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So this one time?

At Band Camp?  At Boston Pizza?

Yesterday?

My kids were awesome.

And it was so funny! Like, flute-free, G-rated, Alyson Hannigan (rocks), band camp funny.

Because recently?

Family dinners out?

Have degenerated.

Like last week’s Boston Pizza outing…

… into my kids channeling Donnie Walhberg.

Not in his boppy boy band “Right Stuff” stage of life.  But in the Sixth Sense “you’ll see dead people” stage.   If you never saw the movie, here’s the visual:

Sixth Sense

Replace this with my desolate, inconsolable “DON’T TOUCH ME! I DON’T WANT YOU!! YOU ARE A BAD MOMMY!!!” four-year-old.  With an 18-month-old wailing back-up in solidarity (sister!).  Not (quite) at the restaurant.  But very shortly after.  As we promptly tried to get them to bed.

And for those who didn’t see the movie?  Without giving too much away, it was pretty much downhill from here for poor Bruce…

There are days I relate.

Like last week, after our eldest was obviously over-Christmassed, over-tired, and DIDN’T want to go to lunch.  Dammit.  [Cue public implosion].

Sorry?  Wrong Graphic?

Sorry? Wrong Graphic? My bad. [Packing away the balloons…]

In fairness, she’s also getting over an “almost ended up in hospital” bout of strep throat.  But this was family bonding time!  Didn’t she “get it”?  Sparkle Sweetie! Suck it up!

Apparently tough love and my four-year-old do not happy make.

That said, after a few days rest – and about a bazillion views of Disney’s Tarzan – we have our nice, non-desolate daughter back.  And peace rules in the kingdom again!

Overall?

It’s been a nice Christmas holiday.  Really.  A bit too much up front – leading to above mention Boston Pizza breakdown.  But, really?  There are moments in my life where I. WOULD. SO. DO. THAT. TOO.  If I could get away with it.

I get it.

With that said – I’m linking this post up with Lizzi over at her Ten Things of Thankful Hop where she, and her co-hosts, endeavour to nurture an attitude of gratitude.

Ten Things of Thankful

So I’ve covered Number 10 (yesterday at Boston Pizza).

Number 9

I’m thankful that we got to spend time with my husband’s family on Christmas Eve.  They hosted.  One of my brother-in-law’s is a fabulous cook and gave us the most wonderful spread of game meat, and ribs, and salmon, that you ever did see. My other brother-in-law did much of the fabulous hunting that made that happen.  My sister-in-law and the elder cousins scoffed at the Pintimidators and made an awesome fruit tree.  Then there were snowmobile rides from my brother-in-law’s garage in the middle of nowhere – where he also houses his guns and butchers and hangs his own meat (Really, it’s a location that almost inspires me to fanzine an extra season of Dexter).  In unrelated news, dinner conversation that night included a discussion as to why his teenage daughter doesn’t eat red meat.

Number 8

I was thankful for the time spent with my family on Christmas Day and Boxing Day.  My parents hosted Christmas and my Aunt had us over, with some extended family, on Boxing Day.  It was great to see and spend time with family.  It was great to NOT host.  After the trip out to see my husband’s family, the kids were a bit tired (by this I mean my eldest was starting to look a bit like poor Donnie, above), but they still enjoyed the gifts and watching The Little Mermaid on the BIG SCREEN in my dad’s entertainment room in their basement.  Myself?  I enjoyed the very nice Christmas Armagnac my dad got for my mom.  Divine.

Number 7

I was thankful for the time I got to spend at the gym during my two weeks of holidays.  I made it to boot camp four times and, while it hurt, I can now plank and push up again in proper position.  Huzzah!  I am also forever thankful for the wonderful play-care at the gym that watches the girls while I workout and how family friendly my gym is generally.

Spotting for my workout (and in no way just running about before we leave...)

Spotting for my workout (and in no way just running about before we leave…)

Number 6

I was thankful for the time I got to spend having fun online.  I had time to create a swanky new About Me page (I swear, I’ll stop pimping this soon), and did a few other updates to the blog.  I also signed up for WordPress’ 30 Day Zero to Hero Blogger Challenge.  We’ll see if I have the staying power.  But so far, I’m pretty jazzed that I figured out how to make and “About Me” widget through the challenge.  If I accomplish nothing else, I’ll still be (sort of) satisfied that I did that.

Number 5

I’m thankful that I spent New Year’s in this year with just my family.  It’s the first year we’ve ever done that.  I love spending New Year’s with friends.  But honestly?  I didn’t have it in me to host (like we did last year) and our eldest obviously wasn’t at her best (see the “I see dead people” reference above), so we stayed in.  We made a nice dinner; watched Disney’s Tarzan:

Then after the kids were in bed:

I’m pretty happy to say we made it to midnight and made it through a nice bottle of champagne.

Number 4

I’m thankful for AAA batteries.  I replaced them in a toy unicorn that projects stars onto the ceiling that I got my eldest for Christmas last year and for the past three nights, we’ve done a light show before bed with my two daughters.  I’m a bit worried we’ll have to break this pattern at some stage if the novelty doesn’t wear off, but in the meantime, I bring the youngest into the bed with my eldest, and the youngest dances and tries to catch the stars on the wall, while my eldest is …. hospitable and nice most of the time and …. otherwise enduring.  It’s another one of those “this is what I pictured when I imagined parenting” moments.

This is the wonder toy of the moment!

This is the wonder toy of the moment!

Number 3

I’m thankful for my swim parka.  For anyone who has never been a competitive swimmer, you probably don’t know what I’m talking about.  I’m talking about these here ugly, yet glorious, things:

swim_parka

I got mine when I was 11 or 12, I think.  And wore it proudly through my youth swimming career and even pulled it out a few times when swimming varsity (eg: chilly mornings at Florida training camp).  I got it back permanently from my parents (with my younger brother’s name sewed into it) a few years ago.  With the Minus 35 degree temperatures over the past few days, I pulled that puppy out; wore it; and was unglamorous, but warm as toast!

It made me feel a wee bit better when one car wouldn’t start – apparently STILL too cold despite a boost from our NEW Motomaster Nautilus Recreational Power Pack (at least we’re now better prepared in the event of Zombie Apocalypse – unless it requires driving anywhere in the cold); and the back bumper partially fell off the other when going over a bump due to rust (please be fixable; please be fixable; please be fixable).  We’re taking that one in Monday knowing there are a number of other issues with it and wondering if we’ve hit the RIP moment….

Number 2

I’m thankful for my past six months blogging and the wonderful people I’ve met.  I’m thankful I figured out Twitter.  Life is more fun with those I’ve met online in it.

Number 1

In the past two weeks, I’m mainly thankful for my family and the time I got to spend with them.  I feel truly blessed and fortunate.  I’ve referenced some of that above already – Christmas and New Years – but I went to our fabulous local Ontario Early Year’s playgroups with my kids; we did play doh; we made cookies; we made muffins; we coloured; we watched movies; we slid down mountains of snow in our yard; and we went to the Science and Tech Museum where, among other things, we sent our youngest through the Crazy Kitchen for the first time.  She survived.  And it was great to see her trying to figure out why she was off-balance.

All in all?  It was a wonderful two weeks off from real life.

Back at it Monday!

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