harry agreed and seeing as how she’s his dog (technically), he got final say.  He was all for changing her name to Holly.  And it’s not like we’re not going to just keep on calling her Pup.  I mean, the name is stuck by now.  Besides, our pets never retain their given names.  Our first pet, a cat we got while still in college, was named Cheyenne.  Nice, huh?  Yeah, we never called him that.  He was Stinky.  Still is (we don’t have him any longer, my friend does).   Anyhow.  So yeah.  The Pup is now named Holly.  So we have Mistletoe and Holly.  Cute?  I totally think so.  And it doubly works as Pup was born in December and we acquired Beetoe at Christmastime so there.  It was meant to be.

Anyhow.  What I really want to say was Merry Christmas to everyone.  I hope everyone is off right now enjoying their families and feeling the spirit of the season.  And that no one is like my brother who is currently stuck on the tarmac in Minneapolis, hoping his plane takes off in time for him to make his connecting flight to San Jose in Denver.  Which, you know, it totally won’t.  Gah.  I think I’ll go give thanks right now that we’re staying put for the holidays.

You Need to Read – December 22

An early Merry Christmas to everyone out there.  I should be continuing to blog over the holidays, but I know there are people out of town and taking computer holidays so to those of you I wish: May Santa grant your every wish.  And without further ado, here are the posts for this week.  Some fantastic reads in here!

  • “IKEA Jones and the Big Boy Bed of Doom” from Amalah.   Anyone who has a child over the age of three can relate to this one.  Buying your baby their first bed.  It’s a nerve-wracking experience for everyone.  A change for the child and “will they actually sleep in it?” anxiety for mom and dad.  But I have to say: This is one freakin’ cool bed.
  • She’s here!” from What’re you lookin’ at?  YAY!  The post I’ve waited a LONG time to read, Frema’s baby is finally here!  And she’s a big one too!  Though, looking back at the size of poor Frema’s belly, it should come as no surprise.  And I guess it should come as no surprise that that baby was WAY too big to be born the conventional way.  Here’s hoping Frema has a speedy recovery.  I can’t wait to hear how the new family is doing!
  • Unrequieted” from All & Sundry.  This posts makes my heart ache for poor Linda.  I understand where she’s coming from.  My oldest is a daddy’s boy and the second one is shaping up to be much the same.  Oh, they like me well enough, but Papa is aces around here.  He’s the fun guy.  Considering all we do for these little beggars, you think they could be bothered to toss some affection our way, right?
  • I can’t respond to any emails today” from I CAN HAS CHEEZBURGER?  HA!  That’s all I have to say about that.
  • THIS is Christmas” from Absolutely Bananas.  It can be hard to find the real meaning in the season with all the stress and crowds and everything.  But when you do find it, sometimes in the most unlikely of places, you hold onto it.  That’s what makes it all worthwhile.
  • Survivor: New House Island” from Her Bad Mother.  Moving into a new house is hard.  Moving during Christmas-time is harder.  Moving during Christmas-time, in a snow storm is the hardest.  I can’t even fathom the stress.
  • If it were easy, it wouldn’t be called ‘toddler’” from sweet | salty.  I thought this post was awesome.  I’m not as brave to teach a toddler how to ski but reading her account and looking at the pictures makes me want to make the attempt.
  • It’s beginning to look a lot like a nervous breakdown” from Rockstar Mommy.  It’s amazing how children so often don’t see what we do do for them and instead focus on what we don’t do.  They’re lucky we love them, is all I can say.
  • Airplanes, revisited” from Lag Liv. This is a follow-up to her rant against reclining airplane seats.  I’m glad she stuck to her guns on this one and I’m with her all the way.  This is a HUGE pet peeve I have about flying anymore.   Next time: First Class all the way, baby!
  • Aquanet” from Boobs, Injuries and Dr. Pepper.  I am SO. FREAKIN’.  JEALOUS.  She got to go see Trans Siberian Orchestra in concert, something I’ve been really wanting to do.  I swear, next year if they come to town I’m going.  No one can stop me.
  • Now what?” from Dad Gone Mad.  This is the best post I’ve seen so far about the whole Jamie Lynn Spears debacle.  I agree with him completely on all points.  How about you?
  • Is there a mathematical equation for this?” from hola, isabel.  A very good post that takes a hard look at the questions surrounding having more children and when is the best time to take the plunge.  The answer?  There is no “best time” and there is no “perfect number”.  Makes it a bit harder, doesn’t it?

Well folks, that’s all I have for you today.  Hopefully, I’ll have a good edition of YNTR for you next Saturday (I may or may not be going to Elko that day).  I know there won’t be as many posts to choose from though so it may be a rather spare edition.  In the meantime, have a Merry Christmas and enjoy your families!