Monday, November 21, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!

I've been hearing Christmas music at the grocery store since Halloween.  I realize that stores are gearing up for the season, but I'm not feeling the Christmas spirit while I'm looking for costumes that turn my children into zombies.

I like Thanksgiving.  I like getting with family and eating comfort food.  A lot of my friends have been posting what they're thankful for.  I did it for a few days before I forgot - not because I'm not grateful, but because I don't want my gratitude to sound forced.  I am grateful for my family.  I am so fortunate to have three healthy happy children and a fantastic husband. I am also grateful for Amazon.  Shopping for the kids from home is the best Christmas present ever!

The day after Thanksgiving we will go explore the mall and enjoy the decorations.  Then we'll go home and put up our Christmas tree. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The book review that isn't a review.

I'm not big on book reviews.  It feels too much like homework and I spend enough time trying to get my kids to do their homework to have any desire to do it too.  Wreck The Halls is by Jen Yates.  It doesn't have a plot so there isn't anything to review except to say it's funny. It's a great way to offset all the super sweet Christmas stories you'll hear during the holidays about kids that have no money and get presents anyway. 

I often read the blog,, with my kids and they all think it's pretty funny. I have to preview it to make sure there aren't themes I don't want to explain to my young children.  (People should not put balloons or rockets on cakes.  Also, people don't look appetizing with or without clothes. Don't turn them into cakes.  Ew.) The first cake wrecks book was PG-13 and I didn't let my kids read all of it. I thought about waiting until my kids went to bed before I previewed Wreck The Halls but I couldn't wait. 

I tried to hold it in, but I couldn't help it.  I laughed while my seven year-old was in the room.

I gave him a little taste of the book and sent him on his way.

Then came my twelve year-old. His voice is changing so every word he says starts on one octave and ends in another.  There can be three or four octaves in between.  It's always fun to hear what comes out of his mouth. He can do things with his voice I didn't know were humanly possible.

 I was a little tired of the interruptions by the time my daughter came around. 

She disappeared quickly.

Unfortunately, those tactics only work for my daughter.  The boys already knew what I had and they hung around like vultures, waiting for a chance to pounce. (And they like fish.)
I was pleased to see that there wasn't anything in it I didn't want my kids to see so I let them have it.

My twelve year-old nabbed the book first.  He was just about to sit down with it when...

The seven year-old flew out of nowhere, snatched the book from his brother's hands and disappeared into the wastelands (also known as his bedroom.) 

I was laughing too hard to reprimand my seven year-old. It was a pretty impressive move and how can you argue with the albino sprinkle bush of joy? The next day I braved the wastelands to find the book.  It was nestled next to Puppy and Bad Kitty (and dirty clothes, and books, and blankets, and toys, and trash). I rescued the book and put it on the book shelf for everyone to enjoy. 

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Then and Now

My husband and I were reminiscing about our childhoods and realized how different our kids lives are.  For starters, when we had to do research, we went to the library.  Actually, my husband went to the library. He had to ride his bike there and haul all the books home in his backpack.  I didn’t go to the library.  My mom worked there, so I’d call her.

The counter under the phone was never that clean.  Junk is much easier to collect than to draw.

I could never figure out why my mom always said this when we called.  We never called about anything trivial.  It was always super important. (Also I was going to put books on the shelf behind her, but my drawing skills haven’t yet reached that point.  It’s harder than it looks.)

Mom was always late coming home those days.  Then I had to read the book and write a bunch of stuff with a pen.  I never got to bed until really late and was exhausted the next day.

My kids, on the other hand . . .
The best part about drawing instead of real pictures is I can make myself as skinny as I want.

Then they copy and paste the information directly into a document, print it, and have it ready before bedtime.

When we played, we went outside. It was time to go in when Dad yelled my name for the third time. (I was never sure if he was serious until the third call.) 

My kids don't spend as much time outdoors.

They have all the entertainment they need inside.

We had video games too.  They just weren't as colorful.

What color we lacked on the television screen was made up for in the wallpaper and carpet.  The 70s had its own style and flare.

Kids have gotten soft.  They carry cellphones in case of emergency or bad weather.

We had something in case of bad weather too.  It was called a coat.
Please note the shoes.  I did not walk barefoot in the snow for a mile uphill just to get to the mailbox.  That was my parents generation.  They still complain about how tough they had it without flushing toilets or cars. And gas was only 5 cents a gallon. (I'm still not sure what the horses did with 5 cent gas.)