Friday, December 28, 2012

We Wish You For a Merry Christmas

 That is how Phoebe sings the song anyway: "We wish you for a Merry Christmas..." On Christmas Eve, we went to a brunch with friends. Our kids performed the Nativity; Phoebe was an angel (really) and Bruce was a wide man (of course).
 Once again, you wonder why our Christmas card hasn't reached your mailbox. I'm thinking a New Year's or Valentine's Day card for this year, perhaps something worthy of Awkward Family Photos.
 After our brunch, we went to see the Nutcracker. Phoebe has been very interested in all things ballet/pink/beautiful, and a friend of ours was dancing in it. I was worried she would get bored (it's nearly three hours long), but she sat on my lap and kept a whispering commentary about the mice and the nutcracker and the naughty boys who try to steal the nutcracker. She also moved her arms and tried to dance from my lap. She was into it until the final 20 minutes, when exhaustion finally took over and she fell asleep. Surprisingly, Bruce was interested too; he kept pointing out music that he had heard in music class or on a toy or a ringtone. I thought we had taken a picture before the Nutcracker, but it must have been a mental one; above is my closest shot, Phoebe is eating a cupcake at an eatery by the theater.
After the Nutcracker, we headed to our second party of the day: more friends and more Nativity. This time, Phoebe played Mary and Bruce was a shepherd (that would be him in the upper left corner doing a ninja pose). Phoebe was quite serious for most of the play until the shepherds came along. "That's enough," she said after a bit too much praise from Bruce and company.
 Christmas Day turned out better than expected. One of Scott's coworkers switched shifts at the last minute; Scott will have to work New Year's Day, but got out of an evening Christmas Eve shift. I think we got the better end of that deal. Scott got to sleep at night in his own bed (yea!) and we didn't start present-opening until 7 a.m. I baked blueberry muffins, we ate, then the kids got down to business. Bruce opened a Lego set, took it to his room, and disappeared for an hour. Phoebe opened her dollhouse and played with it for an hour before moving on to the next present.
 We were all very spoiled this year. Scott got me some dishes, I got him an awesome flannel shirt that he has worn night and day ever since (atop scrubs, no less), Bruce got lots of Legos, and Phoebe got all kinds of doll-related stuff.
 We have been dog-sitting Gatsby for the past week. Most of the time, he is like a cat: hangs around the house, sleeps, eats, doesn't do tricks. The kids are good with him and he is very patient with them. He has some food issues; if he was a person, I'd diagnose him with disordered eating and send him to rehab. He always tries to eat whatever is lying on the sidewalk when we walk him. A few days ago I wrestled a stale piece of naan from his mouth. Yesterday he got a bite-sized piece of poo from another dog. Today he chomped something sizable so fast that I didn't see what it was. Tonight he threw up chunks, then started to lick them up and eat them. It was so gross that I couldn't intervene; Scott emerged and cleaned up the mess. He told me that's what he does at the hospital all the time and that I just need to re-access my thinking about what's gross. I have reaccessed and have decided that dogs are gross. I am no longer indecisive about wanting a dog: I definitely do not want a dog.
Scott has been working the night shifts all week (except Christmas Eve by some miracle), so when he comes home in the morning he is ready to sleep for a few hours. If you've been to our condo, you know the walls are thin and the kids are loud, so we can't be in the house when he's trying to sleep. We have been spending the mornings out and about, passing time in spaces like McDonald's and friend's houses. Tonight is his last night shift, and then he resumes normal sleep patterns again. Hallelujah!

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Cheering on the Crimson Tide

 Every month or so, Harvard invites residents of the community to a free sporting event. We decided to check out a basketball game. The kids weren't very interested in the basketball...
 ...but they were interested in popcorn. It also helped that Bruce saw a friend from school and hung out with him, and Phoebe saw a friend from church and hung out with him.

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Happy Birthday to Me

 After last year's epically disastrous birthday, I was convinced that this one was going to be much, much better. And it was. Scott had the day off and put together a surprise birthday party for me. A few friends came over, sang the birthday song, and ate some really awesome cake that I didn't have to make. That would be me in my jammies blowing out a bunch of candles (we didn't have enough candles; does that mean it's already time to start lying about my age?).
Even better, I had breakfast in bed complete with waffles from my new wafflemaker. We had an awesome Belgian wafflemaker for a few years; I got it for Scott as an anniversary gift a few years ago, and it finally gave up the ghost a few weeks ago. I was super-sad about it (*see backstory below), so Scott got me a new one.

* On our wedding night, we stayed at a hotel that had a make-your-own waffle breakfast bar with one of those cool rotating wafflemakers. The next day at the wedding reception, somebody asked how how our hotel was - you know, the winking, ha-ha-you-newlyweds kind of asking. While I blushed, Scott didn't even hesitate: "The waffles were amazing."

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Saturday, December 15, 2012

All I Want for Christmas

The kids have lengthy wish lists this year. Bruce has been listing every Lego set ever made along with a few random items like "microscope" and "Pokemon cards." He has a very specific list. Phoebe, on the other hand, wants things like "dolls" (it doesn't matter what brand), "a robot" (not sure why she says that because we already have one), and will take anything pink. Her list is more ambiguous, which makes me think she will be happy with just about anything wrapped in brightly colored paper.

This year Christmas morning will be a little unusual. Scott works nights the week of Christmas, so he will roll in after a sleepless night around 8 a.m. We will probably open our stockings then, and open one present; I'll pick one that can occupy the kids quietly for a few hours while Scott sleeps. Our gift-opening will come sometime in the afternoon, followed by Christmas dinner and then Scott going back to work.

To add to the excitement, we are dog-sitting for almost two weeks. Scott really wants a dog and I'm not so sure I want to take care of a dog, so this should at least lean us farther to one side or the other of our/my indecision. I don't like the idea of handling warm squishy dog poo in a plastic baggie, but I'm hoping the overall cuteness and cuddliness of the dog makes up for it. We shall see.

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Wednesday, December 12, 2012

O Christmas Tree

We have had this $15 drug store tree for a few years. The top third of it is tied to the bottom of the tree and leans a little. I have a bunch of Sesame Street ornaments and lights from my childhood that grace the tree along with an eclectic mix of other items. The kids found a few ornaments in a box of free stuff on the sidewalk. There are a few preschool creations from Bruce and Phoebe. Running medals and any toy with a loop now hang on the tree.

I love our mismatched tree. The kids redecorate it every day so there is always something new on it.

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