Sunday, November 20, 2011

all i want for Christmas

We started our Christmas season the same way we always do: a trip to the mall for a picture with Santa, followed by a few hours of red-kettle bell ringing for the Salvation Army.

As soon as the Christmas season starts, the planning and questions do too:

"When will we get the tree?"
"What part will I have in the Sunday School program?"
"When can we make cheese balls?"
"What are you wishing for?"

This year, I was pretty clear with the big kids.

What I really want this year is for them to do something nice for somebody - anybody at all, write it down on a piece of paper, wrap it up, and put it underneath the tree. What I really want this year is to know that I am raising, thoughtful, well-intentioned people, who will help the world be a better place.

I think I am.
I hope I am.
But having the proof wrapped up in a little box, sure would be nice.

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Thursday, November 17, 2011


I am pretty sickened that stores are opening on Thanksgiving day.  I do not intend to partake.  I hope you won't either. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011


I always meant to post this little snippet from our summer roadtrip. I love Kooka's commentary, but it's pretty tough to take my eyes off of the background.

physical therapy

Today Yoda went to physical therapy.  She has what doctors like to call "delayed gross motor skills" and what her mother likes to call "a case of spoiled-rotten-itis".

Actually "rotten" isn't quite fair - she's a sweet kid, full of hugs, kisses and giggles.  She'll give you a bite of her cookie, wait her turn for the slide, and shares better than any other kid in her mom-n-me class.  So, I'll recant the "rotten" - but not the rest.

According to the professionals, she just has slightly low muscle tone in her quads, but is still completely in the realm of normal for her age (especially since the PT estimated she could have been born as much as 3 weeks premature). I still contend that our family's "always on the go" lifestyle, means this kid gets picked up and carried way too much.

Regardless, at the end of physical therapy today (I didn't even know it was possible to get a baby to do squats - let alone 3 reps of 5), she pulled off this astounding feat, and the whole family was there to help her celebrate:

Saturday, November 5, 2011

why i love halloween

Halloween has always been a big family event.  Costumes are planned months in advance, the front yard decked out with gravestones and lights, fog machines rolling, hot cider and guests until 10 even on a school night - it's a big deal.

This year, as I rambled through the neighborhood with the girls (Punk was out with his own posse), I started wondering why I love this holiday.  I couldn't come up with one good reason, but I can up with a list why this year's was particularly fantastic.

1) The weather was amazing. October in Minnesota is unpredictable, but this year, the weather was perfect.  Chilly enough to be autumn, but not so cold the kids had to wear jackets over their killer costumes.

2) The bazillion kids that come to our house.  Rainman Rico did the math - we passed out over a thousand pieces of candy (and we only gave 1 or two per kid!)

3) Our good friend Alisa was here. She had "just stopped by for a bit" but ended up staying for the mad rush of trick or treaters.  She cracks us up and makes everything more fun.

4) Bonfire in the backyard.

5) My new secret cider recipe.

6) the best part for Punk and Kooka was having both of their parents and step-dad here with them.  Dad airbrushing Punk's face, Rico cooking, Mom doing makeup and hair. Everybody having cider. It meant the world to the kids.

7) Savoring the last of the neighborhood hoopla, before the snow packs us in for the winter.

8) Yoda keeping her spider suit on most of the night.

9) White-chocolate-ghosty pretzel sticks.