Posted in Christmas Crazy, Random Ramblings

These are a few of my favorite things…

I opened up my laptop with intentions to simply sit down and focus on getting caught up at work (is that even a plausible thought these days?). Anyway, instead I opened up a blank email and started this blog post. So here I sit, really doing several of my favorite things…

  1. The Christmas Tree light are on…(YES!! My Christmas Tree is UP and decorated. I typically wait until October 31 or November 1, but this year I just couldn’t wait.)
  2. Watching a Hallmark Christmas Movie! YAY! I’ve been waiting for these to start, like all year long!
  3. While being the only one awake in my house of 5! I LOVE solitary me time, where I can do whatever I want! I mean I love family time, but I do treasure time by myself…pretty certain that trait will never leave me.
  4. Eating. I really have to stop letting this be my favorite thing to do… I’ve been gaining weight since our vaca in August…I feel Terrible.
  5. Blogging! I still haven’t achieved a monthly post, much less weekly like I set out to do this year…but when I get the need to write (which is what happened as I sat down tonight), I do act!
  6. Being Productive. Well…I may not be doing my actual work, however I am checking something off my natural “to do” list.

You know there is just something about doing your favorite things when life feels…like Life. Lately life has felt and has actually been a bit messy for me. I think this is why I put my tree up just a tad bit early. Truth be known, I would have put it up a week ago when my husband pulled out the “tree box” when we were cleaning out the garage over fall break. However, he was not in favor and I did hold off…1 week. Having up my Christmas stuff and being able to watch Christmas movies brings a certain calm in my world. Maybe because it brings me back to my childhood days and loving the wonder and excitement of Christmas, or it’s the change of atmosphere it brings to my home for a short 2-month season. Whatever it is, it’s comfort. It’s calming. And it’s come just in time.

Posted in Christmas Crazy

…and to all a good night

The stockings were hidden with the gifts from Santa behind the couch,                            in hopes that the littles would not escape their room, see the loot, and make mom a grouch.

Poor rhyming….I know I know, but it’s after 11pm (which is late for this granny) & Christmas hustle & bustle with 3 kids, ages 4 and under, who by-the-way are all strong-willed, hyper, excited, not a calm bone in their body, type kids is Not for the faint of heart.  And as our 2nd (maybe 3rd…honestly, I can’t remember) year playing Santa…this parenting at the holiday thing is tiresome! Not to mention the mommy guilt that comes along, free of charge.

First, you may be wondering why I wouldn’t know exactly how long we’ve been playing Santa. “It should be easy, how old is your firstborn…” Except, I learned this great trick from a very wise woman, that when they are that young they have no clue who the gifts are from, so let the grandparents spoil them, they are going to anyway. So, over the last two years is when we started buying major gifts for them.  (Don’t be judging…you’re just jealous you didn’t save up those first few years too…j/k).

Anyway, now that it’s getting real because our 4 year old understands, it’s so fun! But with that fun, I’m slowly learning, comes a whole pile of WORK! No one told me about trying to hide gifts in your closet for 2 months. Or baking special cookies for Santa. (My Santa was perfectly fine with oreos…j/k, I do think my mother had special cookies for ours…) Or putting together toys, trying to be quiet and avoid the stirring of one to walk down the hall to go potty and find their Santa gifts being put together by the elves known as “mom and dad.” Shew! Makes me tired just writing that!

And tonight, about 5 minutes after all 3 were put to bed and threatened….I mean highly encouraged…not to stick their head outside the doorframe of their rooms until mom and dad are awake, I sat to take a small break before toy building ensued and it suddenly dawned on me…we didn’t let them put out the cookies they cut, baked, and decorated!! And the milk! Ahhhhh (insert Kevin McCallister’s well-known scream when he realizes he’s “Home Alone.”) ” What kind of parents are we? How could we forget part of the typical Santa tradition? How do people with those elves keep up …Everday? (I forgot 1 task, on 1 day). Do we go get them up and all roused back up, just to set out cookies?” (I believe when I asked this question, my husband secretly thought, ‘She’s lost her mind’). So, we let them be. We poured some milk in a glass, and the Cookie Monster of my home, ate a bite from each cookie, and we continued on with toy construction.

And while you might be thinking, oh that’s not bad, just some toy instructions, there’s also stickers for the toys, and batteries, and screws, and boxes. Those darn cardboard boxes that are cumbersome and bulky but still have to be hidden because our Santa doesn’t leave his trash, he picks up after himself…

With all said and done, I’m totally excited to video them running down the hallway, for us to experience the joy of the season, through their tiny souls. So while I have now ranted about the difficulty of keeping up with “playing Santa”…I’m actually grateful. Grateful for all my parents did. Grateful for grace, and to give myself that same grace because, cookies are minor details. Grateful, for a husband that doesn’t add to the mommy guilt and yet checks me back into reality over cookies and hustle & bustle, and reminds me…”it’s okay” or to just go drink a Coke 😉


Posted in Christmas Crazy

Another one in the books

Each year, for as long as I can remember, my mom had an annual “open house” Christmas Party. Meaning anytime between the chosen block of 4 hours, people could drop in, make a plate, have a few conversations with familiar faces, and then be on their way. No games. No requirement to stay the full time. No tacky sweater requirement, although that used to be my mom’s specialty outfit (sorry mom). And No obligation to come. Well, except that if you continually show no interest to come year-after-year, you will most likely not be included in following years invites…just sayin’

Over the years the party has changed for me. When I was a kid, I have no idea how my mother managed getting all the food ready and dealing with my brother and I, except that she’s a saint & made motherhood look like a walk in the park. You see,  I have vivid images of us hounding her about “how long till’ the party starts”, “when are people going to get here”, “can I eat yet”, “are my friends coming” and so-on and so-forth. [And this is why the Busby’s annual Christmas party lasted two years].

Then it evolved to my teen years where I played it cool. Sometimes, on a rare occasion, okay I think only once, I had a boyfriend who would come (and it ended up being the night I dumped him…I should blog about that!) Then I was involved in our church youth group, so sitting around cutting up about any of the dumb stuff we did became pretty popular material for our youth leader to use to make jokes to pass the evening.

Then it was young adult, “no I’m not married, yes I’m still single, no I don’t have a date for this party, and yes my job does satisfy my lifestyle right now” years… But thankfully I had “the girls” (you know who you are) by my side, otherwise I might have ended up admitting myself to a hospital for depression from the social network of parties and the questions that come in order to “catch up.” (This was also before the days of social media popularity-thank you Lord-or there would be no need for the game of 21 questions as everyone would already know my life circumstances, and would have expressed their opinion by the choice of “liking” my post or by making a comment, I’m sure)

Now I’m married with THREE kids (don’t worry, some days I don’t believe it) and so instead of frequent socializing, it’s more of corralling the kids to stay in the play room, “reminding” them in a stern but friendly tone to say “excuse me,” and keeping the youngest away from the crowd, because so far, he’s not a fan of humans (I’ll explain this shortly, but it’s a new phrase from my 4 year old). BUT, I do want to note, that my husband is fantastic in this arena, as he lets me socialize while he tends to the kids. I know ladies, I’m blessed! But listen, I was careful in the “husband selection” process, as I knew I already acted like “the man” in most cases, so the kids were definitely going to need someone

Anyway…the party always leaves me with a sweet sense of the holiday season from being close to friends and family, sharing stories of days gone by and days to come, with our bellies full of punch and goodies, and at the end, a house full of…

LAUGHTER. From sarcasm from the guys, crazy nonsense from “the girls” and whatever my children have done or said.

You thought I was going to get all sappy there, didn’t ya. And it does bring a good sense of the holiday, but with our crew, sometimes it’s just cray cray!  And tonight didn’t disappoint.

From my oldest starting to call adults “humans” which he was then asking my mom, “are these all the humans that are coming?” I tried to explain. Now he’s just doing it out of spite for the correct terminology (or it could be the fact that we keep laughing at him each time he does it).

To the baby throwing fits when people simply wanted to say “hi” and he wasn’t digging them being in his space, so all out screams would begin…

Or the disappointment that settled in when the oldest two came expecting one of my mom’s famous family dinners, only to realize the “party food” was “the dinner” and we would not all be sitting down together to break bread.

Which then led to daddy fixing peanut butter sandwiches. (I wish I had invented peanut butter-what a billionaire, & genius!)

Or when my “brother from another mother” (not really, but I just claim him as my brother) told me I look “mature” tonight as my outfit wasn’t as young and hip and stylish as I perceived, since others had it on too. I still liked it and plan to wear it again.

Or my oldest running up to my mom’s hair dresser and loudly proclaiming “hey, you cut hair but I don’t come to you because it costs money.”  To answer the questions in your mind right this moment: Yes, he heard one of his parents say that. No, it wasn’t his father. And we do still cut the child’s hair, but with three kids and this momma needing to keep her grays in check, you gotta cut costs somehow, so my husband has mastered buzz cuts and we are all just fine with it. Now, if only I could do the same for my daughter…Kidding, Kidding.

All-in-All a good night, leaving me happy with how the party has changed. I appreciate the value of this life so much more through the relationships of family and friends, and especially at the holidays.

That, and then you have the kids who sure do make it interesting.

*Disclaimer-the photo was actually taken at my mom’s! I love her home, but especially at Christmas!