Friday, December 28, 2007

Odds and Ends

A couple of thoughts from the last couple of days, in no order, and with no particular segues:

When I was little I always thought I would grow up, get married, and have lots of kids. The number varied, but I think the most was around 10. Yikes. With the whole family being here for Christmas, we have had 10 people using the downstairs bathroom and I've realized that I am so not cut out for the big family life. Yesterday, counting the baby my mom watches, there were 5 kids ranging in age from 7 months to 10 years plus 6 adults. It was loud and chaotic. Fun, yes, but man, that's a lot of people to clean up after. (on a side note, my mom has done daycare for over 15 years, now, so there have been many days when I have watched between 7 and 10 kiddos for her. So this realization about the large family and my lack of gifts isn't a new one, but has been reinforced)

The slumber party continues, but this time with the 7 year old niece. She's a LOT more wiggly than her sister, and she kept rolling over on me all night. Fun, but a little crazy at the same time. We'll see how tonight goes since she's back again. The bunny is Snowball, who stayed on her side of the bed...

And finally: The 7 month old previously mentioned is one of the joys in my days, in addition to my nieces. She has adopted me as a surrogate mom on the days that she stays with us, and we have a lovely time together. She loves to sit on my lap in the mornings when I check my e-mail. Today I wasn't paying close enough attention when she decided she wanted my coffee cup and she managed to dump a half a cup of coffee on my laptop keyboard. Unsurprisingly, the keyboard no longer works, which means I have to take it in tomorrow to see if it can be salvaged. The good news is that the coffee was only luke-warm, so baby girl did not burn herself. I have to say that life around here is nothing if not an adventure! If only I could use this as an excuse to get out of finishing my sermon on the terrible text about the slaughter of the innocents.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas...

The presents are unwrapped, the children are playing (wearing matching red plaid pj's and new bathrobes from Daddy), the breakfast is cooking, and the weather is....well, it's a brown Christmas instead of a white one, but it means the roads are good for the rest of our family who are traveling here today. It's a beautiful morning all around and I am grateful for the many blessings in the life of my family. May your Christmas be a blessed one, too, and may you feel the presence of God with you. Merry Christmas!

Friday, December 21, 2007

The Never Ending Slumber Party

Apparently if you invite a 4 year old to sleep with you they never leave. We've now had 3 nights in a row of sleepovers and she's already announced she'll be back tonight. Non-matching pj's, though, since we only have the 1 set of penguin jammies.

I really don't mind the company, but it does kind of crack me up. Plus, the 7 year old niece recently told me that it's not fair that I'm the only without a roommate, so having their room to herself for a couple of nights has made her quite happy. The bear is Roseberry Rose, and this was her first slumber party.

Completely Irreverent

I just saw a t-shirt that said WTFWJD. I kind of want one which is probably one more reason I'm going to hell....

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Confirmation Blues

Sigh. I taught confirmation tonight. I have 2 12 year old girls in the class, and I really do enjoy having them in class. But, like most 12 year old girls, attention spans aren't exactly their strong suit. I'm fairly certain they don't hear anything I say, and I know they don't retain any of it. Tonight seemed to be particularly bad, and it didn't help that one of their grandmothers sat at the table with us for the first 15 minutes or so and kept interrupting to basically infer that I was doing it wrong. Again, I say sigh. It's another sleep-over tonight, though, so maybe some niece snuggles will help.

Penguin Pajamas Slumber Party

Yesterday was a lovely day, with much, much time spent with my 4 year old niece. She helped me wrap Christmas presents and decorate the Christmas tree in my room, we ran errands together, and she even "styled" my hair for me in the afternoon (she spun a strand around the top of my head and told me it was "angel" hair because she'd made me a "circle thing" (halo)). Then last night we had a slumber party. We both have pjs with penguins on them, so we had decided awhile ago that we should both wear our penguin pjs and have a slumber party. Since we live in the same house this just means she gets to sleep in my bed instead of her own. She's a toucher when she sleeps with someone, so she always has to have some part of her touching some part of me. Generally this means I have a knee or an elbow jabbing me somewhere, but it's still fun to have her join me for a sleepover. Which reminds me that THESE are the things I'm trying to focus on right now: the happy, sweet things. Not the other things that frequently make me want to kick various adult members of my family. Today I am grateful for 4 year old moments of grace in this chaos.

Monday, December 17, 2007

Christmas Lights

Our neighbor started putting up his Christmas lights around the first of November. I think he's done now. Maybe. I can't decide if the result is festive or overwhelming. I do know I'm glad I don't pay his light bill! :-)

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Just in Time for Christmas

I threw away the Thanksgiving leftovers today. Yes, I realize that Thanksgiving was several weeks ago, and I've been meaning to clean the fridges for awhile now. First I was waiting for garbage day since 7 people and a business create a lot of garbage and our dumpster was full. Garbage day came and went and the dumpster remained full. Turns out the bill hasn't been paid so we have no garbage service (this is a whole other problem in itself as there are control issues around paying the bills). At any rate, the brother went to the dump today, creating some much needed space in the dumpster, so I got the joy of cleaning out all of the leftovers and scraping out mold from all of the containers. Did I mention that I'm cranky these days? So I tried to find the grace in this particular bit of chaos, but I'm not entirely sure what it is. I suppose it's nice that we now have refrigerator room in time for Christmas stuff....

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Advent Crabbiness

So, what does one write in a very first blog post? This is new to me, and yet something seems to be compelling me to write whether or not anyone ever reads any of this. In general news I find myself cranky lately, which is mostly why I named this blog what I did. My life is in transition. I live with my parents, a brother and 3 nieces, all of whom I love dearly, but the house is quite small. I find myself cranky over simple, often stupid, things. But it's also Advent, and a time of waiting and watching, and a time of hope and joy. There are moments in all of this craziness and chaos that I catch glimpses of grace. Those are the moments I'm trying to pay attention to, and those are the moments I'm trying to hang onto instead of those moments when I am cranky. This is partly what I am preaching on tomorrow, so I'd darn well better try to put it into practice in my own day-to-day experiences...