Saturday, December 29, 2012

Still good to know I have more to learn about him...

You are driving down the highway, peacefully anticipating the outing ahead.  When suddenly:


Those two simple sounds...yet, when uttered in that tone, suddenly you are filled with dread.

"What?"  You ask, hoping for yet fearing the answer.

He sits in silence, overwhelmed by the shock and terror of his thoughts.  Your mind races.  What could this possibly be?  Is it your imagination, or does his face seem to grow more pensive, more petrified, more horrified...He's mentioned some stress at work, a possible health problem...could there be more he's been too afraid to share?

You try to await his answer, but it is so long in coming.  "What?!?"  You ask again, imploring his answer.

Yet he sits silent, driving the car, alone with his trepidation...

"Mommy?"  A voice calls from the back seat.  "Why does this book have a funny mark here?"

It's the back seat?  How can you possibly see in the back seat?  More importantly, what does this have to do with the situation developing in the front seat?  "Honey, I don't know.  Let's check it out when we get there."

"Crap."  It's the first syllable he's uttered since beginning this stressful odyssey.  Perhaps he's finally ready share?  Does he seem slightly less catatonic?  

"But it's just right there, Mommy.  Haven't you read this book before?"

Yes, and I've memorized every mark on every page throughout.  Wait until you see the one on page's a doozy!  "No, honey."  You reply, frayed nerves jangling, "I mean, yes, I've read the book, but I don't know-"

"Mama!  Mama!"  Another child interjects, "Look!  What was that?"  She gestures to the entire world whizzing past her window, confident you know EXACTLY to which "that" she refers.  You want to respond, but your husband sighs, rubs his lip, and looks distraught, shifting slightly in his seat.

"I DON'T KNOW," you shriek hysterically.  "CAN'T YOU SEE I'M TRYING TO TALK TO YOUR FATHER?!?"

Silent, chastened, your children retreat to their seats.  Anxiously you return to your husband.  "WHAT?!?  WHAT?!?  WHY DID YOU SAY UH-OH?!?"

"Huh?"  He says absently, turning to look at you.  "What do you mean?"

Now he's giving you that slightly alarmed "Is-she-losing-it" look.  Taking a deep breath, and fighting for calm, you say, "Earlier you said, '' with great concern.  What is going on?!???"

"Oh," he says, "That.  Nothing.  Just thinking about whether or not I put my new pants in the laundry.  I think I forgot to do that."

You blank...what the?  Seriously?!?  "Oh, well, the way you said, '" I thought..."

"Oh, that's not my serious tone," he replies.  "Don't'll know when it's serious."

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas 2012

Merry Christmas one and all!  Just a quick blog today.  I got a netbook for Christmas!  Hooray!!  I also got an Ipod touch - I'm a lucky woman.  My favorite gift, I must admit, though, is the plush red angry bird that shrieks in victory when you push the button.  WHOOHOO-HOO!  I am a lucky woman.

This was a big Christmas for the girls.  If you asked the kids what they wanted from Santa, they would reply as follows:

A: I want marshmallows, candy canes, cookies, and a piano.
B: I want marshmallows, candy canes, cookies, and a xylophone
C: I want more furniture for my doll house, Barbie Dolls, Angry Birds for my DSi...and a guitar.
A: Oh, and a drum
B: Yeah, a drum

See a pattern?  It's a musical Christmas this year!  The problem with kid's musical instruments is that they are rarely in tune/tunable.  I don't have perfect pitch by any means, but I'm pretty good at knowing what is in tune (and vice versa).  It can be physically painful to hear that sour note(s).  On the other hand, the problem with real musical instruments is size, cost, maintenance and care...

Well, that solves that one.

So Christmas day dawns, and Santa proves that (s)he is, once again, the (wo)man.  As per tradition, it starts with Santa leaving a path of candy canes down the hall and to the family room, where the unwrapped Santa toys await.  The girls get into the doorway of the family room, and Twin A stops dead in her tracks.  There it sits.  A shiny black child's piano, complete with stool and music stand.  The other girls come barreling in, but she's stock-still in shock.  It lasts all of 30 seconds, but definitely long enough to let us know that Santa did a good job.  Finally she says, "A piano...look...a piano..."  It seems like underwhelm, but the complete withdraw lets us know the exact opposite.  She can barely take it in.  The crowning glory is the small bag of marshmallows and cookies on top...with a candy cane peeking out...

Twin B, meanwhile, zeros right in on that xylophone.  It's just one of those little kid ones, but she's in heaven...for about 15 seconds, and then she zooms over to the dollhouse.  The dollhouse was not an anticipated gift.  Our chiropractor's daughter was giving it away, and he offered it to us for free, because he's that kind of wonderful, sweet, generous person.  It came complete with some pre-mussed Barbie dolls and a few pieces of furniture.  It has a small chip on the top, but the girls haven't even seen that yet.  And check out that couch!  Perfect place to stash a bag of marshmallows, cookies, and...

C has the smallest of the piles.  She actually went straight past it to the dollhouse.  When she found out it wasn't for her, she was disappointed.  She has one at Gama's house,  though, and she was assured her sisters would give her a chance to check it out.  She turns dejectedly to her pile...and shrieks with joy over the mini-guitar sitting on her pile.  WHOOHOO!  Then she takes a good look, and realizes it's a Barbie and Dollhouse furniture kind of Christmas!  Life is good!  A minivan for the dollhouse AND a car for Barbie?  WHOA!

It took almost two hours for the girls to see anything outside of the piano, xylophone, guitar, and percussive instruments (the guitar was part of a set that came with a bongo drum, tambourine, wood block/zither, egg-shaped maracas, and finger cymbals).  It was guess...Christmas?  They are banging away, shouting, "I'm playing MUSIC!"  All I could think is, "If you become punk musicians I may have to disown you..."  The DVDs, Pigeon Books, dress up clothes, etc. are NOTHING compared to these wonderful gifts.  The piano and guitar especially.  Mommy knitted cool sparkly ruffle scarves.  Whatever!  Do they sing?  Make music?  Drive mommy incredibly insane?  Then what good is some dumb fashionable scarf?

It has been proven that men are far better than women at selective hearing and ignoring certain sound ranges...I am desperate to learn this trick...but very happy at how happy the girls are with their gifts.  Now to figure out where the heck to put all of this stuff!  We need a new house just for the toys!!

Daddy?  Oh, he got a blue-ray player, windows 8, gift cards, boxers...and I framed some of his old photos.  He's hard at work putting together Barbie sets and cussing at small plastic tabs that refuse to slide into slot A...

Merry Christmas!