Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Traditionally Speaking

Happy (almost) December!  I love December.  We get to partake in all things Christmas, there is a huge break from "regular" life at the end of the month, and the cold temperatures are new on the scene so they  haven't yet driven me to the point of insanity and sweat suits.

This year, our little family is embarking on a very busy, but adventurous December.  Upon returning from a celebration of thankfulness in Texas, my husband reminded me that "we are putting our house on the market in January, and I would like to put a lot of stuff in storage before we show it."  I replied with a simple, "that sounds great!  It will be good to get some clutter and stuff out of the house."

And then he "sprung it on me" that January is next month!  I am a relatively organized person and I LOVE to get rid of things we do not use.  However, our family of 4 and an animal as acquired quite a lot of stuff, clothes, toys, tools, decorations, and MANY other nick knacks that have suddenly started to drive me crazy.  This is even after selling $700 worth of stuff in a garage sale over the Summer!  Needless to say, I have my work cut out for me in this department.

In other news: We will be traveling to my parents' home town to celebrate my grandmother on her 90th birthday with "all the family" as Bug says.  There will be more on this next week, as the birthday party weekend approaches.

December also brings about one of my most favorite words: tradition.  If something happens once, and I enjoyed the happenings; it is likely that I will declare it to be a new tradition.... and I may or may not suggest that we should make a t-shirt or a Styrofoam cup to celebrate it.

Now that I am a parent I have assumed the role of tradition keeper and maker.  Whether it is a tradition from my family or my husbands, I want to keep it and pass it and make it specific to our family.  Here are a few that my husband and I have absorbed from our upbringings:

*some are celebrated solely with one side of the family*

Santa: talking about him, writing him a letter, not idolizing him, but enjoying the tradition of the idea
Chinese food on Christmas Eve
Tamales on Christmas Eve.... real tamales, not greasy or crumbly... only goodness.
Those little poppers with the paper crown and the toy inside (ringing any bells??) at the place setting at Christmas Eve dinner
The decorations are always the same.... as they should be
Runny noses
Christmas tree decorating the day after Thanksgiving
Champagne with frozen peaches at some point surrounding Christmas Day and presents
Stuffing stockings.... to the point of overflow
Nativity scenes
Watching each person as they open their gift, one at a time
The father of the youngest child reading The Night Before Christmas to all the kids on Christmas Eve
Huge big brunch after opening presents
Going to a movie on Christmas Day
Kids racing into the living room to see the Santa gifts
Looking at other people's Christmas lights
Watching White Christmas
Singing Happy Birthday to Jesus
Christmas Eve church service as a family
Leaving cookies and milk for Santa
Christmas pajamas

There are many more that occur throughout the month, but those are the few that mostly surround the actual day of December 25th.

Now that I have my own family, I have started to implement a few of my own traditions.

Tomorrow we begin a new tradition.  (I realize that sentence does not make sense.... but hopefully the action we are beginning tomorrow will become a tradition.... get the idea?)  Over the past couple of months I have gathered children's books on the subject of Christmas; from my parents' house, from our own bookshelves, and with a little help from Amazon to finish out the collection.  We now have 25 books, (poorly) wrapped in (cheap) Christmas wrapping paper, ready to be traditionalized.

Every night after the dinner/bath time dance the girls will get to pick one book from the basket, and then we will read it all together before bed.  I know there will be nights that it doesn't all work picture perfectly as I have made it sound, but that's life with toddlers.... expectations are minimal, but excitement is necessary.

A few of the other things we have started....

Making a gingerbread house (but at our house, "none of that stuff actually tastes good.... it's like all the play food in the kitchen in your room: not for eating, just for playing")
The wreath on our front door.... that we made with the big bulbed colored lights... (think J.Crew Holiday catalog cover: 2007.... you are remembering it now.....)
Sprinkling "Reindeer food" (glitter and bird seed) in the yard on Christmas Eve
Elf on a Shelf.... our Elf is named Glitter and he gets a daily report on how "I was so nice to my friends at school today, Glitter!"  and "Look, Glitter, I'm showing my sister love!"... in hopes that St. Nicholas will hear of her niceties in Glitter's nightly report.

I'm certain, and hopeful, that many more traditions will develop as our family grows..... as long as we don't start participating in that strange "jump in the icy water and swim in there" tradition.  I will steer us more in the warm and safe direction.

Happy December Eve!

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Be Thankful, You Turkey!

I figured I would join the masses of people in social networking world and air my thankfulness. Straight to business.

I am thankful for my husband.
Saturday was my husband's 30th birthday and we celebrated in a big way. Four of my friends and I planned this party for our husbands who have been friends for about 10 years (15 for a few of them). We had a big time with tons of friends and family and my feet have finally recovered from the 7 hours of fabulous shoes I wore that night. It was the greatest birthday present I could have given, the husband, daddy, provider, protector, leader, and comedian our little family has come to know and love.

I am thankful for perspective.
Last week I helped plan an event for about 250 women in my Bible study. Our guest speaker is Mother to 19 children and has the 20th on the way. I've been thinking about her all week as little frustrations pop up..... Laundry, meal times, grocery shopping. I was frustrated as I folded laundry yesterday and remembered, "she does this for 20 people every week, there are only 4 of us, one of which wears scrubs every day.... I think I can handle this."

I am thankful for Joy at the appointment desk.
Last week amongst the craziness of event planning, I managed to schedule 2 doctor appointments and a dentist appointment. It should come as no surprise that I missed my dentist appointment all together, and then remembered Bug's endocrine appointment 5 minutes AFTER it started. I was very thankful for Joy, the receptionist at "appointments". She laughed at my excuse...."Joy! Hi. My daughter had an appointment 5 minutes ago, but she won't be there because she is currently enjoying circle time and centers.". After a few minutes of small talk, we had an appointment for the next morning. All went well, as Bug amazed me with her poise, watching Ronald from the lab draw blood from her tiny arm, sticking her with a huge needle and filling two big tubes. She sat as still as a statue and took deep breaths. When it was over she reminded us that she was brave ("I am so brave Mommy.") and ready to get stickers and leave. When we left she requested new lip gloss and chick fill a, and life was good again.

I am thankful for my eaters.
Bug and Peanut love to eat. There is not much that Bug will turn down and I have to go to the grocery 3 times a week to keep us in fruit for Peanut. I have the hardest time grocery shopping with them because as soon as I pick something up to put it in the cart they both want to eat it right away. Great problem to have, but I've said it before, and I'll say it again; Hide the bananas!

I am thankful for 2 a.m.
We check Bug's blood sugar every night at 2 a.m. I have grown strangely fond of this ritual. It eases my mind to know what her numbers are and to see her soundly sleeping in her bed. My husband and I have also had some great conversations surrounding the 2 o'clock hour.
Me: "my alarm went off, it's your turn to do blood sugar."
Husband: "yeah, I got it. I'm up."
10 minutes pass......
Me: "are you getting up? Blood sugar?"
H: "I am UP! I got it!"
10 minutes.........
Me: "ok....are you going to check sugar or not?..."
H: "I'll do it! Just get me some BLOOD!"

Very convincing and very much still asleep, he didn't remember that exchange the next day.

Lastly, I am thankful for my big huge vehicle.
We are loading up the car in the (early) morning with kids, dog, adults, and stuff and going to spend the holiday with my family in Texas. I had my first "we are moving to a different state in 6 months" meltdown last night, so concentrated family togetherness could not come at a better time! We are runny nose free and ready to be thankful.

Now off to be thankful for a Disney movie, so I can pack and clean this house before thanksgiving travels 2011!

Monday, November 14, 2011


OOPS! I totally dropped the ball, and missed the live webcast about the artificial pancreas!  I am totally swamped with two big events that I decided to plan back to back; all fun things but busy..... so I will have to get some research done soon and give everyone a complete report.


Have a great week!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Be Aware

I come bearing a lot of excuses for my lack of communication lately, but I will spare you the over-share and welcome myself back into your view... With a slightly boring post.

November is diabetes awareness month, but since I make it a point to make you aware of diabetes on a regular basis, I promise not to overwhelm anyone with facts or least not all at one time.

I retain knowledge much better when I have a visual to which I can attach my thoughts. With that In mind, I have found a few pictures that I feel will bring about more "awareness" on the subject of diabetes; more specifically, type 1 diabetes. The pictures are pretty self explanatory, so there will be no captions.

On a slightly different note; November 14th is world diabetes day. Don't bother checking your calendar, it is not a holiday, yet. There will be a live webcast at 3:30pm ET discussing the new developments with the artificial pancreas. I will discuss this in more detail later, but just know that it's an exciting time for type 1 diabetes research.

That's all the awareness I'm going to bring about today.

Have a great weekend.