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January 2008

It's time!


It's time!  It is officially Christmas Eve, which means tomorrow is Christmas Day (duh) and the culmination of all the shopping/baking/decorating/entertaining madness.  Well, mostly.  There's still New Year's Eve, although at House Grouchy Mom that usually means a good round of Trivial Pursuit or some such and an overabundance of munchies.  But tomorrow - tomorrow - TOMORROW is the Big Day! 
    You know, my kids aren't exactly little now, and Santa Claus has gone the way of the dodo, but there's still something about seeing their faces on Christmas morning that tickles my heart.  The look of glee when they unwrap that perfect present...the sweetness of their gifts for each other ("I knew you wanted that!")'s still so special.  I know that Thanksgiving is the "official" holiday of thankfulness, but I have to tell you, Christmas is when I really get serious about acknowledging the joys in my life.  Our lives are so blessed.  So I want to pass on the joy to you.
    This Christmas, may your blessings number more than the calories on your cookie trays; may friends and family be closer than that too-small sweater from your great aunt; and may your hearts be softer than undercooked fudge.  God bless us, every one!!

I wonder, as I wander through a wintery wonderland... it is that the kids can play in the snow for an hour and not want to come in, but if you send them outside to do chores they're FREEZING TO DEATH!!  Is it just me, or is that kind of inconsistent?   But I digress (what a surprise!).
    We got us a whole heapin' pile 'o' snow this weekend!  About 8 inches of the white stuff came down Saturday and Sunday, and there are some pretty healthy flurries blowing around out there right now.  It's beautiful and serene, and I am forced to confess that I would enjoy it much more if I didn't have to go out and take the dog to do her thing just as I'm settling in with a nice cup of coffee and some knitting.   But it's still beautiful.  Just much colder when it's going down my boots and up the legs of my pants. 
Snowy_tree See?  This is the west side of the pond, and as you can see, everything's covered.  It's like being inside a snowglobe, only without the tinkly music.  Or plastic reindeer.   However, we have real deer aplenty.  I was amazed at the number of deer trails I saw this morning.  They've even walked across the pond, which is kind of funny, because you can see where they've slid on the ice and had to scramble to keep their balance.  There are also cat tracks, raccoon prints, bunny trails, and (of course) evidence that the neighbor's overly-friendly dogs have been here.  We can do wildlife studies from our living room.  Pretty cool.  I think I like it here!

Oops, I did it again....

    There's just something about Christmastime that does serious damage to my self-control.  Kids want to get a video?  Sure!  Husband thinking about a new computer?  Go ahead, honey!  Can we have another dog?  No prob- wait, did you say "another dog"? 
    Yeah.  Another dog.  And true to form, hubby and I both caved.  Buckled like a house of cards.  Zero resistance.  We now have, as part of our family, a black lab/greyhound cross named Shyla.
The rescue center thinks she's about 4 years old.  She was found running the streets of Flint, and taken to Adopt-A-Pet in Fenton.  After trying unsuccessfully to find her owner, she was placed in a foster home and advertised as being available for adoption.  The kids and I stopped in yesterday and fell in love.
Shyla is completely housetrained already and up to date on all her shots, as well as being spayed.  She lets me know when she needs to go out, and otherwise she follows us from room to room and makes herself comfortable while we do whatever it is we're doing. 
    Now, we most emphatically did NOT need another animal!  We already had a dog, two cats, two parakeets and a beta.  What in the world would make us think that adding another critter was a good idea?  But you know, I look at her and have absolutely no regrets.  She's a sweetheart, and we're giving her a loving home.   I think I have my Christmas present.

Not a good thing


This was a fairly normal weekend at House Grouchy Mom.  Husband came home from Mexico (yay!), kids played games, etc.  There was just one dark cloud in our weekend sky - a discovery I made that is so horrendous, I'm still reeling from the shock and trauma.

    Chin whiskers.

    I have little old lady chin whiskers.  You know, those odd little hairs that you see sprouting from Great-Aunt Martha's chin when she swoops in for that awful Christmas kiss?  The funny fuzz that your third-grade teacher had, the fuzz that left you with nightmares for weeks and an unexplainable aversion to peaches?  Yeah.  Those.  I am beyond distraught.  Completely apart from the aesthetic aspects, these little hairs mean that I'm forced to face a fact I have thus far avoided.  I'm getting old.

    Yes, you heard me - OLD.  The only other alternative is that I'm becoming a man, and there ain't no way on God's green earth we're getting on that train, so old it is.  I really thought I had a few good years yet before I had to worry about such things.  After all, I'm only 42.  That's not that old, is it?  I'm nowhere close to retirement age - heck, I can't even join the AARP yet!    Chin whiskers are for OLD people, right?  Well, apparently my chin is aging in dog years compared to the rest of me, because chin whiskers I have.
    Or more accurately, chin whiskers I had.  Once the pesky little traitors were discovered, they were swiftly and summarily dealt with.  I don't care to discuss methods, but let me assure you that my chin is now as smooth as it was the day I was born.  The trauma, however, lingers on.  The whiskers snuck up on me, but can liver spots and support stockings be far behind?  How long do I have before I am officially OLD?  Wisdom and good judgement and life experience are fine things, but I'm not sure I'm ready to give up my giddy youthfulness just yet.  And I don't like prunes! 

    What's a youngster to do when she isn't a youngster any more? 

Random Seth-ness

    I am embarrassed to admit that my life is totally boring at the moment. Totally.  Nothing to see here, folks -  I mean really.  So to entertain the masses (humor me here), I offer you some of my youngest son's latest comments on life.
    First of all, I know it's hard to believe, but my angel-children aren't always so angelic.  The drive to Grandma's house is always fertile ground for a spat, and our last trip was no exception.  Seth had been picking on his older brother relentlessly, and Luke finally let him know that he'd had enough - at which point Seth began yelling "I repent, I repent!"  I asked him if he knew what "repent" means, and he said "Sorry?" 
    "Well, yes, but repenting also means that you're turning away from the wrong thing you're doing; you aren't going to do it any more."
    Seth thought for a moment, then looked at Luke and said "Well, I'm sorry."   So much for turning away!
    A couple days later Mom and Melinda were teasing Seth, and it was starting to get to him a little bit.  Mom told him, "We're just teasing you because you're so cute!  Don't you love us?"
    Seth paused, then looked at Mom and said completely seriously "Define 'love', Grandma."   
    Mom cracked up....and quit teasing him.  Boy knows how to make a point.  I think he may have a future in politics.