Who I’m drinking with tonight on New Years Eve…

We're all staying in tonight - Drama Mama and The Mogul want to have a party again this year until midnight to celebrate the dawning of a new year; the Pirate King and I will grudgingly prop our eyelids open to chaperone and/or prevent bloodshed. I've stocked up with some festive snack foods (Li'l Smokies, anyone?), have a batch of chili going in my new crockpot (more about this later), and made sure I have the appropriate beverages: sparkling apple cider and a bottle of sparkling wine, of course. But if you assumed the sparkling cider was for DM and TM's benefit - well, you'd be only partially correct. See, DM and PK get to split the sparkling cider. And I'll be doling [Read more...]

Ahhhh…family togetherness

(subtitled 'when, exactly do the kids go back to school again...?') The nice pink puffy clouds of warm familial feelings that floated around after Christmas ended dissolved in a hailstorm of communal bad tempers on Wednesday. Thursday, I tried the kid swap trick - DM went to our friend's for the afternoon to play with puppies and kittens and a girl closer her age; I took my friend's own sullen teenager in exchange to do some bonding with The Mogul over here. But an evening dinner meeting sans kids resulted in one small girl hiccup-crying in my bed upon my return as she gasped out (between trying to catch her breath, poor dear) that her brother just Absolutely Had to Go - [Read more...]

Blissful lethargy

I've got one child curled up in my bedroom under the quilts, playing quietly with her new Nintendo DS Lite. I've got the other kid commandeering every single electronic device in the living room: if not the Playstation, then the television, the phone, his laptop, or any combination thereof. (I managed to carve out some TiVo time tonight when he was out with his dad for dinner so I could watch Pride and Prejudice again, though...) When I think of it, I move another load of laundry along. Or wash some dishes, putter through the house doing desultory picking up. But more often than not, I'm reading - books, the piles of newspapers that stacked up waiting for me while the [Read more...]

Sorry, I’m not giving up the gwumpkie…

My daughter loves hearing me recite her heritage - the many ancestors from many different countries that make up who she is. She talks often of wishing relatives she's never ever met before (most who died before she was ever born) were at important family functions. And my own mom and her siblings marvel at just how both DM's looks and her spirit remind them of their own beloved mother (I see the resemblance daily myself...) My own siblings used to joke that we were 'mutts' - how else do you describe a background that includes French Canadian trappers, piously staunch Belgian and German homesteaders, and a dash or two of American Indian, English, and Dutch? Mix that with my [Read more...]

Dear Santa,

I have been a very good girl this year - ask anyone! Except - don't ask my mother, please. She still hasn't recovered from the, um, gentle chastisement I gave her when she tried to teasingly backseat drive as a supposed tension reliever during Day Four of the Enforced Family Togetherness that was my son's bar mitzvah last week. But in my defense - I was leading a bunch of strangers in a four minivan caravan (yep, it's as much fun as it sounds, grrr) to a chinese restaurant that wasn't quite on the beaten track, while trying to make sure the slowpoke at the end of the line didn't drop off - no mean feat due to the dark and rainy conditions that night, wouldn't you agree? [Read more...]