Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Sweetheart's Dinner

We loved with a love that was more than love. ~Edgar Allan Poe

Lest you think I am a bah humbugger about Valentine's Day, here is proof I am not. Last night we had a lovely dinner with our little brood. The Fab Five. We had a wonderful dinner with some of everyone's favorites, real china, candles, and lots of laughs. We called it the Sweetheart's Dinner, and it really was... yep, sweet. Each boy had a small gift, wrapped, and a handmade by mom-valentine at their place. (the cards even had a made up poem for each boy the back.) I think my favorite part was going around and telling each one, including my Micah, something I LOVE about them. When he asked them to return the favor, Hadji's responses had me wanting to cry one minute, and laugh the next. Typical. Here are some pics. I put the camera down at dinner. I didn't want to spend Valentine's dinner coaxing proper smiles. It was a good decision.

These are the doilies we painted and strung from the chandilier. I loved this. Loved that my boys all had SO much fun painting them. Loved how festive it made the dining room look. Loved sitting at the table looking at them turning as we laughed,ate, and made a memory. Plus, no one burped, hit, or used utensils as weapons at dinner. They must be magic doilies.I may never take them down.

This... Oh my word. Alden got his stool and gave the cupcakes a talking to. "Pupcakes, we gonna fwost you and EAT you!"

I think he felt bad, he gave them a goodbye kiss.

But he was still going to enjoy eating them anyway.

The Poor Cupcakes. Decorated by small hands, lots of love and spit went into those sprinkle decorations.

That is how we celebrated Valentine's Day with the wild boys. I love those knuckleheads.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Going Retro...

It is February 14th. That means Valentine's Day. Lest you think this will launch into a narrative about my husband, and be some sentimental post about our love, well... it's not. I am here to ask... What gives with the kids Valentines?
When I was growing up, you decorated an envelope, or a large can if the room mother ate enough beans and corn, and decorated it. That was hung or sat on your desk, and at the appointed time, classmates dropped in little notes of sweetness, and in some cases, puppy love. I remember distinctly agonizing in the first grade over which card to give a certain boy. I graduated with that boy and I bet he never knew the 7yr old torture I went through. Anyway... cards in a bucket. If you were lucky there were a few scratch n' sniff ones. (see above photo)Then we had cupcakes, juice, and maybe some chips. Done. Happy Valentine's Day.
Now? Now guess what we get? Goody Bags filled to overflowing with candy, party favors, pencils, and more. Huh? I thought we sent Valentine CARDS. I have caved to the pressure in years past and given the boys lollipops to hand out with the cards. This year though, I was in Target and was overwhelmed at the packaging and card "plus" items available. Oh, you can give a spiderman card... and a small gift. I decided...enough. We would set the new-old trend... Valentine CARDS.
At home that night I realized though... we are being cheated. Where in the hades are the little white envelopes? They are no longer around! We are forced to fold over the cards and close them with heart stickers that are about as sticky as say... oil. LAME. No wonder these moms are sending all this crap... BRING BACK THE LITTLE WHITE ENVELOPES! Kids write the names on them, perhaps add a sticker or drawing. Then we can all rest easy, stop giving away starbucks gift cards and iPod shuffles with each Valentine, and get back to being... well, normal.
The point of Valentine's Day is, wait for it... THE VALENTINES!!!
That is it. Little white envelopes would make me happy. For today... ;)
I leave you with a relic of the cards I sent as a child...

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

Me and my BFF, Lysol

I am not a mom who complains when her kids are sick. Until now. It started with Hadji, almost three weeks ago. The flu. We stayed home from church, school, birthday parties, and all other activities. He got better, and then... Alden got it. Not the flu, but some disastrous stomach bug that allowed for some violent toilet time. Yes, there it is, I said it. Violent, I tell ya'.
Now, it is Lincoln's turn. We went to church, because he was merely sneezing. I thought it was my fault for adding a chicken feather down throw pillow to his bed ensemble. Apparently not. And I hate that, because it is a huge pet peeve when people bring sick kids out. If your child is sick, stay home. Period. End of story.
So, we are now on week three of cabin fever, I mean, patient care. If my butt hits a chair, someone, somewhere, in this home, will need something. A tissue, a puke bucket, a sip of sprite, a video started, a snack, a new pillow, a new game, a toy, a book, a blanket, a brother removed, or something... In short, I am sick of being needed so much.
How does one remember to be loving and consciously make taking care of others, a pleasure? (1st Corinthians 10:31) Well, it is not by waiting and then snapping at your sick spouse when he wants some crackers. Not that I know that from say, personal experience or anything. Not that I may have begrudgingly made him some food while mine got cold and gotten all snarky and self righteous about it. Not me. Well... eh, maybe it was... I had to re-group.

Mom's Sanity Remedies:
1. Pray. Pray hard.
2. Remember how nice it was when your mom took care of you when you were sick? Do it.
3. Your child does not want to be sick, they didn't plan to drag it out, passing it along carefully amongst themselves through the weeks. Don't treat them like are doing so on purpose. (even though it may feel that way at times!)

4. Have at least four games of Words with Friends going at any given time. Trying to use that Q can be a great distraction.
5. Hot tea. Drink lots of hot tea. Scalding even. A burnt tongue is less likely to snap at sick children. I am on my second pot today, fyi. Just kidding. Sort of.

6. Try and get out of the house, even if it is just to the grocery store. Seeing other humans, that can make you feel less savage like when you re-enter the jungle of germs.
7. Lysol. Then Lysol again.

8. Allow yourself some drama. Crying out ala Mommy Dearest, "I SAID NO MORE TISSUES ON THE FLOOR!" really did make me feel better. My children looked up from their electronic daze and noted me with little concern. Maybe I play the Joan Crawford No-More-Wire-Hangers card too often???
9. Finds lots of amazing DIY projects and crafts online, and then relish in the legit excuse of your sick children for why you do not dye your own felt with vegetable juices.
10. For the love of all that is holy, do NOT even think about the fact that you are once again, missing date night AND the PECAN CRUSTED TROUT WITH BOURBON GLAZE! I may call and plead my case for take out...

Oh, make sure your self portraits document your tylenol laden journey. (even if you are wearing your old man sweater and have no make up on. Click it.)

Until then, I leave you to go bleach something... or someone...