2016 total: $9901.02


Some Toys Never Lose Their Cool



Putting the Cute in HCN

Mila and I usually talk all the way to school. The morning conversation starts with her telling me that sissy is riding the bus, and then it progresses to what animals she will see as we drive down the road. Cows and horses are a guarantee, but then she ponders if she will see any turkeys that day.

The turkey says, "bobble, bobble," by the way.

Mila talks about friends, any buses she might see, what she's hoping to eat that day ... all sorts of things. She essentially doesn't stop talking for the entirety of the 12-minute drive.

I suppose that's for a reason. When Alexis is also in the car, Mila is quiet. She's listening. I think her alone-in-the-car time is her best shot at getting a word in edgewise. Which, it rules. I'm more than happy to listen to her ramble on and on in her tiny little voice.

It's especially entertaining when she talks about things that are weird for a 2 year-old to talk about.

We were a collective hot mess this morning. Alexis slept through her alarm. I willfully ignored my alarm. Mila just plain doesn't do early. Combine the three of us, and I was super late leaving the house. One thing led to another and I ended up taking a work call in the car. It started right after the cows, but before the horses, and lasted all the way to the school parking lot.

Mila kept talking all the way through it. She honestly doesn't care if I'm listening or not; she's in it for the joy of forming the words.

She didn't seem to care that she could hear both sides of my conversation, either. She was laser focused on her words and paid no mind to what the caller was saying over my car speakers (all hail bluetooth connecting to the car!). It wouldn't have mattered if she was paying attention or not because the call was all sorts of technical and stuff. Lots of big words. Science words, even. It's almost like I have a real job that actually requires a certain level of education or something.


It was as we were pulling into the parking lot that I realized Mila was listening a bit more than I thought she was.

"That will work," she said. She was parroting something that I had said moments earlier. She continued the parroting, "Do you need hydrogen cyanide, too?" she asked.

You guys, you haven't lived until you've heard a tiny little 2 year-old try to pronounce "hydrogen cyanide." My only regret is that I don't have it on video. Because ADORABLE.



A Plan. I Have a Plan.

It's probably not much of a surprise that I want to keep Christmas decorations up well past the holiday. I like the sparkle and shine (A LOT) and I see no good reason to pack it all into boxes and plunge into the darkness of January.

It's dumb, really. All of the coldest and darkest months of the year should be filled with dancing lights.

Sadly, I'm the only one in the house who thinks that way and has arms long enough to put up a fight. Which is to say, SOMEONE started putting all of my trees away last week. There's only one left at this point.


The worst part is that Alexis is in on the betrayal. She has it in her head that all of the Christmas decorations have to be gone before her birthday. She seems to think she's having a party or something and doesn't want to be embarrassed by trees everywhere. Except, well, she needs *me* to have a birthday party so maybe she should think about *me* and my sparkly feelings. Ahem.

It's all about me.

And Mila.

Mila had her very own tree in her bedroom. It was magical and fantastic and wonderful because she loved having a tree in her room. She visited all of the ornaments and moved them around and generally gazed happily at her tree.

And it went it away.

Mila didn't notice that her tree was gone at first. Noticing that it was gone before bedtime on the first night of its absence would have been too simple. Instead, she noticed it the second night and then SHE WOULDN'T LET GO OMG.

It has been five days since Mila's tree went into storage. Four of those five days, she has yelled at me about her tree. At 2:00 in the morning. I don't know what it is about 2:00 am that makes her realize she misses having a tree in her room, but there it is. The kid is waking up in the middle of the night, realizing that her tree is gone, and throwing a massive fit.

It's the saddest fit, by the way. It includes a quivering lip and tears and a shaky voice that whispers, "My tree ..."

Basically, the kid speaks my soul. She puts words and tears to my feelings. She could stand to point that sadness at the right people, but whatever. She's sad.

All of the sad.

So when you see me out this week shopping for a new Christmas tree, please know that it's so I can make my kid happy. It's far easier to buy a new tree than it is to yank Mila's out of storage. And, really, I can't keep doing this 2:00 am thing.

I wonder what Miss I Want a Christmas-Free Birthday Party will think when I bring home a 12 foot tree and put it in the hallway between the girls' rooms?