Toddler Tricks - 69: Don't Break Christmas

Problem: It's time to break out the holiday spirit, by which I mean decorations, but your young children will obviously break every single item that can be broken. And this will take just minutes, not weeks. Christmas is a dangerous holiday. Trust me, I know. Pine needles prick, glass bulbs shatter, and that creche your grandmother handed down to you that's been in the family for ages is missing the Baby Jesus. Dear God, why, Christmas, why?SOLUTION:...more

My Favorite Thing about Christmas...

It's November 25th. The day after Thanksgiving. Black Friday. A day of many names. It's the day I realize I have to start thinking seriously about Christmas....more
Yes! I've spent a lot of time thinking about how different her second Christmas was from her ...more

Let's talk Christmas food!

My parents are coming from home for Christmas, and I love to cook for them!First night here – a big meal after a long day on the road - pork loin, homemade applesauce, potato pancakes, roasted root vegetables. Pizza!! We have an annual family cookie decorating party and we order pizza. Yum!...more
That is funny because I've never heard of that tradition. Sounds yummy! We always have WAY too ...more

The Morning After

Well, I finally did it. With the stores moving up Black Friday from 5 a.m. to 3 a.m. to finally midnight, I can actually go. And I did. I skipped WalMart. It was my first year. I didn't need to be trampled. Plus, I didn't do this right. I was just going to see what I could see. I didn't have any pamphlets, or a schedule, or a store map. I was just looking. Hah. ...more

Helping Our Kids (and Ourselves) Avoid the Disease of Stuff This Holiday Season

You've met them and at times, you have been them. Because really, in our culture, that seems to be the battle. It's the Wanna-be-War which rages against us in a world full of stuff. And with Christmas, in all it's "finery," beginning to parade around in stores, I'm reminded of how stuff pulls me in. I was in Costco with all it's neat and tidy aisles, lined with sparkling goodies, and the suck begins....more
The idea of having "stuff" is forgein to many. I work with families in poverty and those at risk ...more

Tuesday's tidbits

Can you tell where this is going? Yes, a roundup of unrelated items, all stuffed into a virtual suitcase of tidbits. In no particular order... -- Holiday whiplash. Turned on the car radio this morning and was startled -- not in a good way -- to hear Christmas music streaming out of the speakers. Come on, man. It was bad enough to go to a coffee shop two weekends ago and see Christmas cookies for sale at the cash register. Do we really need to get into "Deck The Halls" this far out from the holiday? ...more


About five years ago, my sister gave me one of the most ridiculously awesome (or awesomely ridiculous) gifts ever.  I received a pink faux suede jacket with pink leopard trim and matching hat.  Oh, did I mention it was sized to fit a critter from Build-A-Bear Workshop?  Tucked in with the outfit was a gift certificate that would buy me any stuffed animal of my choice.  I was delighted.  I've always been fonder of stuffed animals than is normal and my mania has not diminished with age.  I was immediately drawn to a lovely little leopard doll, c...more

Tis the season...

Its super important you know, That I LOVE Christmas... I love the lights, I love the fresh snow.. I love the excitement... the smell of clove and orange... I love santa... and his damn reindeer... I used to get so excited about the music... Moved to tears by many renditions of O Holy Night......more

How to Keep Black Friday Spending Under Control

I did Black Friday one time. It was a year when we had Thanksgiving in Kansas City without my husband's family for the one and only time I think we've done that since we got married -- we were broke, broke, broke that year, too broke to take a car ride/cheap hotel Thanksgiving roadie, and I was willing to try anything to stretch my holiday dollars farther. I got some good deals, but I also threw up in my mouth a few times at people's behavior, so now I try to avoid Black Friday at all costs. However, I am not going to judge anyone who wants to do it. So let's talk about how to do it best! ...more

Holiday Musings