Archive for the 'relatives' Category

happy thanksgiving

dear world,

we cooked thanksgiving dinner at our house this year. my mother came as well as my sister, her new husband and their new baby. all in all, it was a pretty weird experience.

i guess i had my hopes up too high that we would get to spend some time with each other before the meal then sit down and catch up over dinner. instead, my mother arrived about 30 minutes before we planned to eat and when i called and texted my sister at quarter til, she didn’t pick up. i figured we’d just eat without them if they didn’t arrive. but they did. and we ate.

i’ve known my family forever, yet we had nothing to say at the dinner table. it felt awkwardly quiet. MHM saved the day and asked my sister’s husband something and then we got rolling. nana held the baby all through dinner and nobody ate much of anything. i thought it tasted pretty good. i certainly ate my fill.

and now we begin the eating of the leftovers. tomorrow, we’re having turkey soup with the stock we made from the turkey carcass. i’m really looking forward to that.



ps- i’m really glad to have met my little nephew, but it’s a bit odd to see my sister as a mother.


the baby blanket project

dear world,

i tend to be intermittently crafty. i get a really good idea! then i get all the supplies i need to execute my really good idea! and then i lose steam.

for example, when i learned my sister was pregnant, i went out a bought this beautiful fabric to make her a baby blanket. i got one pattern for the front, a flannel pattern for the back and i even got batting to put inside to make it nice and warm. (please note, i have never actually made a baby blanket with batting inside before. i usually just stitch two pieces of material together and call it a day.)

i guess with this being my first nephew, i thought i’d make something really special. i’m pretty sure i got all my supplies in the spring. my sister had her baby a week ago today. hooray!

now, i guess i’d better get to work on that blanket…

yesterday, i did so great. i quilted a little, i trimmed the edges, i even ironed it. i got it all ready for me to finish up today. i planned to use the quilt binding my mom suggested. i uncovered the sewing machine. i got out the iron and ironing board. i got it out the binding and looked at it. then i looked at my fledging blanket and realized that this plan would not work. i called the sewing shop and she told me what to do which involves me purchasing more material in order to make the binding myself. (also something i have never done before.)

i got in my car and realized: i have no gas. i have no money. i will have both those things tomorrow.

i got back out of my car, put everything away again and will try again tomorrow. however, i did go ahead and send my sister her happy baby card and a target gift card in case this turns out to be a christmas present instead. (or just too awful to give as a gift. what if it looks like somebody who has no idea what she’s doing made it?! what kind of auntie would i be then?)

haphazardly sewing,


a thank you note

dear grandma m,

thank you for coming to stay with us last week when i got home from the hospital. i forget sometimes how willful and wonderful my children are and also, at times, how exhausting they can be. at least with 2 people paying constant attention to them we all have a better chance at getting to bed before 10pm.

thank you for cleaning my house. there are so many ways that it could have been misinterpreted as though my mother in law thinks my house is dirty/messy/i don’t do enough. but, you cleaned my house so that it would be nice for me when i got home. you even cleaned the bathrooms and the stove. that’s about the nicest cleaning anyone’s ever done for me, especially since i’m not supposed to do it right now.

mostly thank you for being helpful. just for helping when we need help and not having your feelings hurt when we don’t. thanks for being around to pitch in and understanding when i want to do it myself. for taking my suggestions and giving it a shot when i know full well you raised 3 boys by yourself during the same years we’re in with my girls. thanks for not thinking i’m bossy when i want to try it my way. and thanks for getting it done anyway when your way works better.



easter egg hunt

dear world,

our neighborhood is so wonderful. as i sit here writing this, our neighbors have gathered in the park across the street to parade around in fancy hats then (by age group) participate in our annual easter egg hunt. V is there with nana and pop.

i’m inside because inexplicably, baby N has decided to take a long morning nap. in my mind, i’d rather she sleep and miss the festivities than wake her up. not worth it.

nana offered to stay inside so i could go, but that seemed a little rude to make her miss the fun that she came all the way over here for. MHM came back inside (V refused to wear the hat) and asked me why i didn’t want to go. i do want to go, but i want N to nap more. i can hear the bunny hop playing outside. i’m sure they’re having a wonderful time. i honestly can’t wait to hear all about it.

when they come back, we’ve got lots of easter fun on the docket. we’re going to dye easter eggs. we’re going to bake bread for tomorrow’s dinner. i’m sure we can think of other easter things to do. V is really excited about this holiday. i think the easter bunny will have to hide some eggs for her to find tomorrow morning. super fun.

enjoying a festive holiday weekend,


holiday expectations

hello world,

i’ve been thinking a lot about our upcoming holiday travel and visits with extended family. this year, we’re spending actual christmas with MHM’s folks, eating christmas dinner with the other side of his family and celebrating again the day after christmas with his mother’s extended family.

MHM’s parents are divorced and i’ve conducted the negotiations surrounding which meals we eat with which family members this year. it’s remarkably complex, but i think we’ve finally nailed it down. the last pin to put into place was my sister, aunt b.

we’re celebrating with my side of the family the first weekend in january which means nana won’t be there christmas morning. aunt b, however, lives within an hour of grandma and grandpa’s house so naturally i invited her to spend christmas morning with us.

i assumed she would want to do this. after talking with her for a long time last night, it turns out i was wrong. in my mind, what else would you do christmas morning than wake up with whatever family lived near by, open presents and have some breakfast? since our side of the family isn’t celebrating until january, it simply didn’t occur to her that this should happen. why would i come that morning? she asked.

for me, christmas morning is a time to spend with whatever family you have about and take your time enjoying the moment. i am generally the least festive of anyone i’m related to (by marriage or by birth) so it really surprised me that not everyone thinks like i do on the subject. i am going to try to create a nice, relaxed environment for V christmas morning with whoever happens to be there. as long as she feels special and gets some sense of the magic of that morning, i’ll be satisfied.

expecting the unexpected,


aunties of all sorts

hello world,

my very good friend is here for a visit this week and i’m so glad. the morning before her plane landed, V and i were looking at the pictures on the refrigerator and pointing out all the people. who’s that? uncle c. who’s that? aunti m. who’s coming to visit us tonight? aunti m!

often, even when V knows people she’ll be shy when she first sees them again. not so with aunti m. she talks, cuddles, reads books, colors, puts her puppy to bed. aunti m just slips right into our little family life and is so comfortable that V can’t resist.

years ago, when V was quite small, aunti m got her a t-shirt in london that says if you think i’m cute, you should see my auntie. it doesn’t get much better than that.

loving aunti time,


i hope you don’t turn into that kind of mom

dear world,

i must be saying things out loud in a funny tone because i’ve had two separate people warn me against turning into that kind of mom in the past two days.

instance 1:

we’ve signed V up for gymnastics. while trying to figure out which single day of the week we could make it happen, if we could even make it happen, if we should just wait until summer when MHM is off school, the conversation turned to swimming lessons. i have super fond memories of taking swim lessons every summer. it was part of what summer meant to me. MHM says, i just don’t want her to be over-scheduled. seriously? she’s not actually doing anything yet let alone too many things.

instance 2:

in conversation with nana this morning, i shared with her that V is following in her auntie’s footsteps by taking a gymnastics class. what should a kid wear to gymnastics anyways? leggings and a t-shirt? the website said a leotard or t-shirt and shorts would do. nana says, i hope you’re not going to be one of those moms who runs out to buy a fancy leotard for every activity.  i just wanted to clothe my child appropriately and was hoping nana could pick up a pair of shorts for V while she was out this weekend.

for the record, i want V to play, have friends and not wear the complete wrong thing that would get in the way of either of the first two things. i apparently need to articulate those wishes using different words to make it clear that i’m not that kind of mom. i’ve never done this before. i don’t already know how to do it.

trying to figure it out like everyone else,