Saturday, December 17, 2016

Just Gotta Keep Chuga Chugaing Along!

Had a very long day.  It started with my husband's--he calls it determination, I call it stupidity--challenge of the Level 1 icy road conditions.  He was going to go into work this morning, and didn't see the signs as he spent 10 minutes chipping thick ice off of the car, which woke me up.  Then, he woke me up again, saying that he needed help getting the car out of a ditch.

I was not prepared for how icy it was this early morn. Treacherous.  I wasn't a fan of him this morning, but we got out of the ditch, after he clipped layers of ice off of the road for foot holds.  We tried driving to the entrance of our complex and couldn't make it.  So we tried backing up into the exit.  Nope, and we almost landed ourselves in another ditch.  We were trapped on a little stretch of road.  And several 4WD vehicle drove passed us.  Didn't bother to stop and ask if we needed help or anything.


Anyway, we sat there, in the middle of the road, stuck.  Then we saw a vehicle crazy enough to come down the hill.  We freaked, and moved out of the way, not caring that we were stuck in the ditch. Then red and blue lights came on and I was so happy.  It was a cop.  One of our neighbors called them, and I am so thankful.

The cop said that our road was so bad that the salt trucks couldn't drive down it, so the road was closed at both ends (river on one end, big hill on the other).  He set up flares and cones, and we went back home to warm up and sleep.  Hubby was able to get it out around noon.

No injuries, no damages--although hubs slipped and fell a lot and had to hulk the car out of the ditch the first time, leaving him very sore.  We focused on Wolfman's birthday--weather was NOT getting in the way!

Everything worked out.  We only had the grandparents and two friends and their minion, and it was fun.  You know you're a parent, when you're standing around talking about toddler shows.  lol.  It was great, though.  And I finally get a little bit about why some people like train sets.  It's relaxing, and fun to apply personalities to the trains, especially when you watch those shows and the toys' match their character's traits.

That and to see the joy on our children's faces was priceless.

 The party favor boxes.  I'm very glad that I stopped at the Dollar Tree first, because these were perfect.  I filled them with a plastic train and track, chocolate coal, two juice boxes, and two packs of graham crackers with vehicle shapes on them.

Instead of giving two to my kids (they already had a enough stuff from attending a Christmas party earlier), I gave them to my BIL, who stopped by later, for his kids.

The kids' favorite part of the party was the motorized train set on the table.  Wolfman certainly loved it.

Just gotta have a little bit of faith in people and the situation.

Thursday, December 15, 2016

Daily December Debate

Everyday, Wolfman and I get into a debate about what our holiday tree is called.  He says "Christmas".  I say "Yule" or "Yulemas".  A couple of days ago, I got him to say "Yulemas" and he actually agreed with me.  Then he went over to grandma's and came back saying, "Great grandma has a Christmas tree!  Grandma has a Christmas tree!  We have a Christmas tree!"

He's very stubborn about this....don't know where he gets that from.....  ;-)

Damn mainstream media, teaching only one holiday.  Although most mainstream that I watch, Christmas is secular and all about charity and Santa, which is how it mostly is with my mom.  Christmas, for her, is secular, about the family, and especially the children.  Joy, fun, warmth, and good food.

We're trying to teach them that some people have Christmas and Santa, but not everyone.  We have Yule and the Winter Solstice (on top of those, I also have the Poseidea).  Santa--one of many Spirits of Giving--doesn't come to our house, but Odin (Norse God) and the Julbock (Scandinavian Spirit of Charity) do.  But Santa does go to Grandma and Great Grandma's house because they do celebrate Christmas.

It's not one or the other.  We have Yule at home, then Christmas a couple of days later with grandma.

It'll click eventually, especially as we do more Yule, Winter Solstice, Odin, Sleipnir, and the Julbock arts&crafts and stories (and the other Spirits of Charity and winter holidays).  I've been sick all December and haven't had the energy to really do anything, other than decorate the house and debate with Wolfman about the tree.  On Yule Eve, I plan on reading them some stories about the Oak and Holly King, and the magik of our Spirits of Charity.

I know that some parents burst the bubble for their kids about Santa, but I like the idea of calling him a Spirit.  Some people--kids and adults--believe in him and some don't.  It's ain't right for others to go around and tease people about their beliefs, even about Santa, or hell, the Easter Bunny, ya know?  You wouldn't like it if someone teased you about believing in your Gods and Spirits (if you have them), so why's it okay to do that to someone else?

Although if my kids choose to not believe in Santa, Odin, or any other Spirits and Gods, that's their choice.  I, for one, ain't gonna burst their bubble because he's not part of our home traditions and paths.  I also will tell them that some people--kids and adults--believe and others don't (for various reasons).  Believe what you want to believe in, don't let others bully you into their beliefs.

Believe what you want....just know what our darn tree is called!  :-)

Monday, December 12, 2016

December Birthdays

Here's a soft spoken, yet in your face alarm clock. Every morning, I wake up to this: "Mommy, put Tow Mater on. Put Tow Mater on. Put Tow Mater on. Put Tow Mater on. Put Tow Mater on. Mommy, put Tow Mater on. Put Tow Mater on. Put Tow Mater on. I want Tow Mater, Mommy." Repeats until I do it. Sometimes he asks for others, like "Paw Datrol", Toy Story, Monsters School (MU), "Mr. Indecredables", The Frozen movie, Peppa, Bubble Guppies, and so on.... But yeah, same thing. Soft, but no less annoying.

Saturday is Wolfman's Thomas and Friends 4th birthday party.  We got him the Emily train to open.  My mom bought him a train set that I'm going to set up on the table and put the food and what not, in the open spaces, all around the cake.  The cake is going to be a cupcake cup from Walmart, that hubby's going to order later today (hate Walmart, but I love their cakes.  I only shop at Walmart twice a year for birthday cakes).  I'll totally be able to work the track into the cake design. The cake is cute. Wolfman's going to love it.

Food wise, we're going to have the cake, pizza, and either a tray of bananas, apples, and berries, or a veggie tray of green peppers, carrots,and ranch dip.  As well as apple juice for the kids.  Which I don't even know how many kids we're going to have this year.  No one's been replying to the invitations.  I don't believe that we're going to have a lot of people, so not doing as much as I'd usually do.

December birthdays are just depressing.  People usually have others things going on, or they wait until the very last minute to see if they anything else going on before telling you anything.  For me, I'm typically a first come, first serve type of person when it comes to invites.  That's how I was raised.  Sometimes I have a hard time when someone just waits for a better invite, like a friend of mine does.  It's annoying.

Course this friend also has a habit of getting my hopes up, then blowing me at the last minute.  I think I might be a little scarred, come to think of it...  Why are we still friends, again?

If you don't want to come, just be honest.  You're wasting my time and my money (now I ain't the type who charges people out of spite or pettiness).  I plan things early, invite in a timely manner to let family know, hey we're having his party on this day, please don't plan anything.  Usually some family members ignore that, then expect us to reschedule, despite that ours was planned first.  Like my step dad planned his family gathering on our day AGAIN.  Luckily, they had it early enough that we just moved it to 5 pm, instead of 2 pm.

Not to mention, it's December!  There's a lot of gift giving going on.  But I always add that you don't have to bring anything.  Just yourselves.  Wolfman will be happy just seeing you there.  We can't always afford gifts for others kids, so I don't expect people to give ours gifts.  My kids love seeing you, and that's enough.

It's December, there's a lot of holiday parties going on!  I don't mind so much with my friends, as I do with my family.  I expect certain family to be there.  And I get it, it's a 4-year-old's birthday party, no booze, no adult fun.  Just let me know, though.  I don't care about your reasons, just give me a timely response, so I can plan accordingly.

Courtesy, a dying art.

And it's December....knowing from experience, some people suffer from seasonal depression.  Which is one of the reasons why I'm stressing, because of my own depression rearing it's ugly head around this time.

December can also be a rather sad and/or stressful month for people.

Annoying.  I feel bad for my kid.  I thought doing it early would be better than New Year's Eve, which is when my friend is having her son's birthday.  I, for one, am looking forward to the Thomas and the Minions birthday parties this month.  At least one kid-the little Minion--for sure, is going to be there.  But I guess, I picked the worst time for a kid's birthday party.  Just before Christmas.  Idiot.

Honestly, if it's just three kids, then I'll have more money to spend on making those three pails awesome, right?

Also, Wolfman just called our tree is Yulemas tree.  Score.

Oh, good, a family member just gave me their answer.  :-)  One down, ten to go.

May my kid never know the disappointment of having a December birthday.  Let mommy handle all of that behind the scenes, while you have a fantastic party, with lots of awesome memories.

On his actually birthday, on the 28th, we're going to do something special.  Just mommy, daddy, Warrior, and the birthday boy.

Sunday, December 4, 2016


Whew, finally!  Tree is up!

Big thanks to my mom for getting us a replacement tree stand!  Tree is up and it's finally starting to look like Yulemas around here...minus all of the stockings hanging.

Wolfman saw them hanging and said, "Mommy, why are socks on the wall?"
"They're stockings for Yule, buddy."
Laughing, "Socks go on our feet, not the wall!"  So they're wall socks now.

Like, we seriously have a lot of stocking hanging.  Some are store bought and themed, like the Cars for Wolfman and a kitty for Warrior.  Detriot Red Wings for hubby, and a Naughty/Nice for mommy.  The others are crocheted from my husband's grandmother and sister.  Gotta hang those!  This time of the year has a major emphasis on family, tradition, and charity.  What's more fitting than handmade stockings?  Even Nathan has a stocking up, with the family.  Then hanging by the door is one for the Julbocken and Sleipnir, that I'll put some carrots or oats inside of, as offering.  Odin gets fire whiskey, but I wait until the kids go to bed before I leave that offering out (way out of their reach).

In looking at my tree, I've made almost all of the ornaments on it. I think that as the kids start to grow out of certain toys, I'm going to take their favorites and turn a couple into ornaments, complete with the year.

Now I have to think of what I'm going to make for this year.... Maybe a Boov? I have Deadpool, some Harry Potter stuff, Paw Patrol and Buzz, Minions... Perhaps Boov and Blaze?
I may have the kids make ornaments this year, too.

Also another big thanks to my mom, who helped buy presents for the kids.  They're mostly getting toys this year, but I'm fine with that, since it was my mom who offered.  I graciously accepted, we were actually fine with just getting them one toy each, but my mom had other plans and wasn't going to take no for an answer.  Usually we do four gifts, something they want, something they need, something to wear, and something to read.  So this year, they have 3 toys each from grandma that we're giving to them on Yule (they have Christmas at her house, and get a few more), then from us a character bathing set, pj's, and a movie.

Most of our money is going to (aside from bills) Wolfman's birthday, Thomas the Train!  We already have a present for him, one of Thomas' friends, Emily.  All we'll need is the theme and cake.  Mom's getting pizza.  I guess she got him a train set with tracks, so we're going to put the tracks around the cake, and that'll be his big birthday gift, making the toy a part of the cake, like I've done with the Look Out and the Barn in birthday's past.

Definitely doing another cupcake cake, because those are fantastic.

Next year, I'll be making large stuffed monster truck tires with handles (inspired by the Blaze costume Wolfman wore for Halloween), and giving that as their toy gift.  I'd like to start emphasizing hand made gifts for Yule as they get older.  One of my friends does that with her children for Christmas and her kids are really appreciative of their gifts, and make gifts for each other.  It's pretty cool.

On the potty training front, Warrior is doing fantastic.  More and more he's asking us to remove his diaper so he can use the potty.  We only put it on him at night and for naps.  Then tonight, after night night, he called for daddy so he could use the potty!  He's more ready for night training than we are.  He still hasn't pooped in the potty yet, so we're waiting for more advanced stages until he does.

Lots of good things are happening right now.  Especially a huge blessing, in that my husband's garnishment will be paid off at the end of this year!  Hopefully we won't be scrimping by next year.  We'll actually be able to get back on track with our homestead plans, and not need financial help from family.

We're really blessed and thankful for all of the support and love from our family and friends.  It's been a tough year, emotionally and financially, but a lot of good things have also come from it, too.  So much growth and strength and love.

Blessings friends, hope your month is good.

Thursday, December 1, 2016

Knock On Wood

Warrior's been potty training for a couple of weeks, and although it's been inconsistent with the holidays, travel, and diarrhea, he's been doing really well so far.  Better than his brother did.  But still early.

As Wolfman, we've decided to have his birthday on the 17th and make it Thomas the Train themed, as I originally planned.  He's going to love it either way, as long as it's something he loves.  The boys have really been into trains lately.

Today's the Noumenia--Hellenic Polytheism festival day that honors the Household Gods--so I've been trying to find the motivation to organize and move my yarn tower, so I can put up the Yule luck so far.  Perhaps after the gym tonight?

Ugh, the boys have gotten into a nasty habit of ripping up their books.  Even after watching me throw them away, it's like a goal for them now.  Warrior just brought me a book asking me to read it, and I told him no because it's broken.  I can't read a broken book and daddy can't fix it.  Hopefully that will sink in with him.  Wolfman uses the books as train tracks for his trains....hopefully he'll see that he can't build his tracks if he keeps ripping up his books.  Fingers crossed.  Although I may just collect them all up as punishment.