Thursday, December 10, 2009

Parenting failures and grand plans

Today has started off well. We lost power at some point during the night, therefore our sleep wasn't interrupted by any pesky alarms this morning. It also means that the kids missed the bus, which wouldn't have been a big deal, except for my truck which is acting up, and not available to make school runs. The alternative to driving the kids to school, would have been walking the kids to school, which would have been a four mile walk for Hercules. Yeah, no thanks. So, the kids are home today.

Well, since the kids are home today, I am not going to lose any opportunities here. We are launching a massive cleaning campaign today. The house *will* be ready for the maid service to start on Monday. I will be working them hard today. I will be working hard today. We have much ground to cover in the next week before my sister arrives. Which brings me to great news, my sister and her husband will be stopping by to see us for a couple of days next week to celebrate the holidays. Before they arrive however, there is much work to be done around my humble abode. You see, given the small space, in conjunction with the many bodies, my house is usually bursting at the seams without any additional company. So, I try (hard) not to have to entertain often. For this reason, I am a bit panicked about the visit.

In order to invite maximum stress upon myself and set goals like the overachiever I used to be, before my sister and brother in law arrive, we are hanging new shelves in the upstairs bedroom. We are also painting. I intend to get the whole house painted, but, in a pinch, I'll settle for the downstairs and the wall we'll be hanging shelves on. That is doable in a week, right?

Then there is the subject of presents. What does one get for her sister and BIL who are making plans to spoil her children rotten? Suggestions anyone? Please? I am looking for something sentimental, rather than costly, but, I am fresh out of anything that might be considered an idea.


  1. you know, one year, my sister made me a snow globe. In it, there was a picture of her standing next to the "Welcome to Wisconsin" sign and the other side, was a picture of her husband standing next to the sign that said "The City of Neskoro, Population 563"

    I loved it. Now, I actually collect snow globes, so maybe your sister might not like it, but it was definitely sentimental for me. It's sitting on my mantle as we speak!

    as for my brother in law...I get him a bottle of crown royal every year...and he LOVES me for it. Not sure your family allows for the gift giving of fine liquor, but me and my brother and law are pals, and we don't care what anyone thinks.

    Oh, and if you are going to attempt to PAINT the entire ONE ROOM AT A TIME. Tell yourself, JUST THIS ROOM. then...IF you finish THAT room, move on to another....but keep your list simple...only get ambitious as time allows you to be! NO STRESSING YOURSELF OUT so much that you can't enjoy your sister's visit.

    I know this, because my sister, brother-in-law and niece and nephew are here as we speak, staying at MY house....and boy, i tell ya, my house is a freaking mad house! lol

    But i love it, and you will too!


  2. I know exactly what you mean. Our house is tiny, too. We might have my aunt and two adult cousins for the holiday, and that means air mattresses on the dining and living room floor. Crazy tight.

    Do you have a price point in mind for the gift? Some suggestions.

    Inexpensive: Have the kids make a huge, multi-medium art project where they all contribute whatever they want to the picture.

    Medium: See above, but take pictures of them making the project. Have Target make a collage of the kids working on the project together. Frame it and give both the collage and the project. HM did this for mother's day and I love it.

    More Expensive: They sell those digital picture frames fairly cheaply these days -- you could get one and fill it with pictures of the kids. Also, I found this How To (not that I could do it):