Merry Christmas!
Fat Frog

I'm Supposed To Be [insert just about anything else here]!

Welp, Christmas is over. It's good I told you that. Otherwise, you might not know.

My dad came in late last Sunday night - scared me half to death, even though I expected him any minute. We have café curtains in the bay window in the kitchen, where I was sitting doing my scrapbook. Next thing I know, 'tap, tap, tap' on the window, and I look up and see this big giant head. Ahhh! Thus it began.

The visit actually wasn't so bad this time. I had emailed him ahead of time that I didn't want any of that political, racist crap, and I wasn't going to wait on him hand and foot this time. Yay, me! Therapy's good for something. And he emailed me back without being all pissy and for the most part, he stuck with it.

So. Monday was Christmas Eve, and after we sat around (I watched Jade, who warmed to my dad instantly, and snuggled with him), we went to church for the singing and the candle-lighting that I so enjoy. Our attendance has been awful since we had Sophia - so, yeah, way too long ago to still be a good excuse - but the routine has just been all but shot since then. Oh, well. We try.

My dad, a steadfast Christian Scientist, seemed to really enjoy the service, although later he insulted my church as "harmless but useless." Shall I go there? Okay, at least I learn about what Jesus said there, intead of just what Mary Baker Eddy wrote. And after 65 years of going to the same church, he still hates every group who represents something he is not? I don't know if I'd call that harmless... so I guess we're even. BUDDOW!

But back to the Christmas spirit. ;)

We went home and had dinner - I'd stuck a frozen Smithfield marinated pork loin in a Pamper's Chef baker's stone before we left, turned on the oven, and bam! Savory smells greeted us when we arrived home. It was done!  Of course, I didn't eat it, but the boys seemed to enjoy it, as did The Human Garbage Can a.k.a. Sophia.

Then we opened our stockings, our Christmas Eve tradition. But we forgot our other one: Rob reading 'Twas the Night Before Christmas to the kids! Just completely left it out. Whoops. The kids went crazy with their stockings, even though I had really nothing in there but different candies this year, having put all the stocking loot in the attic with the 'big' stuff. Even my dad had a stocking - albeit containing nothing but a lump of coal - but he seemed to enjoy that.

Bed for the kids, then hours and hours of wrapping presents, for me. I'm so freaking fat now, my feet go numb soon after I sit on the floor, so it was an arduous process. (I can't wait 'til January 31st!!) I bought one of those new zippy paper cutter things from Scotch, and it was a bust. I prefer my nice sharp scissors, TYVM. Maybe when I get thinner and regain some agility, but for a big blog with short limbs who's stuck mainly in one spot, it didn't really do the trick.

Tuesday, the big day! After getting to bed around 2:30 AM, the kids woke us up at 8-something. Aghhhh. I made some cinnamon buns for breakfast (love that pop-open can stuff when you're too tired to think!), and then we headed in for the big mêlée. It was overwhelming. To me. And my dad kept saying the same thing. He was pretty much in a state of overwhelm during the entire visit, with the kids constantly crawling all over him, calling his name, wanting to show him something, tell him something or do something with him, and Christmas was even more so. He's a complete neat freak. I am, to an extent - but nothing like my father. No one is. I promise. He just kept looking at the toys (which are still there, by the way. Haven't moved. Well, to be played with, yes, but put away? Nope. Where?!) and paper and shaking his head, whimpering. I rather enjoyed his distress until he started bitching about it and yelling at the kids to clean up. 'Scuse me? Because I think it's my house, and those are my kids, and that is my job. And it's Christmas, for crying out loud.  Let them play with their new crap awhile! He caught me glaring at him over that.

The house shrinks a little bit every time someone comes to visit, y'know what I mean?

So Wednesday, Jade came back, and I felt like absolute crap. I had her in the bouncy seat for much of the day, so she wouldn't hurt herself with all the little toys spread everywhere, and I sat down on the couch for a breather. Rob and my dad were right there... next thing, I woke up to find Jade missing from her seat. Dad had picked her up and was napping with her on the couch. It warmed my heart. And not just a small bit because she's the brown baby. Who knew he liked little kids so much?? Between that Jade-snugging and the amount of time he spends playing with my kids, he really surprises me as a grandpa. He's definitely the fun one. He gets down. He gets into it. He only stops when he's really, genuinely tired. The man has some positive attributes, after all. (heh)

Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, I was supposed to have Jade, and all three days her mother called to say that her mother was going to keep her. Um, okay. (A) I really enjoyed the time I didn't have her, and (B) if I'm going to do this job, I'm going to want consistency and a constant paycheck. So that was the straw the broke the camel's back for me. I called her tonight and told her that it was no rush and I'd keep Jade until then, but she needed to find alternate childcare. It's a relief. I like Jade - love her, even - but organizing our schedule around hers has been a huge PITA.

So that's that. We did a ton of laundry, Chloë and I. I swear, I cannot climb that mountain. Who's the dude who kept having to push that rock up the hill? That's me, with the laundry. It used to be something I just did on Sundays. Now it's All. The. Time. UGH!!  But Chloë negotiated a $2 pay with me for helping with the laundry, and that meant she had enough money to buy another Webkinz when I paid her that and her allowance today. Cha-ching! She got the bullfrog and named her Lilly; that makes 12 for us. Do you know they don't give you a new room for your 10th and up - and you also can't use the pet's name when you buy a room for it and rename it? That's so annoying!!!  In other Webkinz newz, I gave her 9 charms and a bracelet for Christmas so we now have access - full, at that - to the Charm Forest! Fun stuff. (LOL!)

I took her to iPOP class today. She is so ready!!  I will be aghast if she blows it in Los Angeles. Just beside myself. She is doing so well, I would be shocked. Sean was really proud of her, and his wife came in and listened to her monologue today, too. She loved it and gave her muchos kudos.  Then she did her scene and her monologue again, for the ladies out front, and she did great. Good, good, good. We leave in four days!!! And last night, she was in the middle of saying grace when she switched gears and started saying the lines from her monologue. During grace!! It was pretty funny...

While we were at the mall today (for a lunch shop at Charley's Steakery or whatever), I looked in at both Gymboree and TCP for some cute clothes for her auditions - no dresses, or everyone will see her unnerpannies - and I was just so overwhelmed with the choices that we left. 'Sides, she's got lots of cute stuff. So we went to that boutique I love, the one that's going out of business, to see if there was anything, but they are practically empty. Bummer! I wanted to find a cute dress for Sophie too, but nothing. They have bitty baby girl clothes, and the only bitty baby girl I know is Lisa's Emilie, but she has no reason for a fancy party dress. Even a gorgeous little tangerine one. So I bought a bunch of hair doodles, a tiara, and a necklace-and-earring set, so we have lots of options for iPOP.

And that's my story, folks. Now to do those reports (oh yeah, we went to Bennigan's tonight for dinner. They sucked!!! as expected.)