Monday, December 21, 2009

A List

It's the end of the year and the media seems to be full of lists so I am jumping on the "laziest way to write" bandwagon. Why should I try being any better than CNN? Who do I think I am, anyway? This is for the best.

  • Jack got his stitches out on Thursday. According to Matt, he didn't even flinch when they tugged on them to get them out. Tough guy. I wouldn't know because I wasn't there. No way. That is definitely a "dad" kind of task.
  • My friend Blake finally showed his face after being away at Grad School for the last 4 months. Don't feel bad for him. It wasn't like he was so totally engrossed in his studies that he just couldn't make the hour and a half drive to Austin. He went to almost every A&M football game, including the away games. He also went to Disney World. DISNEY WORLD. In case you didn't know, Florida isn't an hour and a half away from Austin. Yet he seemed to be able to make it to Orlando and not to Austin. In FOUR months. He clearly missed us dearly. We gave him a hard time about it when we went out for happy hour. It was great fun and I felt like we picked up right where we left off.
  • Blake totally made up for being MIA by letting us park our car at his parent's house so we wouldn't have to pay for airport parking. Not only did that save us a wad of cash, but it also allowed us to be dropped off at the door rather than having to drag 2 kids, 2 strollers, 3 suitcases and 2 carry on bags through the parking lot and on a shuttle to the airport. Just getting the kids from the curb to the check-in desk caused us to sweat profusely, so we are grateful for the lift from Blake.
  • And by "us" I mean me and my mom. Matt is still at home so don't try and rob my house because you think we aren't home. I'm smart enough to know not to blog about not being home while I am actually gone and just leave my tiny house with nothing valuable inside open to crooks and robbers. I care too much about our laminate floors and stained counter tops to do that. Besides, one look at my master shower and you would mistake our house for a frat house and leave immediately for fear that someone might slip something into your drink.
  • By the way, the whole reason we were even at the airport is because we are in Illinois visiting my brother's family. Maybe you recall me talking about them before. This is Jack's first visit up north and his first time seeing snow. It was snowing when we got off the airplane and he loved sticking his tongue out to catch snowflakes. He ran around in the snow as if it wasn't slippery at all and caused me a minor heart attack because I think we can all agree that he is accident prone (see: just about every post dedicated to Jack).
  • Christmas at my brother's house can only be described as overwhelming. In fact, I think if an alien who had never experienced Christmas before were to be sent to this house to get an understanding of what the holiday was like, the report back to the mother ship would probably just be a picture of him curled up in the fetal position. First of all, there are a lot of kids here. Between my brother's four, my two, and all the kids in town that are friends with my nieces, this house is never quiet. Not at midnight, not at 6am. NOT. EVER. Secondly, because of the large number of people, there are a large number of presents under the tree. Almost an entire room full of presents. It is an embarrassment of riches. Each kid has 3 sets of grandparents, a great grandmother, God parents, best friends, cousins, gifts from friends, neighbors and so on. Even Annabelle's gymnastics teacher gave her a gift tonight. It is crazy.
  • But even crazier is what happens on Christmas Eve after church when they open presents. It is hard to describe the scene at this house when 4-6 kids start to rip through the wrapping paper to check out their gifts. You can't expect little ones to sit patiently while each person opens one gift at a time. I mean, you definitely won't find a bunch of people calmly sitting around in Christmas sweaters sipping hot cocoa while they go around in a circle opening a gift and showing the group while everyone ooohs and ahhs. Not in a million years. Instead, it is a total free-for-all. You are lucky if they stop to look at who the gift is to before they rip through the paper. And you better not dare give a gift card at a time like this or it will get thrown away for sure. It doesn't stand a chance. By the time it is all over, the room is filled halfway to the ceiling with used wrapping paper and at least one kid is buried somewhere in the pile. Generally everyone survives, but it is touch-and-go for a while. I will make it a point to keep an eye on little Jack so he doesn't get trampled or lost in the chaos. It is the funnest thing you have ever experienced but if you are one of those people that likes things to be orderly (ahem, dad), you might need to take a Xanax.
  • I will be sure to document with pictures because I know there are some of you out there that don't believe me. Some people are thinking that I am taking some creative license in this story. Those people would be wrong, but you don't have to take my word for it. I'll have evidence when I return home from our visit.
  • In other news, I continued a family tradition by going to the 2 little girls' classes today at school to read some Christmas stories. I did this with the older 2 when they were in pre-school and grade school so I was excited to have the chance to read in the younger ones classes. There had to be some good reason why the school district would make these kids come to school during the week of Christmas. RIDICULOUS.
  • Anyway, things were great in Annabelle's class. All the pre-schoolers loved good ole' Aunt Amy. They couldn't get enough of me. Savannah's class was a little more reserved. No one tried to kiss me or anything. I guess first graders are much more suave than pre-schoolers. I thought everything had gone well with the first graders, too. After school when I asked Savannah if she liked my visit, she said yes and that the only weird thing was when a girl next to her wondered out loud if I was fat or not. I responded that she should have seen me 4 months ago; there wouldn't have been a question. The girl is 6 so I really shouldn't be bothered by this but I can't seem to shake the feeling that all I want to do tomorrow is go back up to school and sit on that kid. Jerk.

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