Tuesday, December 21, 2010


9:30am Sunday: Babysitter calls to say her mother died unexpectedly and she'd (obviously) need the week off.

9:40am Sunday: Call brother and sister-in-law to tell them the news and secure some babysitting for Ellie. Monday is taken care of. We'll find someone for Tuesday and Wednesday.

10:30am Sunday: John calls his mom. She can watch E on Wednesday but we'll have to drive her down. No problem, except that we have one car and he'll have to leave around 6:45am to be back in time for work.

10:45am Sunday: I call my Aunt Pat, she has doctor's appointments and can't commit to helping on Tuesday.

11am: I call my mom. She offers to use a vacation day to help us out on Tuesday.

Proceed with the day. Attend a family party which means kids don't nap and are overtired.

11am Monday: Call from Luke's teacher that he has pink eye and I need a doctor's note before he can come back to school. Need to pick him up immediately.

11:04am Monday: Call pediatrician's office. Can't get an appointment until Tuesday at 8:30. Call sister-in-law to say Luke is coming over.

11:15am Monday: Rush to school to get Luke. Drive home and get Vigamox, since we are stockpiled with the elixer.

11:30am Monday: Bring Luke to sister-in-laws. Get drops in his eyes. Head back to work.

7:00am Tuesday: Ellie wakes up with a bloody nose.

8:30am Tuesday: My mom arrives and takes over to spend the day with Ellie. I thought for sure Luke was off to school. Luke to the doctor. They decide to swab him for strep. Turns out he has it along with pink eye in both eyes. He's out of school for the rest of the week. Doctor says to make an appointment for Ellie to be checked today as well.

9am Tuesday: Bring script to the pharmacy for Luke. Bring Luke home to Grandma.

10am Tuesday: I have a meeting at work off-site.

11am Tuesday: Go to pharmacy to get Luke's medicine.

11:15am Tuesday: Go home to get medicine into Luke. Ellie screams for medicine too.

1pm Tuesday: John comes to my office to get surplus Vigamox since his eyes are burning.

4:30pm Tuesday: Go home. Make dinner. Wake up Ellie and get her dressed for the doctors.

5:30pm Tuesday: Go to doctor's. Determine that Ellie does not have strep but has a sinus infection and pink eye.

6pm Tuesday: Go back to pharmacy and drop off her script.

6:15pm Tuesday: Home. Eat dinner. Do baths and get kids in pjs.

7pm Tuesday: Luke and I go to pharmacy for 4th time in one day.

7:20pm Tuesday: Begin bedtime. Read books. Sing songs. Brush teeth.

8pm Tuesday: Kids to bed. Do laundry and dishes.

8:20pm Tuesday: Luke insists on his light on and door open. John lays down with him and reads more stories.

9pm Tuesday: Luke spits in his face. John punishes him. Luke throws up. Yadda. Yadda. Yadda. Until 10pm when the house is finally quiet.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Christmas wishes

It's Christmas. The time of year where we run around buying things for others, sometimes with great thought and care and sometimes we buy in haste because we don't know what to get, or quite honestly just want to cross them off our list, or to have something, anything to give to them. It's the time of year where stores are crazy, drivers are impatient and the lines for everything are long. We stress ourselves out as we lose sight of what really matters.

My babysitter's mother died last night. It was sudden and unexpected. I remember her telling me a few weeks ago of how they shopped together over the previous weekend and her mom bought all of her four grandchildren lavish gifts which was somewhat out of character for her to do. I can only imagine what it will be like for them open those presents without her present to see their reactions. They will rather be left with a void. Their grandmother won't be there to hug and thank or to even reciprocate the surprise to.

My mom and I went to New York City a few weeks ago as a belated birthday trip. Hers not mine. It was lovely to be just the two of us without any distractions of kids or life in general. I asked her what it was like as a parent to leave my 22 year old smarter-than-you-can-imagine self in New Jersey to start a new phase of my life as a working girl in NYC? We laughed at my insane phone calls home, especially the time when I had locked myself out of my apartment and was on a pay phone near teenaged boys beating themselves up with baseball bats. Oh how smart I was; crying on a pay phone and wanting to be anywhere but where I was. Character building moments, right?

I am grateful for that day in NYC, even though it was crowded and crazy, it was fun.

We ate at a french restaurant with snooty service which I chalked up to part of the NYC experience. We wandered through crowded places like Anthropologie, the Union Square Holiday Market, Bryant Park and Grand Central. We went on The Ride and the whole bus sang Happy Birthday to her.
My mom always made Christmas a big deal. It was magical and special with strong traditions. Our holidays were built on family, surprises, and togetherness (with of course the right amount of crazy shopping days).

Remember the love you have, not the stuff you have. Live without regret.