Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Christmas Chaos Behind Us

Well, once again, Christmas has come and gone in the blink of an eye. So much build up it is almost impossible not to feel disappointed when this magical day melts away. Not so much magic for me this year, mostly work, although I did enjoy myself for the most part.

Christmas morning felt more rushed and harried than it has in a long time. I don't know what happened but I think I was too tired and lost my bossy mojo, and the people ripped open their gifts in about 20 minutes and then it was done. I couldn't get it together to make breakfast as I usually do, but just went back to bed around noon. The rest of the day felt disorganized and weird, cumulating with a welcomed trip to the movies this evening, and then off to work the overnight shift. Kind of scattered and chaotic, which is not how we normally roll.

I think it is the adjustment to having our holidays in our new house, the routine is off. It was all fine, but somehow I didn't have the same contented feeling I usually have after Christmas. This year I just secretly wanted it to be over. Maybe I'm just getting older and this is what my parents experienced. Bummer.

I did get a stunning new computer, and some beautiful coffee mugs, which I am very grateful for. My children were happy, albeit exhausted and a little crazy. I am just thinking that maybe next year we should opt for the Caribbean instead.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Alone and Dark

Working nights never fails to convolute the already chaotic sleep schedule of a parent with young children. Actually, it's pretty bad for anyone at all who requires sleep to survive, working nights is just not good for us. I find myself getting mixed up in these crazy patterns, waking up at noon today, sitting bolt upright in bed, convinced I was late for my 7pm shift. Really fucks with you.

Today I forced myself to stay in bed, go back to sleep, however fruitless, and not emerge until the sun had set (sadly at 4pm). When I got up my house was unusually quiet. I guess Francisco had taken the kids out for some fun. This would normally be a blissful surprise for a gal who spends many days desperate for a few minutes' reprieve from the little people glued to my side.

Today though, I am kind of sad about it. I generally get about an hour's worth of time with my kids on Saturday between shifts, something that is not enough as it is. It is usually an hour spent breaking up fights, heading off whining at the pass, throwing food onto plates for the hungry mouths while simultaneously loading the dishwasher, feeding the dog, showering, and cuddling those who miss me. It's chaotic but it's what I get, and it's what I choose so that I can sleep the day away and not feel like a zombie back at work in the middle of the night. But today I miss them. The dark, empty house just isn't quite as welcoming without my posse. I'm sure I'll regret saying all of this tomorrow when I'm dreaming of an empty house, coffee-drinking, blog-writing paradise.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Sticker Shock

Yesterday I met up with a couple of my oldest friends for a trip to bargain hunters' paradise: Ikea. No matter how hard I try, I just cannot say no to a visit to the store with the unpronouncible names and the delicious Sweedish meatballs. I can (and do) spend hours mulling over the kvorts and blatskiis, tossing the cheap napkins and candles into my cart willy-nilly like a kid in a candy shop. Cheap shopping Disneyland at its best.
See full size image
I was alarmed to find that when I reached the checkout and heaved all of my spoovrits and flaaskims onto the conveyer belt that my tab reached an unthinkable $167! I didn't have that much crap, how could that be?? With the pressure of loading all of the tiny goodies into the cart (Ikea has given up bags, great for the environment but I wish I'd gotten the memo), I did not have time to think about what I was buying that could be costing so much.

It wasn't until the next morning that I thought to check my receipt and figure out what the hell I'd just purchased (for myself no less, not much Christmas shopping happening at Ikea). It turns out that one of my impulse buys was a memory foam pillow (the Gosa Lilja) cost an outrageous $59.99. I become the queen of cheap when I shop at this store. Anything over $9.99 does not make it into my cart. Imagine my horror at finding out that I had made such a rookie bargain-shopper error. I thought that I had grabbed its cheap counterpart, but alas no, and back to Ikea I headed to sheepishly return such a ridiculous and unnecessary buy. 
GOSA LILJA Pillow, side sleeper IKEA Cut-out for your shoulder follows the contours of your neck and is designed for those who sleep on their side.

Lesson learned: make sure the Sweedish names match up to the tiny price label before throwing things in your oversized cart. Or maybe the lesson is to pay attention at the register instead of fantasizing about the meatballs that lie ahead in your future, and all the fun you might have with your lifetime supply of paper napkins.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

New Arrival

I don't think I'll ever get tired of having a baby in the house. This weekend we added a new addition to our family: our new kitty Pitten. Sofie has been asking for a kitten for months, and dutifully feeding our older cat for the past month to prove her readiness for her own four legged friend.

Our acquisition of Pitten was downright serendipitous. My cousin works at a vet office in New Jersey and just happened to get in this adorable creature the night before her mother was coming up to visit us. She quickly had her vaccinated, dewormed, and flea treated in time to ship her up north and make a little girl's dreams come true.

Sofie was over the moon. Although she will not pick Pitten up or get to close to her paws, she dutifully lies on her belly and studies her every move, feeds and waters her every day, and is proud to announce to the world that this is HER cat.

The rest of us feel pretty much the same way. It's funny how baby animals seem to bring out the best in people. Francisco has been shutting her out of our bedroom at night, groping desperately under the bed to try and pull her out so that she won't keep us up with her scratching and mewling. He can't resist smothering her with kisses as he delivers her back down to the living room. Nathan, a relatively indifferent kid when it comes to pets, can't get enough of the kitty playtime either. Nothing like a tiny little ball of fur to keep a family entertained for hours.