Tuesday, December 26, 2006

It Just Wouln't Be Christmas...

...without someone getting sick. This year, it's Richard and Mom. Mom has been hit with larengitis and Richard has a stomach bug. Yuck! Looks like I'll be putting out the tamale dinner tonight :) Keeping my fingers crossed that Hayes and the girls stay healthy.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Calm Before The Storm

I am relaxing in my newly painted studio space. Hayes is happily playing in the bath, Richard is tucked away in the newly dubbed "man cave," Mom and Dad are at a movie, and the Mugele crew is on their way. I am trying to savor this moment.

I love the hubbub of Christmas: the glittering paper and lights, the scurrying last-minute shopping, the baking, the carols, the family gathering and laughing. It's truly marvelous. But it doesn't leave much time for quiet nights by the tree. It seems appropriate that we are having our Christmas Eve service tonight, instead of tomorrow night. I am glad to have the company of my friends and surrogate family to wrap up in before the excitement of the next two days. I rely on their quiet love and protection more than I would care to admit at times. They keep me sane in my rush to enjoy the adventure of my life. What would I do without them? Spin into oblivion, probably.

So I am off to curl up by the tree with my dog and some egg nog before the treck to Carmel. Enjoy your holidays. I know I will be making the most of mine.

Tuesday, December 19, 2006


We've had a crazy up and down couple of weeks with Hayes. He has been fighting, yes, fighting, with some of the other boys in his class. The first time it was due to a practical joke that backfired on Hayes. He has become quite the comedian at school. So we have done a lot of talking about what is and is not ok to joke about and how jokes should never ever leave anyone feeling bad about themselves. I mean really, he's five! So I think we have gone a long way in resolving the fighting; until toady.

A note came home from the teacher, attached to a note Hayes had to write about how he was fighting at school and had to miss learing center time, again! I was ready to pinch his little head off! Once we got to the bottom of things (and it took a good 20 minutes and two versions of the story) we discover the fight is about Hayes not getting his way on the playground and deciding to push and shove until he did. Good God! He has this unbelievable desire to be first and get everything he wants and now. I suppose, later in life, we will admire his passion and drive. Right now, if he hits another kid I think he'll never make it to adulthood.

He had to write notes of apology to his friends and go to bed early with no playtime after dinner last night. And I said the words to him that I vowed I would never say: I am disappointed in you. Ugh. I realize it's the week before Xmas break, but really? Fighting? As the pacifist of the family, I want to weep for his angry little heart. And as his mother, I want to punish the hell out of him so he will never do it again. And as the former teacher, I am torn between volunteering in the classroom every day in order to keep a strict eye on him and never showing my face in the classroom again. Isn't this fun? What really worries me is that I am already pulling out my bag of tricks from teaching, and he is only five. Those kids were 12 and in the alternative programs. God help me.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year

Last weekend was fabulous! We had a cocktail party to end all parties. This means that we cooked for about three days straight and had 40 of the most delightful people we know to our home to kick off the holidays! It was marvelous. I wouldn't have changed a thing: fabulous food, amazing friendship, lovely and strong cocktails -- possibly heaven on earth.

I did, however, plan a very large Sunday on the heels of a very large Saturday. Our church service was meaningful, and long, which meant that I missed my date at the bark park with a fellow dog owner. This was sad. And Richard and I looked a bit like zombies we were so tired from the party. But to top it all off, we had plans to take Hayes and a friend to ride the Polar Express. An historical train about two hours from us transforms into the Polar Express in December, and we all get to go to the North Pole to meet Santa. Well, in typical Harrison fashion, we missed it. On the bright side, we realized that we had miscalculated the amount of time it would take to get there and called from the road to switch to another train -- two weeks from now. But we were already an hour outside Indy and so we took the kids and my parents to the Cracker Barrel. Fun Times!

Naturally, we have a very full December, and the next train weekend will be back-to-back with the children Museum's Snowflake Soiree, but we at least have passage on the first train, so if something extreme were to happen, we could certainly find room on the second train that same evening! Someone please remind me next year that I don't want to schedule ANYTHING else on the weekend of the cocktail party, ok?