Saturday, December 31, 2011

Holiday Pics

It's been a wonderful, rejuvenating two weeks off with my baby boy, who, by the way, is no longer a baby. Today, he officially put his own shirt completely on without assistance from me. Rather bittersweet, but Mommy is very happy and proud of her little boy.

That being said, I've got a handful of pics from the holidays. I hope you enjoy!

Syd and his 'yi-yi' - we have no idea where he came up with the name for his silkie, but here it is. He loves to put it behind his head while he eats. I think he was watching Abby from Sesame Street here. He's just a little obsessed with her at the moment.

A Christmas box! He decided to help Mommy break it down for recycling by playing with... er... in it!

Daddy and Sydney enjoy "Daddy's tookies" after work, one day. Like Father, like son.

Syd was in the holiday spirit as he colored one afternoon.

Mommy and Syd Christmas morning.

Syd is dressed for family visiting Christmas Day. Like his new green shoes? He kept asking for green shoes, but this is all we could find this time of year in his (EXTRA WIDE) size.

I just like the way this one turned out. Playing so nicely, and quietly.

Santa brought him the train table (Thank you, Christie!). Mommy and Daddy bought him the Dinosaur Train. He loves them both, but was obsessed here with watching the Dinosaur Train go round and round and round.

Still watching...

Aaaaaaaand, Scene!

A very Merry Holiday season to all, and to all, a Happy New Year with 2012!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Juuuuust a Tad Terrifying...

Steve saw the follow-up story to this original on the Today Show. I can't fathom doing something like this, but I guess that's why I still owe student loans in my own name...

(Hmm...I actually had the video embedded here, but every time I try to test it, it shows a more recent clip on an unrelated topic. Methinks they recycled the embedding code? Regardless, check out the link to the show. It's frightening what some people will do to get what they want.)

The problem I found is that since Syd is a minor, not even a teen, yet, the credit companies will not let you request a report via the internet. If you look further down the page with the link, though, you'll see steps you can take to check your child's credit as well as steps to take if your child's identity has been stolen. Trans Union, according to the Today Show, is the most parent-user friendly. Happy searching, everyone, and I hope we all obtain the results we want - nothing.

Friday, December 23, 2011

The Darkest Evening of the Year

"As the wheel of days turns into darkness, it reveals the light and hope of spring."

- Loreena McKennitt

I don't know if it is because of the time of year, what with the new year coming, or if it is the absolute and sudden pause in what I previously thought was important to return to what is truly important (family and home, since that is where I find my quickening when the hectic day at work is done), but I find myself increasingly contemplative this time each year.

The shortest day of the year was yesterday. And it felt even shorter than it was due to the leaden skies that broke only briefly, allowing the sun to peer down at us before a torrent of rain hit. And last night was the longest night of the year, and it felt as such. But the new day dawned, and though there is still a heavy layer of clouds, they are more broken up. Syd is feeling better, I still have a full week of relaxation remaining, and the shortest day is beginning to lengthen.

I had quite the mental list of things I wanted to accomplish during the two weeks I am off from school. As of now, one full week in to my break, nearly nothing on that list is done. The thing is, very little of my list was school related. I find, though, that I am so much less concerned with what I had planned to accomplish. Instead, I'm finding myself entirely successful in other ways - things that weren't on my list that I had forgotten about, things that took precedence from my original plans, things that are simply more FUN, like coloring with Syd and baking, and cooking, and wrapping (and unwrapping) presents, and watching cute holiday themed shows, and the list goes on.

My priorities have shifted. I can't help but think that that is the most important gift I have given myself - I've allowed myself to let go of worries and embrace the spirit of this time of year. Rather than sitting down with a list of goals for the new year, I would rather continue with this mindset and enjoy my time here. Syd will be this age only once. My family will be right HERE only once.

The woods are lovely. They are dark and they are deep. I pray I will be able to retain this mindset, since I have miles to go before I sleep. My idea of what I need to accomplish has shifted. My promises have shifted. Promises to myself; to my family; to my friends and to my students. I would like to think in that order. Miles of promises to keep. Now, if it would only just snow...

Monday, December 12, 2011

It's Wonderful

I'm packing up my car with a load to take to school tomorrow - some school related, most not...

Sydney is watching as he finished his spaghetti.

"It's Christmas!"

"Yes, baby. It is!"

"Bite? Bite of Christmas?"

Doesn't that say it all?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

December 11, and This Says it All...

Think Santa argues over semantics?

And who can possibly deny the appeal of the pre-"First Christmas I will probably remember" maniacal grin?

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


So, last week I allowed myself to be a little more laissez faire when we were going for our nightly "walk inna weeds." It was raining lightly, but, like tonight, it was almost a balmy rain. A driveway down the block from ours does not drain well, or as Steve says, at all. A beautiful, 6+ inch deep puddle formed at the bottom of the driveway. Syd started splashing.

Daddy wasn't thrilled with this, and wanted to know why I didn't freak out. It was a warm night. He had his winter coat on, and we were running the gas tank on fumes to ensure a quick bed time. Syd still takes a nightly bath, so I honestly didn't see the point in fussing over him, in fighting over whether or not we bypassed the puddle, or worrying about laundry, since we had another pair of shoes he could wear until those dried out. Besides, he's growing out of his shoes so quickly (width, not length. THAT's going to be fun soon... Just jumped another shoe size in width, yet he still has nearly an inch of toe room...) it didn't matter if he 'ruined' them.

He was having so much fun. If only that driveway were twenty feet further down the road, we would have been under a street lamp and able to get some footage. The woman who lives in the house came outside to smoke a cigarette. She was quite entertained just watching him jump, run, splash, shriek in laughter, fall on his face (ugh!) and get up ready to jump again.

It tickled me so much just to watch him do this. I wish I wish I wish I had this on tape. Maybe we can capture it again before the sun goes to bed... But it made me think -

One of my absolute favorite holiday memories was when I was... 9? Ish? Grandma made each of us our own blanket - mine still sits on my living room couch - white with pink flowers and blue butterflies. We had spent the weekend making our slew of Christmas cookies - peanut bars (cake coated in frosting and rolled in crushed peanuts. Oh, yum.), toffee bars, Butterfingers (Mexican Wedding cookies), popcorn balls, and those little sugar cookies made from the cookie press - shapes of stars, and diamonds, and all decorated with colored sugar. Yummers...

Anyway - Mom told us all to go get changed in to our pajamas. We came downstairs to find our blankets spread out in the living room. She had trays full of the cookies and bowls full of popcorn. And that was our dinner. We ate Christmas cookies and sat around, wrapped in our blankets and watching Rudolf and Frosty and The Grinch. This was back when that was pretty much all they had - no Shrek, or Elf on the Shelf, or Virginia. And I don't quite recall what we did after - probably went to bed, but I do know that I was so shocked that I got sugar for dinner. And we had so much fun. It was a wonderful time of family and togetherness and throwing the 'rules' to the wind. What's childhood without some of that every once in a while? Isn't that one reason why we want to return to the "Land of Innocence?"

What is your favorite holiday memory? What one time really sticks out in your mind? Share. I'd love to hear from you. And if you're all having issues with commenting on others' blogs like I am (I SWEAR I'm not ignoring you...Just don't know what the issue is.) then send me a text or an email. I'd love to hear your stories.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Magic. And Toddler Talk

This is truly a magical time of year. We put up our tree today. We decided, last year, when Syd was beginning to really get around, that we'd better go fake for a few years. The nice thing about that is the tree gets to stay up just a little longer than normal. So, we, Syd and I, put the tree together this year, and he assisted Mommy with making sure every light bulb worked as well as with hanging the garland and the (cheap) bell ornaments that he loved loved loved shaking to hear them ring.

That's all he got to do. Then, it was bath and bed. But Mommy got to finish, and when he wakes up tomorrow, he'll have a preliminary Christmas morning.

Daddy missed most of this. But Grandad is doing quite well after surgery. And the tree is beautiful, though a little lopsided (cheap bells on the bottom, Lenox "Baby's 1st, 2nd, and 3rd Christmas" at the top...). And our fireplace heater adds just the right ambiance to the room. All that is missing is the snow, hot cocoa, and wide variety of holiday music.

Add - the deer. Steve got home from the hospital and was pulling pack mule duty to clean up the boxes. He went out to the car to retrieve something and called to me. "Hurry! But be quiet!" There were two does, beautiful, majestic creatures, walking down the middle of our road. Seriously, all we were missing was the snow. And I do not live in the rural part of the city. Magical.

And now, the fun part...

Mommy was finishing her holiday cards while Syd napped today. He woke up. Daddy went to get him from the crib while I cleaned off the table.
Syd: Wanna draw sumping
Daddy: You want to draw? Let's get the crayons out.
Syd: Wanna draw Mommy's paper.
Mommy: No, baby - Here's your paper and crayons!
All is quiet as my boy draws.
Syd: Daddy draw
Daddy takes over.
Syd: Its wunnerful!
Daddy: Well, thank you, Syd!
Syd: I draw now.
Daddy: What are you drawing?
Syd: It's bird poop. Bird poop.
Daddy: You drew bird poop?
Syd: Right there. Bird poop onna paper.

Where that came from... No clue. But I thought it was hilarious. And believe me, I had a hard time not slicing myself as I cut up the roast for dinner I was laughing so hard. Now, the question is... Do I frame the bird poop?