This is Steve. Steve does not like the winter. Steve does not like the cold. Steve does not like the snow. Steve does not like to shovel. Steve does not like to snow blow his elderly neighbor's driveway. Steve does not like the big pile of winter boots and hats and mittens at the back door.
Steve has an awesome hat with a big yellow pom pom on top. Steve needs to remember to be thankful that he gets to wear such a fabulous hat.
Steve has decided that he wants us to celebrate Hanukkah this year. Something about the way Christmas has been perverted. And it's origins. I'll spare you the details. So anyway, after quite a bit of whining and moaning on my part about all the magical trees twinkling in the pagans' windows, I've decided that resistance is futile and perhaps it is not my place to change his mind about something he is obviously convicted about. So Hanukkah it is.
My initial concern with this idea was the thought of giving each of our four girlies a gift on each of the 8 days of the celebration. Frankly, our budget (I use the term very loosely) doesn't have room for 32 gifts. Last year they got pajamas and toothbrushes. But after a bit of thought and some lucky finds at our local Goodwill, I've come up with a rough draft for our gift giving and family time. These days are in no particular order.
Day 1. Art night. I found several unused coloring/activity/drawing books at the Goodwill. I will also break out some new crayons and markers that I stockpiled during the fabulous back to school sales and we will ALL sit around the table together being farty arty.
Day 2. Fun with Magnets. I found some magnet "wands" and quite a few other magnet-y things at our local teacher store. I may fill a tub with rice or peas and let them "search" for the hidden magnetic objects with their wands, though I foresee lots of arguing during this activity.
Day 3. Boring necessity night. Socks. ????? Activity.....sock fights. You know......stuff one sock into the other and whap everyone with your weapon as hard as you can. I guarantee this activity will end in tears.
Day 4. Book Reading night. I almost peed my pants after finding several like new small American Girl books at the Goodwill for $.49!!! We have been checking these out at the library and I LOVE how there is a little history lesson related to the story at the back of each book. I picked up several other age appropriate books for the girls, so we will spend the evening cuddled up on the futon mattress in front of a crackling fire.
Day 5. Movie night. A family gift of Kung Fu Panda and popcorn.
Day 6. The "real" gift. Puppets for all. I splurged at my new favorite store, Explorations, and got each of the girls their own Melissa and Doug puppet. Good stuff. So I'm guessing they'll spend this night crowded behind the couch putting on puppet shows for us.
Day 7. Play dough night. Homemade play dough. Pick your own color. Note to self: pick up lots of cream of tartar.
Day 8. Game night. Still trying to decide what family game to buy. Any suggestions for players aged 2-33?
I realize the holidays aren't all about gift-giving, so rest assured that we will be reading and discussing the true meaning of Hanukkah. And Christmas.
I am slowly becoming more and more excited about our first Hanukkah and am optimistic that we will find some new traditions that will become a meaningful part of our family history. I'd also love to hear any of your favorite holiday traditions.......?????
So basically, this one is all about how I joined a holiday weight loss challenge on Friday over at Diet Cake (so sorry...too late to join) so I could impress the amazing Amy Lawson with my trash talk and win "dozens of dollars" and maybe an empty package of Egyptian cigarettes, and how I then proceeded to spend my weekend baking sugar cookies, eating a few too many pieces of Papa Murphy's pizza, going out to Culver's after church with some friends and gorging myself on a delightful medley of cheesy chips and my own blueberry cheesecake dessert at last night's Christmas party. Go me!
HOWEVER, that 5th non-diet Coke I passed up Saturday night during my poker reign and my dedication to the Culver's kid's meal have left me a surprising 1.5 pounds LIGHTER.....with my tank top ON. Who knew the key to successful weight loss was 4 Cokes and a Culver's kid's meal!? ;)
Watch out world! Here I come.
Oh never mind. It just occurred to me that the missing 1.5 pounds could very well have been "snot weight," as I have been blowing my nose pretty much non-stop.
Three nights ago Gwen crawled into bed with us crying about a lion that had just pinched her booty. Though we are not generally proponents of co-sleeping, Steve and I were both very tired and very aware that our baby is growing up much too fast. So we snuggled her up between us, protecting her from that nasty booty pinching lion, and soaked in the rare sweetness of a calm and peaceful Gwen.
That booty pinching lion must be unable to resist Gwen's perfect little bum, because she has sought the protection of our bed every night since. (Actually, he visits early in the morning......just before sunrise.)
This is the groggy conversation we had early this morning.
G: Can we go to the pool?
G: (Leans over, places both of her hands sweetly on my cheeks and gently kisses my forehead in gratitude)