Christmas is RUINT!

Before you panic, Christmas is not “ruint”. It’s one of those oft-repeated phrases we toss around here during this time of the year. Why? well, pull up a chair, get some eggnog…

Some of the members of my family on the female side tend to go a little overboard, searching, as we all sometimes do, for that holiday perfection. Yes, I am guilty of this myself. Now I don’t know if something specific happened, or of there was a big family blowout, but I do know a large portion of my family got quite tired of my grandmother (my mom’s mother) and her endless fiddling with everything to make it perfect. Just decorating the tree takes three days, as every ornament must be equidistant from each other. Maybe it was this, maybe it was one or more of us bawling and bellowing that something ridiculous like the silverware drawer wasn’t clean enough for company, or the bathroom wasn’t decorated just so.

And because we are family, we have no qualms about knocking each other off these pedestals of ridiculous perfection. I’m not sure who started it, maybe it was my grandfather, know as Papa to all. “That’s it!” I’ve heard him holler more than once, “Christmas is RUINED!” But given we are Maritimers through and through, and most of us have that harsh East Coast sea-faring tone to our voices, it comes out as “Christmas is RUINT!”

This week, as I have somewhat tried to cobble things together, and started to get stressed, the members of my household are quick to remind me. It’s not the perfect decorations, the magazine-like settings, the caterer-quality food, but the time we spent together. Well, there still better be enough food, they don’t care as long as it’s edible.

But anyway, when one section of lights on the fabulously decorated white and gold tree went out, right in front, we just laughed and said, “Christmas is RUINT!”

When we couldn’t find the Boney M Christmas Album, we said “Christmas is RUINT!”

We even try to find the most ridiculous suggestions of perfection and yell “Christmas is RUINT!” just because.

When I forgot to put the timer on for the gumdrop loaf Ron loves and I haven’t made in at least 3 years, using nanny’s recipe, all written over, I almost cried, but I still said with a smile, “Christmas is RUINT!” He ate it anyway.

When my mom gets here in a couple more hours, she’s probably note the wrapping paper she used doesn’t match mine OR the tree, and she’ll scream “Christmas is RUINT!” Then we’ll really laugh.

Regardless of what happens – if I get those presents finally wrapped and those jammie pants sewn, Christmas morn will still dawn like it has for two thousand years. So, on this holiday eve, may you have a great time being surrounded by family, and I hope your Christmas isn’t “RUINT!”

In the middle of it all

Hmmm, where was I? Oh yeah, Ron gave me his cold. How kind! I was out for two whole days, the rest has been catchup. We’ve been running around everywhere and I’ve been trying to finish up a few maddening things before the holidays.

Emma’s day – we made a snowman cake, seen here:
The Lighting of Waxy Sticks

Easy enough to make with 3 round pans in different sizes.

As usual, she thought her birthday was awesome. I wavered between giving her what I said I would, and giving her what I picked up for Christmas. Unfortunately, Ron & I had a conversation while I was a) sick and b) about to fall asleep after 11 pm at night.

So Emma got her Christmas present on her birthday.

(which doesn’t really matter in the long run.)

When I haven’t had brain for computer work (which I have recently had to do one thing at a time, instead of 4 at once) I’ve been out in the craft room fondling my fabric. Yesterday, I was so driven to sew, I finished up a rag quilt I started… uh… 4 years ago at least. Didn’t take any pictures yet, but it’s PINK. Pink and flannel and raggedy.

Yes, it’s for Emma. She gave it 8 thumbs up this morning. She snuggled under it after her bath and while I was still snipping the edges.

Something about the holidays makes me want to sew & create and make a whole pile of stuff. The older girls had picked out some blue flannel for pajama pants, and I have the fabric already to cut out. I hope to do that today.

Then I have two client things (okay, maybe three) I absolutely must do before the holidays and THEN I can enjoy myself and all the prep that goes with it.

Yes. I enjoy the prepping for the holidays. That’s part of the holiday for me. 😀

Emma’s Eve

Tomorrow is Emma’s eight birthday. Hard to believe, I know. Just now, she asked us that “since Christmas had an Eve, maybe we could have an Emma’s Eve for *her* birthday, and she will spin the wheel in her head to pick which present from someone she can open tonight. How does that sound?”

Swear to God, that’s what she said.


In the car recently:

Emma: “I want some mittens with fingers like Sarah has.”

Meaghan: “You mean gloves.”

Emma: “No, I mean MITTENS! With FINGERS!”

Me: “Those are gloves honey.”

Later, with Sarah in the car I looked at her mitts. She has the ones with the mitten flap that folds down to show fingerless gloves. Yep, mittens with fingers – what else do we call them?


I took Emma out shopping for presents. when we came back, we had to wrap up quickly to help not spoil any surprises. One present needed a box. Emma saw Daddy near the pile of recycling – and boxes.

Emma: “Daddy, I need a box,”

Ron: “You do?”

Emma: “Yeah, a …. slipper-sized one…”

Later, I said to Ron, “Act surprised.”

Ron: “Well, I don’t know what color they are.”


At the grocery store, the World’s Slowest Clerk In-Training is having a conversation with Emma. “What do you want for Christmas?” the clerk asks Emma.

“It’s not about what *I* want,” she says with tears welling up in her eyes, “I just want to see the looks on everyone’s faces when they open up the presents I got for them.”


Ron has been sick for the past few days. He eventually started to think that maybe it’s something like he had last time, and we’re both trying to flush out his system before it gets that bad.

So I’m up early. Sarah has to be to work for 10, and her alarm will go off any minute now. Nobody else is up, not even Meaghan, who sometimes wakes up early with me. It’s so nice and quiet. I like the leisurely pace.

And then I remembered I have a scheduled call at 10. One that has been delayed twice already.


Sometimes I wonder where all the years went. How the story goes that we celebrate today as the anniversary of the day we met, yet we had spoken before this, it’s just the one day I can really remember. Like it was last month. I sit back and think how lucky I am to have married such a wonderful man, someone to whom I can communicate without words. Just a look, an expression, a raise of an eyebrow – that can say it all.


And I’ve lived with him longer than anyone else in my entire family. He knows my mind better than I do some days, and despite that, continues to get up every morning and go to bed every night, telling me he loves me. It doesn’t seem to matter, all the in-betweens, the driving each other crazy, the witty banter, and the occasional need for a long walk.


We’re still disgustingly in love, acting like a couple of teenagers or something. And I still see that special look in his eyes.

One of those annoying exercise people

I did a workout this morning! On my elliptical machine! 😀 Sarah also loaded up my mp3 player, so I took extra time because I had to find specific songs I wanted to hear, and also there was the occasional “what the heck IS this song?”. I did a lot of skipping around, and a bit of wondering if she was trying to kill me with the fast selections.

These songs I can remember listening to all the way through, because I like to show off my indie cred in case you need some new tunes :

Milkshake- Goodnight Nurse: Punk cover of R&B/rap? I am so there.

Alice – Moby: his blog is awesome. (Hi Moby! Canada loves you!)

Shut up and let me go – The Ting Tings. Catchy!

Help I’m alive – Metric: Speaking of Canadians, Sarah has me hooked on Emily.

Shove it – Santogold: Good to slow down to.

Note: I haven’t actually watched the above videos, just linking so you can hear them.

I think I need to reorganize some subfolders and put a half-hour’s worth of tunes in each. I like to start off with a slow to medium tune, work up to fast, then finish with slower. Be prepared for some “guilty pleasure” selections to show up. I blame Sarah and Gossip Girl. (What? I have to monitor what they are watching, right? Right?)