Saturday, December 29, 2012


It takes a very manly baby to rock pink pj's!  On Christmas, no less!  Tommy managed to unwrap a few presents--much more than Dani or Tori did...
 And Santa showed up and left cool stuff for the kiddos!
 They had a blast.
 We had Christmas dinner at my cousin's.  It was hard to get the kids to be still for a photo op!
 Dinner at the kiddie table rocked!
 And the tree--my little cuties.
Happy holidays all!

Monday, December 24, 2012

Twas the night before Christmas

Everyone is in bed.  Big Man will be headed to work in a few hours.  Time to get things set up and make it look like Christmas.
The girls are so excited.  We baked cookies for Santa.  Bites have been strategically taken from them.
The house is set up.
Santa even left the kids a note.

 I can't wait to see their little faces in the morning.
Merry Christmas, my babies.  Mommy Santa loves you!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Silly, silly, silly!

 Funny things said this week.
Last night at dinner, Dani told us her tummy hurt and she didn't want to eat any more (after not eating much).  Big Man gave her the talk about not eating dinner meant she didn't get to eat dessert later.  I asked her what her tummy felt like.  She replied, "It hurts, and it feels like it's mad at me, and it feels like it's mad at my whole body."

The night before, we were sitting at the dinner table and Dani said something to me, and part of my response included calling her "honey".  As soon as I said it, she asked, "Why did you call me 'honey'?"  I responded something along the lines of she is my little honey, acknowledging that I usually call Big Man honey.  "Can we just stick with Dani?" she replied?
Meanwhile, Tori found a left over set of vampire teeth from Halloween.
And Tommy loves to put the girls' dress-up outfits on his head and play Chief!

They are counting down to Christmas.  Only one chocolate left in the advent calendar.  

Monday, December 17, 2012

Thank God, I've never known.

This week has been filled with talk of violence.  A terrible tragedy occurred in Connecticut, minutes from where I grew up.  Many of my cousins attended school in Newtown, and are thankfully grown.  I've read dozens of facebook posts from friends who have been so shaken by the news, even though they live hundreds or even thousands of miles away.  I've struggled to figure out why I wasn't more affected by it on a personal level.

I can only say that I am thankful.  Thankful to not really have felt the pain or fear that so many of my friends have felt just from watching the news unfold.  Someone mentioned to me in court this afternoon that, with kids at the ages mine are, I must be terrified.  My reply seemed to surprise those in the conversation, no, I am not afraid.

Perhaps it comes from having a spouse in law enforcement.  Every night, he leaves, off to a dangerous place where bad guys have guns, knives, are high on drugs, and people act out of desperation, anger, or just because they are damaged souls.  If I ever really let myself think about what Big Man deals with on a daily basis, I'd probably never sleep, as I would be filled with worry.  So I don't worry, I can't let myself worry.  I kiss him goodbye each night, tell him I love him, and think of other things.

One night the doorbell rang at around midnight.  It was then that I worried.  Called out of a sound sleep by the doorbell when your husband is a cop is the worst way to wake up.  I watch TV--they only come to your house to give you the kind of news you can't deliver over the phone.  It was the longest and most horrible trip downstairs I have ever made.  Every possible nightmarish scenario ran threw my head as I unlocked the deadbolt, tears in my eyes.  And then I saw a man with a pizza carrier walking across my driveway to my neighbor's house.  It was then that I sobbed.  I called the Big Man, crying, professing my profound fear, my utter love, and my thankfulness that it was just the wrong doorbell.  I hope mine is always the wrong doorbell.

Perhaps it is because I've never had to leave my children anywhere.  Sure, we've got the twice a week sitter, but she only watches my children in her home.  I've never needed a swiper card to get in, or had to provide a list of authorized people to pick up my children.  I've never had to leave them somewhere where the doors locked automatically behind me.  I've never had to worry about the place and the people that are caring for my children.  I am thankful.  Thankful because I can't imagine what it must have been like to know something terrible was happening in a place my children were, in a place where dozens of safety measures, and locks and cameras, and adults were, but couldn't keep them safe.

Because like every parent, I love nothing more than to see the sunlight through my son's hair.
To have a silly family dinner with all three of my little monkeys.
And to see how happy it makes them when they receive unexpected gifts.
Thank God, I've never known.  Thank God, I'm not afraid.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Christmas Card Outtakes.

It's that time of year again!  Time to herd cats try to get my kids to (a) sit still; (b) look at the camera at the same time; and (c) make some type of smiling face.
We begin with the kissing of the baby brother, and his "help me" look.
 Tommy tries to flee.
 You can make me sit on this couch but you can't make me smile.
 Dani decides to sing some karaoke.
 Meh.  We will not smile.
 This is utter torture, Mommy.
 My foot says, "Merry Christmas!"
We took 65 photos.  Four were passable enough to make it to a photo upload.
Ho, ho, ho!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Dani turns 4.

Dearest Dani, how can you be 4 already?  I swear, just a few days ago, you were just a little bitty bit, red, and screamy, an angry little newborn.  And you were angry, probably, because your mommy had no idea what she was doing.  Yours was the first diaper I ever changed.
And the time has just flown, my little sweetie.
You were, and still are, our cautious child.  You crawled until you could walk without falling.  None of the stumbling, falling, figuring-it-out that new babies do when trying to walk.  When it looked hard or too far away, you crawled.
You weren't quick to speak.  Again, you were figuring it out.  Sure, there was a word, here and there, but they were slow to come.  I used to joke that you'd have your Helen Keller moment where language would just make sense to you and you'd start talking.  And you did.  And now you never stop talking.  And your words amaze me.
You are loving and kind.  You are the friendly child at the store that says hello to everyone and asks their name.  You are happy to help, always.
You've picked me a thousand dandelions, because you think they are beautiful.  I think they are beautiful because they are from you, wilted, and with short stems, handed to me by a little cherub whose nose is yellow with pollen.
You are a master of disguise.  Always game for a costume or an adventure.  Many days you whisper to me, "Mommy, I'm not Dani," and you wait until I can guess what character you've assumed for the moment.
Your first reaction is to be afraid of the unknown.  From the spider on the web, to the hairball under the couch, your first reaction is retreat, rather than bravado.  But you face your fears.  The cat, who I know secretly terrifies you, is met with a stubborn smile, and a "Hello kitty, I love you," as you pet him.  And then he moves his paw too quickly, and you can't hide that it's scary, but still you sit, and assure him that he's a good cat and he's your friend, as you are internally assuring yourself that he is indeed, and won't hurt you.

You usually tell the truth.  Other times, you blame Tori.  She doesn't seem to mind--and will often apologize for the things she didn't do.
You love to be the focus.  As Tori began to stumble through the alphabet and counting, you saw our encouragement.  You were right along side her, saying it perfectly, not to help her, but so you'd hear our praises too.  Sometimes, it's got to be hard to be the oldest.  There's always someone who is just a little bit more needy than you, so we have to tell you to wait.  And you do, usually with a smile, because you know we'll have some special time just for you, a little bit later.
Yesterday, when we were driving to the store so you could pick out your first Christmas ornament, I told you that we would get one every year, so that when you were a big girl, you could have them all for your first Christmas tree.  You insisted that you would not--that you would always want to live with me, and have the same Christmas tree as me and Daddy.  As much as I know that answer is because you are four, it made me intensely happy, as I know the inevitable day it is no longer your wish will cause me intense sadness.
And you are bright, so bright.  It never stops being overwhelmingly wonderful being your mommy.
Dani, you are my light.  You bring us so much joy my four year old girl. 
Happy birthday.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Party time!

We had a little birthday party for Dani's 4th yesterday.  I won't wax nostalgic tonight, as her real birthday is next weekend.  Suffice to say, we had a lot of fun!
 You know it's a party when Big Man puts on a party hat!
 And Tommy can rock a tiara!
 Tori says, "I'm too sexy for my party hat, too sexy for my party hat, so sexy it hurts."
The birthday girl had a lot of fun!
And each kid got a candle in their cupcake!
Tori, getting her festive on.
Happy (almost) birthday, Dani!