Friday, December 17, 2010

Christmas Ugly

Because of the sickness that has run back and forth through our house since the week before Thanksgiving, I had to put off a lot of my Christmas shopping until today. I had 4 hours to cover 7 people. I was so happy to have everyone well and be out of the house on a sunny day that I was able to do it all with a smile on my face. I always hate to see people running through Walmart with frowns on their faces and a cart full of presents. It is suppose to be better to give than receive so, in theory, our faces should be as bright buying the presents as they are when opening them. For me, the trouble comes when I have the perfect gift picked out for someone and something is standing between me and that gift. I came very close to that today. I knew exactly what the kids were going to get Rocky. I went to Walmart and it had even been marked down $10. Naturally, they were sold out. The very nice clerk checked around for me and found that the Windward Parkway store had 12 left. I drove all the way to Alpharetta and practically had to mug a clerk to get them to get it out of the magic case for me. Then I noticed it was still listed at the regular price. I asked if maybe the sign had just not changed. The clerk casually informs me that sometimes one store will have a sale they don't and oh yeah, they won't price match another Walmart. I'm pretty sure my eye started twitching at this point. I realized I'd be getting no where with this clerk so I went ahead to the check out readying my argument and threats. I could feel the ugly rising up inside me. Maybe the new clerk saw it too because he hit the scanner really quickly and seemed very relieved to see it ring up at the sales price. I am very happy to say that I never once got rude and didn't even say anything sarcastic, but certainly not because of my own power. So, today I am thankful that I have been able to avoid the Christmas ugly.
Are you maintaining a merry and bright demeanor while shopping this year or has something ugly gotten in your way?

Friday, December 10, 2010

1 in 150

Did you know that your odds of having a child with autism are 1 in 150? That is a pretty shocking number. Do you know how I learned this? A t-shirt from Band of Angels. They also taught me that your odds for Down Syndrome is 1 in 800.

I really think this is one of the smartest designs for an awareness shirt I have seen, and today, thanks to Band of Angels and my friend Tiffany, we all have a chance to win one. Just head on over to her blog and find out how.

Band of Angels is an amazing organization dedicated to being an advocate for children with Down Syndrome, autism, and other disabilities. It is a really uplifting site meant to encourage parents and shines a brilliant light on a subject that a lot of people fear.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Why I'm Exhausted

I'm having trouble keeping my eyes open today thanks to some vivid, wacky dreaming again. Since I wasn't animate or an alien with a robot arm, this isn't even close to my strangest dream. I'm glad I didn't live in the 1690's or I'd have to hide my overactive dream life for fear of being burned at the stake.

Last night's dream was a lot like a bad Lifetime movie. There was a wealthy couple with two sons who were in the 8 to 12 age range. The couple decided that they really wanted to try to have a baby girl, but because of their age they needed a surrogate mother to carry the child. While the woman was carrying the child the wife died leaving the father to care for the sons and unborn child. The surrogate ended up becoming a sort of nanny. The people in their social circle spent a great deal of time gossiping about the situation. In the end it comes to light that the mother had realized she was dying and had picked the woman to be a surrogate in more than one way. The birth of the baby, which is a girl, bonds them all together and they live happily ever after. Que the crying. The weird twist in all of this is that my role in the dream was that of the dead wife.

I'm pretty sure if I saw a preview of this as a made for tv movie that I'd roll my eyes and wonder who comes up with this stuff. If anyone decides to use this idea, I expect to see my name in the credits, a good character named after me, and 25% of the royalties.

Monday, December 06, 2010

JD's Words of Wisdom

JD is always full of great comments. He is a very entertaining kids, especially to only be 6. I have a couple of gems that are too big for a status line.
Nix, being the proper big sister she is, was giving a lecture about picking up and keeping track of your own toys. JD looks at her and says, "Nix, all I heard from that is, JD blah blah blah blah toys".  After we all laughed a good laugh I made sure he knew that if he pulled that with an adult then he was risking serious punishment. But, that is the really great thing about JD, he seems to know when it is okay to joke around like that and when not to. He is very respectful, except to Nix.
This morning I asked JD to plug in the lights on the Christmas tree. I guess at some point we went overboard on the "don't stick stuff in the outlets" speech because he looks at me very seriously and says, "I don't think I'm old enough to plug them in yet. I'm not ready for my life to end." I tried showing him the right way to pull things in, but the light plugs that allow you to plug into the back really threw him. He decided it was best to wait until he gets a little older.
I was a little worried (okay, I was really stressed) that JD would not take his school work seriously. Getting him to do homework and study spelling is impossible. Early on in the school year I told him that if he didn't get serious then he wouldn't make good grades and be able to go to the second grade. He looked at me like I had lost my mind and said, "Mom, I'm only crazy at home. I'm serious at school." And so he is. I checked with his teacher. She found it hard to believe that he is so goofy at home. She says she has to reminder herself that he isn't just a really small man because he is so serious. I still find that hard to believe.

Friday, December 03, 2010

Christmas Carol Gone Wrong

Late last night I heard a Christmas song that I had never heard before, and I knew I had to post it today. It is a song written about something that really happened in 1915 during World War I. As with all great songs about legendary historic events, the writer took a few liberties with the truth, but the core of the story does seem to be true. The British and the German troops were entrenched close to each other when Christmas came. The British heard the Germans singing a song they recognized as "Silent Night" in German. They responded by singing their own carol. After some back and forth, both sides emerged from their fox holes and had a small celebration together in the area deemed "no man's land", which also included playing a little football. The event didn't last long as commanders called their troops back to the reality of the situation.
Much like the officers of these men, the writers of this song decide to call us all back to the reality of war in the last verse. I had no idea there was a Christmas song about killing Germans mixed with words from "Silent Night". It was like that scene in every John Woo movie where there is a gun battle with "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" playing over the action. The song had started by warming my heart and then slammed me back to the cold harsh war.  Why don't you just tell me the Christmas Shoes woman died!
I hope you find you find this as oddly interesting as I did.

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The song is sung by the group Cletic Thunder who had a Christmas special on PBS last night.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Christmas Music

It is December 1st which means it is officially socially acceptable to listen to Christmas music again. Woohoo! A friend is posting a Christmas song a day on her blog and I thought I'd join in the fun. I kind of doubt I'll do one every day. It will all depend on what I can find.
Today's selection comes from the movie Toys. It is weird little movie and makes almost no sense, but Hans Zimmer did the music for it. At the end of the movie there is a song called "At the Closing of the Year" sung by Wendy and Lisa with a special Seal kicker. I know it is an odd choice, but I like it and wanted to start out with the unexpected . Enjoy!

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