Archive | December, 2010

Nine has always been my favorite number

29 Dec

Goose is 9.  Nine.  It’s a little difficult to wrap my head around. 

This year for Christmas, Goose had a baby doll at the top of her list—at the very top with the multiple stars and underlines.  A baby doll.  My first inclination was to skip to number two on her list.  I mean, doesn’t nine seem just a little old for a baby doll?  And she hasn’t shown any real interest in baby dolls in years and years.  I think the last time she got anything baby doll related was when she was two or maybe three.  So I had just about talked myself into going with what I thought was a more age appropriate gift when it suddenly hit me.  Wait.  If the girl wants a baby doll, why not give her a baby doll?  She’s nine, for crying out loud.  Why am I in such a hurry for her to grow up?

She got the doll.  And she loves it.  And seeing her watching tv with it on her lap or tucking it into her bed at night reminds me that this is who Goose is.  She’s a nurturer.  She’s loving.  She’s maternal (her siblings call it bossy, but this is a birthday post celebrating her finer qualities, so we’re going with maternal).  She likes to take care of people.  And she’s managed to stay in the stage of childhood where she is not altogether naive, but still innocent and hopeful and unjaded, I guess.  And for that, I am very grateful.

Right now, Goose would say her two favorite books are Bridge to Terabithia and Where the Red Fern Grows.  I mentioned how sad these books both are, and she was quick to point out the good and inspiring messages—how Jess learns to accept who he is and his circumstances in life and develops closer relationships with his family, and then there was something else about a fern (I can’t remember what she said exactly and I’ve never actually read Where the Red Fern Grows).  Anyway, the point being that while some might see a nine-year-old with a doll and think she is still stuck in a younger-than-her-years-should-indicate mindset, she is actually quite insightful and mature.

And don’t forget awesome, as she would say.  Goose is awesome.  And although there have been more than a few times we’ve butted heads and I’ve wished for our road together to be a little less bumpy, I’m very glad for who she is. 

 

 I love you, Goose.  Happy birthday!

The reason for the season

21 Dec

Bythelbs is sewing again.

Me: Argh!  Is it OK to say bad words when you’re making baby Jesus’s?

Mr. T:  Is it OK to say bad words when you’re not making baby Jesus’s?

Darn him.  Mr. T, not Jesus. 

BTW, how do you pluralize Jesus?  Jesus’s?  Jesuses?  You can’t pluralize Jesus because there’s only one Jesus?

In honor of the close of my 37th year

9 Dec

3.7 things I crossed off the bucket list this year.

 
1. Sew triangle bandages.  This goes on the list because presumably, if you’ve crossed it off the list, you never have to do it again.

2. Hit on a panhandler.  Again, a memorable experience, but once is enough.

3. Get arrested by a clown.  This one gets a checkmark and a star.

.7  Bask in my glorious accomplishment.  I hope I continue to have such opportunities.  And I hope to continue sharing them with you.  Thanks for your friendship and support.  Who needs birthday wishes* when I have all of you?

xoxo
Bythelbs

*as in, blow-out-the-candle wishes–I got plenty of birthday well wishes!

In which I A my Qs

6 Dec

Question the first: What do you want for Christmas? (And none of this world peace-lose 30 pounds-kids who don’t fight crap.  Something that can be actually purchased because, after all, that’s what Christmas is all about. JK.)

A: Photography classes.  Chuck got me a big, fancy camera for our anniversary, and I’ve been reading books about it and using it a little, but I think a few photography classes would help.

2. How likely is it you will get what you want?

A: Not likely.  I don’t know when I would take them.  Our family plate is currently fuller than Uncle Larry’s tray at the all-you-can-eat Jumbo Buffet.

3. Would you have to buy it yourself?  Or specifically and explicitly request it from someone?

A: In this case, I would definitely have to buy them myself.

4. Do you and your spouse and/or significant other traditionally exchange gifts? (Bonus follow up question: Do you have a spouse and a significant other?)

A: Yes, though occasionally we confine our gifts to stocking stuffers when we’ve bought a big family gift or something. (Bonus: I have many significant others, including all of you, of course.)

5. Are these gifts ever surprises?  Or have you provided each other with specific and explicit lists?

A: Chuck has managed to surprise me on occasion.  We don’t often make lists, per se, but we will casually mention something or make suggestions to each other.  I’m not against the listing/suggesting.  The surprise factor doesn’t make or break my holiday, though it is occasionally nice.  As long as it’s a good surprise. 

5 1/2. Do you ever think “If I have to provide such specific instruction, I may as well just buy my own ding-dang gift?”

A: Sometimes.  A couple of years I made wish lists on Amazon, and I ended up getting everything on the list–nothing less, nothing more–which was nice, I guess, except it seemed kind of like cheating that all he had to do was hit the “add to cart” button and call it good.  Occasionally, I like to pretend there is some extra thought involved.

6. Has your spouse and/or significant other ever purchased him/herself  his/her own gift and then suggested you wrap it up and put it under the tree?

A: Chuck does this all the time.  Suggests it, I mean.  I’ve never been able to see the point of wrapping up a gift when you both already know what it is.  My wrapping time is precious, people.  Precious!  I don’t need to be spending an extra 20 minutes on the mister’s self-purchased presents just so he can feign surprise the next day.  For whose sake is this performance anyway?  The children’s?  Because I don’t think they give a (insert something whimsically insignificant and not too offensive here), do you?

7. Do you find this completely pointless and/or irritating?

A:  First, I’d like to thank all of you who assumed I was talking about the survey and answered in the negative.  That was very kind of you.  But I was actually talking about the suggestion to wrap presents your spouse purchased for themselves.  And in case you couldn’t tell from my last response, yes, I find it completely pointless and/or irritating.  Mostly and.

8. What is the best Christmas present you have ever received?

A: A clean bathroom on Christmas Eve.  Yes, I know this is dangerously close to falling under that world peace/lose 20 lbs crap category, but truly, I cannot think of a more appreciated gift.  I’m pretty sure I can count on one woodshop teacher’s hand the number of times Chuck has cleaned our bathroom since we’ve been married, so this was a big freaking deal.  (BTW, he does plenty of other household chores, just not bathrooms, in case you were getting some bunching action in the pantal region.)

9. Was it a surprise or did you purchase it yourself?

A: A total surprise.  A Christmas miracle, if you will, and like most miracles, was never to be repeated.  Yet.  Though I would gladly have paid for it, too.

9 3/4. What is the worst Christmas present you have ever received? (And none of that it’s-the-thought-that-counts junk.)

A: Wild Hogs on DVD. Previously viewed.  What.  The.  Frick.  I’m pretty sure it’s safe to assume there was no thought beyond, “Oh crap! It’s Christmas!”  At least I certainly hope not.  Because if there was some actual thought involved and that’s what he came up with…  (He has since apologized.  Numerous times.)

10. Do you have any traditional gifts? (e.g., every year my kids get a toothbrush in their stocking, a new calendar and a book. Every year.)

A: The toothbrushes are a carry over tradition from my childhood.  Every year we got an apple in the toe, an orange in the heel, mixed nuts in their shells and a toothbrush.  Stocking filler.  We knew it.  My mom knew it.  But it was tradition.  I think we also got some candy and a couple other thisses and thats, but I have zero recollection of any specific items other than the apple, orange, nuts and toothbrush.  Our kids also usually get pajamas and an ornament, and Chuck usually gets pistachios (shelled).

Christmas Q&A

3 Dec

You provide the A.

Question the first: What do you want for Christmas? (And none of this world peace-lose 30 pounds-kids who don’t fight crap.  Something that can be actually purchased because, after all, that’s what Christmas is all about. JK.)

2. How likely is it you will get what you want?

3. Would you have to buy it yourself?  Or specifically and explicitly request it from someone?

4. Do you and your spouse and/or significant other traditionally exchange gifts? (Bonus follow up question: Do you have a spouse and a significant other?)

5. Are these gifts ever surprises?  Or have you provided each other with specific and explicit lists?

5 1/2. Do you ever think “If I have to provide such specific instruction, I may as well just buy my own ding-dang gift?”

6. Has your spouse and/or significant other ever purchased him/herself  his/her own gift and then suggested you wrap it up and put it under the tree?

7. Do you find this completely pointless and/or irritating?

8. What is the best Christmas present you have ever received?

9. Was it a surprise or did you purchase it yourself?

9 3/4. What is the worst Christmas present you have ever received? (And none of that it’s-the-thought-that-counts junk.)

10. Do you have any traditional gifts? (e.g., every year my kids get a toothbrush in their stocking, a new calendar and a book. Every year.)

I want to know!