Monday, December 31, 2007

2007 Accomplishment Summary & 2008 Goals

Name: Mommy, Manic

Title: Mother, Wife, Whole Unique Person

Accomplishment Summary (summarize accomplishments vs. goals):

Finalize Adjustment to Stay-at-Home-Motherhood

- Read I Was a Really Good Mom Before I Had Kids, The Happiest Toddler on the Block, Mommy Wars, and numerous other self-help/parenting books

- Started reading mommy blogs

- Sought help for addiction to mommy blogs

- Started own blog

- Lowered expectations for accomplishments based on external input/research (mommy blogs)

- Instituted cocktails 'mommy popcicles' with neighboring SAHM

Lose Weight/Exercise

- Lost approximately 12 lbs and one clothing size

- Have managed to keep about 8 lbs off- Joined gym end of Q-1

- Attended with regularity for 2nd and 3rd quarters

- Ate everything in site and have not gone to gym in month of December

Read Better Books/Read paper daily

- Purchased Love in the Time of Cholera
- Read first chapter

- Purchased far too much trash/magazines

- Have daily subscription to Boston Globe

- During recent outpatient surgery for suspicious mole, read Globe cover-to-cover.

Strengths/Growth (describe strengths and how they have changed in the past year):

Working-world strengths in the area of relationship-building and project management have helped negligibly in accomplishing the goal of smooth transition to full-time management of a home and family. Extemporaneousness, multi-tasking, and lowering adjusting expectations have been best-utilized tools.

2008 Goals

Goal: Enjoy my children more

Action Plan:

- (1)Engage in day-to-day and household tasks with them present/assisting (2)Dedicate more time to Chutes and Ladders/Candy Land/Webkinz

Success Criteria: More accomplishment Less aggravation

Goal: A place for everything and everything in its place

Action Plan:
- Umm...

Success Criteria: Less clutter, chaos, and confusion

Goal: Personal Growth – Attend wine course

Action Plan:
- Check Boston/Cambridge Centers for Adult Education for a course.

Success Criteria: Attend course, Learn more about wine, Enjoy adult time

Goal: Quality time alone with spouse

Action Plan:
- Schedule and adhere to monthly date nights

Success Criteria: Remembering we like each other - priceless

Associate’s Signature:___________________________________

Manager’s Signature:____________________________________

Sunday, December 23, 2007

The Face of Belief

As Andy's twenty-something cousin entered the livingroom last night dressed as Santa, I saw the faces of belief. Six little kids; three five-year-olds, one-three-year old, and two, two-year olds all jumbled together on a couch near the fireplace. Two of them, mine. I saw belief too on the faces of the many adults in the room. Including Mrs. Claus, busily snapping pictures along with the rest of us and grinning at her husband of one year. And I believed as well.

Oh, Santa handed out presents but astonishingly, not a child ripped into his package. They simply stared, a little hesitant, a lot shy, each with the forgotten toy dangling from his hand. After Santa departed, the adults each eagerly grabbed a child and ran with them onto the back deck pointing at various stars. A few of us were sure we could see a miniature sleigh and eight tiny reindeer traveling far off in the sky.

Throughout twelve years (yes - 12!) of Catholic school, I was taught that faith is not seeing and yet believing. Here were a bunch of young kids who still do believe. When Tim walked into the room in his Santa suit, there was no doubt to be found. Of course there's a magical old man who sees us when we're sleeping, and loves us, and gives us precious gifts, and just asks us to be good. Santa is the embodiment of the goodness that even this ala carte Catholic can't dismiss.

Whether and however we believe -- in Jesus, in Heaven, in God, in good in the universe, it's all out there for us.

Merry Christmas my friends.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

I'm Dreaming...

Oh, the weather outside is frightful.

But the smiles are so delightful.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Mark This Date

December 19, 2007 2:30 pm EST - Manic Mommy resents Santa for the first time ever.

HRH and I are leaving the craft store with $26.00 worth of crap crafts. Specifically, we bought the molds, chocolate, sticks, and wrappers to make cute little Christmas lollypops. We also bought coloring/sticker books. Apparently, I missed the memo that this year, we'll be giving small presents to each of our classmates at preschool.

HRH is only in a class of nine kids so it's not a huge deal but we also do Halloween treats, cupcakes for birthdays, and one intrepid mommy actually had Thanksgiving gifts. I would have to say it's out of control. God knows I feed into it as much as the next mom. But I digress.

As we're leaving the store, HRH states that I've hurt his feelings because I always say no when he wants to buy something. This time, "something" was the entire display box of cheap Hot Wheels candy. (In his defense, I don't think he realized they weren't a set). I went into a my song and dance about how it's a mere six days from Christmas when we will awaken, run downstairs in our PJs, and marvel at the wonder of all that Santa has generously provided.

And I got a blank stare. Santa is the one who goes to all the trouble, money, time, thought, and energy. Mom and Dad are just the ones who videotape the aftermath. Irrationally, I thought, "so why does Santa get all the glory?".

I also wondered if we're doing a good enough job instilling the proper values in our children. I grew up without much money and sometimes felt that I was missing out on things that my friends had. In reality, it was the crazy father that upset our homelife rather than the lack of another Barbie. Still, even knowing this, I tend to overcompensate; big birthday parties, big over-the-top Christmas, small purchases almost whenever they ask.

Is the result that my kids take things for granted or do they know that these things they have are hard-won? We talk about kids who don't have enough, we talk about giving to others. We try to model all these values but really, how do you instill a sense of gratitude in a preschooler - and how do you know if you're doing enough?


[Ed: Got an email from a friend providing me some perspective along with this little pearl of wisdom:

"It's like Jeffrey Dahmer writing a book on food. "

JOY BEHAR ~ on celebrity mom Lynne Spears' upcoming book on parenting, which has been delayed indefinitely after her 16-year-old daughter, Jamie Lynn, announced that she was pregnant. ]

Friday, December 14, 2007

The Ongoing List of Bizarre Things We Say

Overheard this week at our little Cabina Contenta:

~ Sweetie, you can't do peeps with a sock on your hands. - MM to HRH

~ Did you just kiss that pancake? - Andy to RC

~ Ugh. Don't lick that off the floor! - MM and Andy to RC

~ I don't want you to ever play "orange juice" again. - MM to RC and HRH

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Who are we kidding here?

And why is it somehow only acceptable at Christmas time?

Mmm hmmm...

Friday, December 7, 2007

Why Nick Jr. Should Pay My Visa Bill

HRH (running breathlessly into kitchen):


Flippin' Frogs!

You put it together!

Batteries not included!


Thursday, December 6, 2007

Can't Wait to Hear This Explanation

For those of you who know my 2-year-old, it's no surprise to hear that he's never met a mess he didn't make. I knew when saw this shirt on, that I had to have it. Truly the perfect marriage of man and medium.

Here is RC with his new shirt (Diego yogurt stain sold separately):
Here he is, several stains of unknown origin later, about to upend the dog's food and water and throw it all over the kitchen.which involved the use of these:and causing him to be placed in time out:
The shirt held up beautifully.
Manic Mommy? Not so much...

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Can't We Just Play AquaDots Instead?

She couldn’t believe that she’d actually agreed to have a drink with him – and at his house no less!
I really can't stay - Baby it's cold outside
I've got to go away - Baby it's cold outside

She’d given in to the holiday spirit and now, here she was in this terrible weather, looking for a way to escape.
This evening has been - Been hoping that you'd drop in
So very nice - I'll hold your hands, they're just like ice

She thought to herself, “I’ll use the old parents excuse.”
My mother will start to worry - Beautiful, what's your hurry
My father will be pacing the floor - Listen to the fireplace roar
So really I'd better scurry - Beautiful, please don't hurry

He was already so far gone that she figured one more drink would send him over the edge and she could run.
Well Maybe just a half a drink more - Put some music on while I pour

She was beginning to wonder if anyone would hear her screams, should it come to that.
The neighbors might think - Baby, it's bad out there

She was beginning to feel the effects of something more than two glasses of “eggnog”
Say, what's in this drink - No cabs to be had out there

She could feel the waves crash over her, pulling her under
I wish I knew how - Your eyes are like starlight now
To break this spell - I'll take your hat, your hair looks swell
I ought to say no, no, no, sir - Mind if I move a little closer
At least I'm gonna say that I tried - What's the sense in hurting my pride
I really can't stay - Baby don't hold out
Ahh, but it's cold outside

C'mon baby

Before the euphoria fully envelops her, she puts it as plainly as possible:
I simply must go - Baby, it's cold outside
The answer is no - Ooh baby, it's cold outside

But tries not to awaken the beast that lurks inside
This welcome has been - I'm lucky that you dropped in
So nice and warm -- Look out the window at that storm

She thinks; let him think that someone will be looking for her
My sister will be suspicious - Man, your lips look so delicious

No, someone who could take him
My brother will be there at the door - Waves upon a tropical shore

She casts about for something that will help her.
My maiden aunt's mind is vicious - Gosh your lips look delicious

She reaches into her pocket and presses the panic button of the cell phone
Well maybe just a half a drink more - Never such a blizzard before
I've got to go home - Oh, baby, you'll freeze out there

She searches for some kind of weapon
Say, lend me your comb - It's up to your knees out there

She hears the sirens in the distance
You've really been grand - Your eyes are like starlight now

Keep him talking…
But don't you see - How can you do this thing to me
There's bound to be talk tomorrow - Making my life long sorrow
At least there will be plenty implied - If you caught pneumonia and died

Yes, the sirens are definitely headed this way.
I really can't stay - Get over that old out
Ahh, but it's cold outside
Baby it's cold outside
Brr its cold...It's cold out there
Can’t you stay awhile longer baby

She just needs to hold on for a few more seconds
Well... I really shouldn't... alright
Make it worth your while baby
Ahh, do that again...

Police! Hands in the air!

Things I Never Thought I'd Say - Part II

The Scene:
RC enters kitchen, opens silverware drawer, grabs a handful, and tosses them down the basement stairs.

HRH happens to be walking up the basement stairs.

MM: RC! Don't throw all the forks at your brother.

HRH: (completely and surprisingly unfazed). They were spoons.

Oh, well then.

Monday, December 3, 2007

From the Mouths of Babes

Transcript of this morning's conversation while HRH and I are brushing our teeth:

HRH: What's the name of that square shape only longer?

MM: You mean a rectangle?

HRH: No, it's still shaped like a square only higher.

(Indicates length/width/height with hands)

MM: Oh, you mean a cube.

HRH: Yeah! A pube.

MM: No, sweetie, a c-c-cube

HRH: A c-c-cube? With a "c", not a "p"?

MM: Uh-huh.

HRH: Okay.


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