Typing One Handed

Parenting is a game where only the kids know the rules.

May I Offer You Some Plastic Peas? December 29, 2009

Filed under: Cooking,holidays,kids — Kelly Jo @ 2:00 pm
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Now that my oldest is two, and old enough to be aware of who Santa is and what he does, I realized this year that Christmas really is for the kids.  In years past I have always put together my list and waited anxiously to see what Santa (Mom and Dad) would bring me.  Except the year I looked in Mom and Dad’s closet and knew everything I was getting.  Best. Christmas. Ever.

This year was different though.  As my husband and I were putting together the kitchen that Grandpa and Grandma Santa had gotten Zoey, I realized that I was more excited to see Zoey’s reaction to her new kitchen than I was to see my own gifts.  Does this mean parenthood has made me less selfish? That can’t be right.  Anyway…

The kitchen was the biggest hit of Christmas.  Bigger than Uncle Tyler’s smoker, Uncle Brett’s iPod, or Mommy’s new Keurig (which, obviously, was a close second).  It was such a big hit, in fact, that she didn’t want to continue opening presents, she was too busy playing with her new kitchen.  She finally finished opening her presents around three that afternoon.  And I opened most of them for her.

It’s really cool when your two-year old has her own kitchen.  And I’m not at all jealous that her kitchen is nicer than mine.  Really.  In her kitchen with (plastic) stainless steel appliances, Zoey has cooked for us many fine dishes, such as (plastic) roast chicken, (plastic) corn on the cob, (plastic) pink carrots, and (rubber) fried eggs.  She has also tempted our taste buds with some imaginary culinary treats, such as microwave popcorn from an empty cardboard box, coconut milk from a can that can’t be opened, and apple juice from a sealed carton which Zoey insists you drink from a teacup with a spoon.

Occasionally she lets us cook with her.  “Mommy, do want to cook?”  “Daddy, do want to cook?”  (This isn’t a typo, she doesn’t say the word “you”.)  But mostly she is busy working by herself.  She spends so much time in her kitchen that I am tempted to give her real ingredients and see what she comes up with.  If I hated myself even a little and hadn’t had the carpets shampooed just last month, I might actually do it.

In the meantime I am enjoying watching her face light up as she serves me her latest concoction.  Little smokies with oregano and cinnamon?  Yes, please!

I am also considering re-wrapping the unnoticed presents.  Maybe her birthday won’t cost too much next year.

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If I Could… December 4, 2009

Filed under: holidays,Writer's Workshop — Kelly Jo @ 10:48 am
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One thing I have enjoyed since switching over to my shiny, new, grown up blog is the ease of checking out other blogs.  I have spent many hours holding Baby Maya in my left arm while alternating my right hand back and forth between the mouse and keyboard, checking out all kinds of new blogs.  One blog I came across about five minutes ago is called Mama’s Losin’ It.

My first thought when looking at the title is- Hey, I can relate!!!  But in reading her blog I not only found myself  laughing and enjoying her posts, but I also came up with today’s inspiration.

Every Wednesday she hosts a writer’s workshop where she posts topics for bloggers to choose from, and encourages you to choose one topic and blog about it.  So for today’s blog I present to you my Writer’s Workshop Post:

Describe how you would celebrate the holidays if it was totally up to you and money was not a factor.

This is a good topic for me to write about right now.  And I would like to start by saying that I LOVE PRESENTS.  In fact, I love them so much that if you want to give me a present I can promise you that I will happily accept it, as long as it is something that you have carefully chosen from my detailed Christmas list.

That said, I am one of those dorks that truly believes it is better to give than receive.  There is nothing I love more at Christmastime than having so many presents stuffed under my tree for all of my loved ones that they are spilling out all over into the living room.  I love to see the look on someone’s face when they unwrap a present that they truly love.  I love to see the joy on my daughter’s face as she and daddy play with her new toy and have so much fun together.

I have been so lucky the past few Christmases that this has been a reality.  However, circumstances are different this Christmas.  I had Maya in October, and she came right on time.  She did try to come early however, so early that I was placed on bed rest about a month and a half before my due date.  As my maternity leave is unpaid, this really made things tight. My husband and I crunched numbers and decided we have enough in savings to make it work, so I could still take my full maternity leave.  Then the bomb dropped.

My husband lost his job one month after Maya was born.  Although he has some good prospects and is collecting unemployment, in this economy it is hard to know just when he will be working again.  Let alone what kind of position he will be able to get with so much fierce competition out there.  So, of course, the most rational way to be cautious about our expenses is scale back on Christmas.

Suffice it to say, this topic is easily answered.  If it were totally up to me (and money was not a factor), I would have to buy a bigger house to fit all of the presents I would be giving people.

I would start by purchasing every item on my sister’s baby registry, so that my niece will have everything she could need and want when she arrives in January.

I would buy my mom a new stove, and probably the other kitchen appliances to match.  Then I would make sure my dad had top of the line cookware so he could prepare an amazing prime rib in his new kitchen (this Christmas dinner could be his gift to me).

I would have every pointless plastic object that Zoey doesn’t need, but oh-so-badly wants.  Plastic computers, plastic musical instruments, and maybe even a plastic pony to “ride” around the house.

Maya would have a brand new Gap Baby and Gymboree  wardrobe, instead of her sister’s hand-me-downs.

And most importantly, I would have the perfect gift for my husband.  I don’t know what that gift would be.  Even with all of the money in the world, he wouldn’t ask for much.  So I would have a gift for him that lets him know how happy he makes me, what a wonderful father he is, and how honored I am to be his wife.

I would finish the day by watching It’s a Wonderful Life by the fire, with my husband and my two beautiful girls by my side.  The best part of Christmas is enjoying the day with the people you love the most. And that is something we will do.  Because for the most important things, money is never a factor.

 

Who Likes Free Stuff? December 2, 2009

Filed under: Holiday Shopping — Kelly Jo @ 6:21 pm
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I love the holidays!!! I love the colors, the smell of trees, and even the business of the stores.  I especially love being finished with shopping, wrapping, and decorating by bedtime on Black Friday!  Why do I have all of this done so soon?  Because I’m crazy, of course!  And also because when I purchase presents throughout the year it frees up more money during the season to shop for extras- you know, all of the great “stuff” that comes out around this time.  Things that you just can’t live without.  This year I stumbled onto a great one: www.personalizedfree.com.

This website is an ornament lover’s heaven!  It has multiple ornaments for just about every occasion,  occupation, and hobby.  And the best part?  They personalize it for free!  (I bet you couldn’t have guessed that from the name!) The ornaments look beautiful, and the service is FAST.  I placed an order on Wednesday night and received them on Monday morning.  Not bad, considering we had Thanksgiving and a weekend in that time frame!  I have already ordered three for this year, but I’m pretty sure they will be hearing from me again.

So where does free stuff come into play?  Well, my good friend Kisha over at In Through the Out Door is having a giveaway.  The winner receives a free ornament!  The contest ends tomorrow night at 10 PM, so hurry on over to Kisha’s Freebie Friday post to find out how to not only enter the contest, but get a 10% discount on any purchases as well!  Good luck!

(I am receiving no compensation for the preceding post.  I am simply endorsing a product I love!)