Christmas Shopping Continued

Our oldest daughter, Halie will be 8 on December 7, next week.  We have all of our Christmas shopping done for our three daughters (whew!), but we had still not purchased Halie’s birthday gift.  We are grateful and consider it a blessing that she was born on December 7 and not Jan 8, when she was supposed to arrive.  We do not group her birthday together with our Christmas celebration, as we have taught all of our daughters that Christmas is a time to celebrate Jesus’ birthday.  The one time we actually get gifts on someone else’s birthday! That said:

Halie really, really, really wants a Bratz doll.  We’ve told her that we’d like to wait until she’s at least ten years old.  If we intended to buy her a Bratz doll  today, however, this was the store to purchase it at.  There were aisles upon aisles of Bratz dolls and theiraccoutrements.  As we exited the first aisle, I saw 24-inch, plush, poseable dolls.  My husband, walking behind me, with his eyes wide, said, “Those girls are dressed like mini hoochie-mamas! Where is the Bratz Pimp doll with his pimp hat and cane?”  I laughed until I couldn’t breathe… Then decided we’d better buy Halie the magic-makeup Barbie styling head. 

Mission accomplished.  Maybe not politically correct, but side-splitting nonetheless!

So, my readers (both of you): How’s your holiday shopping going? 

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Things I’m thankful for:

xmas06web.jpg click for a close-up!

  • My sink laden with dirty dishes reminds me that my family eats at home, the meals that I have slaved over   prepared and cooked  served.
  • The endless flow of dirty laundry being washed and dried, then folded or hung and put away comes because my husband and I wear clean clothing everyday and also because we have three kids who like to ‘try on’ outfits then toss them on the floor   dress up in school clothes and then mudwrestle in the backyard  active daughters.

Today, I am thankful for a husband who suggested that we team up to do the oh-dark-hundred  day-after-Thanksgiving  Black Friday Christmas Shopping, which meant waking before any normal human being dawn in an effort to save hundreds of dollars in an effort to check off every person on our list for presents this year   gifts for our daughters and each other.  We were out at 5AM, shopped and bought at three stores, singlehandedly stimulated the economy, had all our shopping done and were enjoying an IHOP breakfast at 7AM.  We were home before our daughters had even woken and realized that we were gone!  Just kidding.  Grandma and Grandpa generously kept our three daughters overnight (loving thanks to Grandpa and Grandma).  Our girls’ gifts are taken care of, and I got my husband a five-burner, 32 000 BTU, stainless-steel propane grill *insert ‘Tool Time’ grunt here*.  The rest of the presents will probably be in the form of Gift Cards, since I know that I can be certain that the family members are getting exactly the gifts that they want.

I am doubly thankful that my daughters were willing to dress in their new holiday nightgowns (special thanks to Rainie!) and sit on the hearth while I attempted to snap photos worthy of being enclosed with Christmas cards.  Two of the girls L-O-V-E posing for photos, one would rather have bamboo shoots driven under her tiny nails.  I’ll let you guess which one dislikes cameras. You can see a few from the series on my Flickr page, plus I’ve added a few from my husband’s car show win!   

The Ghost of Thanksgiving Past…

Note from the Editor:  This post is Rated ‘R’ for use of the F-word!

1125_burnt_turkey.jpegAutumn of 1994, I owned a new Saturn with a leaky rear window seal.  How did I know it was leaking, you ask? Dallas, Texas had a long dry spell that fall, so when we finally had a storm, in November, and my back seat was wet,  I surmised that there might be a leak.  So I did what any naive, single girl would do: I took my car back to the dealership where I had purchased the Saturn and reported the problem.  Of course, I finally waited for a day off work so I could drive the car across town and we’d had no rain for a few days, so the seat was dry when I got there.  After four hours in the waiting area, the technician told me that he was unable to recreate the soggy backseat (using the washbay at the dealership).  He basically patted me on the head and sent me away.  Grrrr!

The next time it rained ( a month later), my backseat was wet again.  I did not pass go, did not collect $250 dollars – I drove straight to the dealership. The same day.  This time, the technician told me that my backseat was NOT wet, that he was very busy with legitimate customer complaints, and pointed me to the door.  Say it with me now: NO HE DI-IN’T!

I asked to see the General Manager of the Saturn dealership, who obviously had a chat with the technician before meeting with me.   The GM walked into his office, where I had been waiting, and before he even sat down, he was already asking me what I was trying to ‘squeeze’ them for.  Huh?  I explained to him how I felt about the way I had been treated by the Service Department, and how I was offended by the question he had just asked me.  I asked him to come out to my car with me, and he agreed.  When we got out to the car, he felt the backseat and told me it was not even damp.  Of course, I asked him to put his Dockers-clad ass in that backseat to prove it was indeed not wet.  Not surprisingly, the GM was not willing to do that for me.  Neither was the technician!  The GM and I walked back to his office, sat down, and he asked me again to explain what I wanted. I calmly explained that I was only interested in having my records transferred to a Saturn dealership a little closer to my home and a couple of oil changes thrown in for compensation for all the aggravation with their particular service department.   The GM agreed to send my records over to the other Saturn dealership, but felt that the oil changes were asking too much.  We went over and over the obvious disservice I had endured, but the manager would not budge.  He finished by telling me, “I think we’re done here. Have a Happy Thanksgiving.”  To which I responded, “Fuck you.  I hope your turkey burns.” Then I got up and marched out of his office.  

I did finally get my car window seal repaired – at another dealership.  My family never celebrates Thanksgiving without making me share the story again and I’m certain that this year will be no different.  Even twelve years later, it still brings a smile.

Have a Blessed Thanksgiving.  I hope your turkey does NOT burn!

What’s the obsession with PS3?

My husband stopped by Best Buy on Thursday to pick up some thigamajig for his Power Point presentation at work this morning.  My husband (DH) tells me that he was thinking ‘Thursday morning 10AM, surely the store is open and not too busy – I’ll be in and out in no time.’

When he pulled into the parking lot of the gigantic store, there was plenty of room to park, but DH noticed many tents set up along the sidewalk near the entrance to Best Buy.  Of course, he’s asking himself “When the hell did Best Buy start selling camping gear?!”  As he got closer, he realized that there were people inside those tents.  With sleeping bags, pillows and ice chests.  Turns out they were actually camping out, waiting for today, to be among the first to purchase a PlayStation 3.

My husband said there were teenagers, which he expected.  The folks that disturbed him were the middle-aged men wearing t-shirts emblazoned with ‘Captain Kirk Rocks’ or ‘ Guns’N’Roses 1987 Appetite for Destruction Tour’ that were waiting along with the teenagers.   Not sure whether to 1) be weirded out by the grown-ups missing work to pay $600 dollars for a base unit (no games, mind you), 2) bow in respect for their lifelong devotion to video games or 3) feel pity for the lives they might have had if they had simply stopped. playing. freaking. video. games.  

Public Playground Amnesia

It struck yet again.  Yesterday.  I told you that I’d forget all the blood and tears and maternal terror that happened the last time I took the girls to the local park.  Three weeks to the day.   I previously predicted that only a week would pass before I suffered Playground Amnesia.  I am proud of myself (and my daughters) for surviving for such a long stretch without visiting the park.

I am also proud of my daughters for maintaining their manners and staying within my line of  sight.  We were also able to make a relatively quick departure – no tears OR blood this time.  Although I DID have to count to three as I was walking toward the SUV with Catie and Rosie in tow,  in a successful maneuver that brought Halie running to the car…  The unspoken threat of being left behind has always been an effective motivator with my children.   What can I say?  I told my M-I-L today that I’m certainly ‘paying for my raising’.  She just smiled and agreed by nodding her head.

All Saints Day!

From this day forth, my family shall recognize this date as:

dscf0121.jpgBirthday Boy Aidan Patrick Christopher’s Birthday!

My incredible nephew is one year old today.  He’s already walking.  I have warned my sister that the progression from ‘walking’ to ‘running’  to ‘running-away-from-mommy-in-public-places-where-she-cannot-scream-at-me’ happens at light speed.  She has already earned the Medal of Motherhood in her first year of motherhood: my sister cared for her son, her husband and her sick self while they were all battling the gruesome stomach flu.  I won’t gross you out with the details.  Just suffice it to say that my sister has cleaned vomit out of her shoes that was not her own…

My daughters had a fun time Trick-or-Treating on their Grandma and Grandpa’s block for Halloween.  While I captured some good photos of Halie (Guinevere) and Rosie (Nurse), I did not get a good one of Catie (Princess Jasmine).