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Tuesday, November 30, 2010

In this house around Christmas…

I am sure that we are not too different from most homes around the holiday season but I felt like chatting about it anyway. In this house around Christmas:

  • there is a lot of anxiety, on my part.
  • at any given moment I will break into tears. Not unhappy, just weepy. I can’t hear a single Christmas song with Night in the title without losing it, which really sucks because if I could hold it together for half a second I would be singing at the top of my lungs. Much preferable to bawling like a moron.
  • my dear hubby and I go round and round about how it is not about the stuff.
  • I have a hard time transforming my home into a Christmas wonderland. If really lucky we will get the tree up before the 20th!
  • it smells like heaven. I love to bake. To me, this means anything that cooks in the oven. I refuse to limit my “I love to bake” statement to sweets. Breads, slow roasted meats, and buttery potato dishes get thrown right in along with the goodies. The only thing I don’t make are sugar cookies. They are dumb. Weird of me to say that huh? I am sure it would be a blast to decorate them, then what? They aren’t really that good.
  • I get lonely.
  • a lot of time is spent in our pajamas.
  • we are constantly in a conflict of traditions. My hubby’s family did things differently than mine did and it is always brought up. It is for this fact that I get stuck with most things. I get to shop, wrap, cook, make sure Santa finds us, arrange for photos (if I feel like it), address all cards, and tend to all things that involve the “Holiday Spirit”. And why not? I am a stay at home mom, with all the time in the world. Well, I think as Christmas coordinator for this house it would be a lot more like a family holiday if the entire family were in attendance. So there. Besides, it is exhausting.
  • we do not buy into the hype. We can agree on one thing, all of the extra “traditions” that were either created by Hallmark or passed down in a culture we do not belong to are left out of the mix. We do not celebrate St. Nicolas’ day, there is no elf on my shelf, and even though we had one as a kid an advent calendar has not yet found its way into our home.  
  • I often find myself overwhelmed.
  • I am lucky enough to have a spouse that will chip in when it comes to dire straights. That is the decorating. If he didn’t do it it would not get done.
  • my only wish is to create memories that will stand the test of time.

Here enjoy a picture of the rug rats taken last year:


Ok, maybe it is just a little bit about the stuff. Or maybe it is the selfish satisfaction of pleasing my beasts.

Bottom line is that there is a big picture, the main reason we are celebrating. Whatever your beliefs. For me the reason is Christmas, it is what we are celebrating. I refuse to send out “holiday” cards. My Christmas cards will always say Merry Christmas! It took a dear friend of mine, who happens to be Jewish, to point out that it is what it is and her cards always wish us a Happy Hanukkah, and I love that. 

Here’s to hoping everyone is enjoying the season!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

It will all be ok. It will all be ok. It will all be ok.

Trying out my new mantra.

Usually I chant “this too shall pass” but I thought I would change it up.

What a weekend! Holy moley, it’s a wonder we survived! It started Friday. My dear hubbs was home sick with a stomach virus. When I was a kid this was the flu wasn’t it? Anyway, he was ill. Then around dinner time I got sick. I prayed for the Good Lord to leave me on Earth for just a little longer, I thought sure I was going to die. I got plenty of rest Saturday and around 2:00 the baby started vomiting. Shit. This beast swept through my home so fast we didn’t know what hit us. Between projectile vomiting and butt pee we were all in a world of hurt. For exactly 12 hours. Ugh.

So after the sick had moved through I felt the need to disinfect. Everything. Not kidding. I even washed the walls in the foyer. I did something like 6 loads of laundry including all the sheets and towels. Then it happened. As if this weekend didn’t suck hard enough it happened. This was a grade A, class 1, mother of all laundry disasters. It was a red crayon.

I had no experience with this corner of hell so immediately I started to cry. Then the yelling happened. I blamed my son, I blamed myself, I threw a tantrum. Then I left, got in the car and drove up the street to Wal-mart. I had called for reinforcements on the way, both my Mom and my Mother-in Law had advice, and I went seeking answers in the same germ pit we probably cought the virus. I was told WD-40 was my answer. Then I fought with dear hubbs because it didn’t work. He had told me to get Goof-Off (?) and I didn’t so it was an “I told you so” moment for him which I retaliated with screaming.

My family abandoned me down there in the laundry room, which is what I deserved (really can you blame them?) and I was left to scrub. As my wimpy arms burned and the tears fell, I worked. I scrubbed that cursed dryer drum with the only friend who will never fail me. The Magic Eraser. It worked! No fumes, no mess, just some elbow grease and a little white sponge.

So I scrubbed. After about an hour I deemed it clean enough and I moved on to the clothes. Oh the clothes! More crying. I used (liberally) the set in stain treatment by Spray-N-Wash. Ta-Da! All but maybe one or two items survived. All in all a success.     


(If you didn’t read the story you are probably thoroughly grossed out by this pic. Read. Please. It is NOT what you think!) 


Now if I were an expert blogger and master photographer I would have documented the entire painful process for you. Sorry. This is the only evidence I have left of the carnage that consumed my Monday evening. Honestly this is it. Well, maybe the mental scarring that my children sustained will last a little while longer but I am confident they will eventually be fine too.

Moral to this story? Hell, I forget. It’s been a looong weekend. I will, however, be checking and double checking every pocket from now on. ‘Till death do us part.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

I have a couple things to say:

One:  There is a certain etiquette everyone should follow when attending a craft/art show/fair/bazaar. Even those of you who frequent flea markets and garage sales would benefit from this list. Thrift stores are excluded, you can be as rude as you want, the people who actually owned the stuff are no where around.

  • Do not walk by another persons wares and comment on how easily it would be for you to duplicate them. Really? Why don’t you then. Buy one as a pattern then make your millions. See if I care.
  • Refrain yourself from making comments like “oh, I have seen like 17 of those today”. Whether this is referring to the template on the business cards, the table decorations, or the Acura in the parking lot. No body cares. We all know there are 27 vendors with the same loop-d-loop hair bows! 
  • Lets use a little common sense. As you walk past Bobby Sue’s booth and hold up her wares as a means of getting your BFF’s attention so you can both crack up at how tacky they are remember that to you it is a blue and yellow crochet rooster that slips over your toaster as a means of decoration. To Bobby Sue it is her trade, it probably took hours to make, she is proud enough to sell it in public, and she probably truly likes them.
  • There is a time and a place for bartering. If you see me at the flea market and I am hocking hub caps, by all means haggle. If I am at a craft bazaar and I am selling hand knitted baby blankets there is no amount of sighing, hem hawing, or smooth talking that will make me lower the price of my little pretties. 
  • Just to be polite: Bring cash, carry your own tote, and for God’s sake smile once in a while.

Which brings me to…

Two:  I fear I have lost my Mojo. I am a flirt. I flirt with everyone. Always have, no one is safe. I don’t even really look at it as flirting, maybe just kidding around, ice breakers, friendliness. I bartended and worked in restaurants for 16 years. You learn real fast that kindness means money. That sort of thing sticks and I actually enjoy smiling in traffic, striking up conversation in line for the grocery check-out, or waving at a perfect stranger. Until now.

Follow me here. I was set to make a left turn into a busy four lane road with a turn lane down the middle. There was a car in the turn lane getting ready to head my way. You follow? This road is relentless and if you don’t take the opportunity to turn when it presents itself you may be waiting for quite a while. Like forever. Not a turn for the timid. Now granted I may have crazy hair at times, today I was actually feeling kind of cute, a real rarity lately. The guy in the car waiting to turn was in no way “my type”. Actually he was too old, too hairy, and kind of weird. I smiled at him. To be nice. We were both in the same boat right? HE would have to turn first if I was to get my turn so I was looking for his hole in traffic. I saw it and motioned the all clear. “Come on wanna be biker in your ‘92 Tercel! It’s your turn!”. He turns and I give a little smile and a slight wave to say “have a nice day, wish me luck”. As he drives by, and trust me I am VERY good at reading lips, I see his surly mouth form the sentence “what the f*#k is yer problem?!”.

I am stunned. Why didn’t he smile? Wink? What did I do wrong? Granted, I have never been a hottie, but usually I can get a smile by giving one! Then it hit me. I have lost it. I am too old to be flirting with random strangers. This ruined my week. I had to put on make up just to walk my kiddo to the bus stop. I am not that kind of girl!!!

Hopefully it was just this one asshole having a bad day. Maybe he hates his Mom. Maybe his wife just told him she has Syphilis. I hope I figure this out before I embarrass myself too many more times.

Time to work my pathetic size 12, mother of two butt into a pair of my hubby’s jammie pants so I can breathe while I sleep.


Unhottie of the Crafty Clan

Friday, November 12, 2010

What was I thinking?!

I have been really slacking in the blog and Etsy department. I have instead been FREAKING OUT over this coming weekend. I have committed to doing a fundraiser craft fair at one of the local high schools on Saturday and on Sunday I will be a vendor in the STL Mom’s Boutique Show. YIKES!

I think I will blame my hubby for this brilliant idea. After all, his main compliment when I make anything is “you should sell these”. I just hope someone else shares his enthusiasm.

My only saving grace is that my wonderful Mom, who is also a wonderful artist and who has been a professional crafter all my life will be with me. We decided to do both shows together. She will have some hand painted items, her art work, and some of her greeting card prints. I will be bringing some glass bead bracelets, some of my Hot Patches, and my coin purses and hand bags. I am very nervous and am getting pretty excited.

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The light is getting closer!

The light at the end of this tunnel, I mean. I should probably mention that this fact is both terrifying and wonderful at the same time.

Yesterday my son had his last LP with chemo. He was diagnosed with ALL (Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia) on September 28, 2007. He has been in treatment ever since. For the past three years, every three months (and much more frequently than that in the beginning), he has to go and endure this simple but horrifying procedure. Yesterday was the last one. Goodbye nigh-night medicine, goodbye needles in his back, goodbye poison in his spine.

First I heave a great sigh of relief, the second breath I will hold. It is both fantastic and scary. Bittersweet for me since I am a creature of habit. I will no longer see an entire department of hospital who have taken great care with my son, shared their lives, made us friends. I know their children’s names, their husband’s occupations, and have visited with these wonderful people for hours on end. They were there when I had questions, gave pats of encouragement when I had fear, and did I mention they adore my son and have always taken awesome care of him? I will miss the APC gang because I am happy to report we will not be back.

On a totally related yet completely random note… The wonderful people in the APC did me another favor! The first time time they had to finish off a loose tooth was a couple months ago. This time it was a big one!




Monday, November 1, 2010

Peer pressure

Alright. Since everyone else is doing it I will post Halloween pics too. Enjoy!

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Can’t really beat family time at the pumpkin patch! Is there anything better than giant tire swings and swimming in corn?! Looks like Daddy is in a pumpkin picking daze, really he was wandering around waiting for his pumpkin to pick him.




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I always just use kitchen knives and a hand drawn “classic” face. This was the first year that I bought carving tools and stencils. It was really fun and after I drew them on the boys actually cut out their own faces.



Everything started with the swords!

Hope everyone had a Happy Halloween!!!