Friday, November 30, 2012

A Christmas Princess

Yesterday, we received exciting news, when our little Tink was asked to be the Princess in our town's Christmas Parade (this evening). 
* Side Note: Tink was asked after the girl's name drawn was unable to perform her royal duties. We'll happily take Back-Up Princess!  We're not too proud!
While Tink is certainly adorable enough to be a princess... we are very aware that if we expected any daughter to be crowned atop a float... it would have been Jazz Hands Coco, for sure.  And when Coco received the news, her face instantly registered Jealousy, Anger, Unfairness and then... Smiley Joy for her Tink.  Coco is now 'So Proud'.  Not since Tink's one evening cheer leading performance, has Coco had a worthy reason to respect her Big Sista. (opinion of respect, based strictly on Coco's shallow scale.)
After receiving the news, it was clear to me that Tink lacked the appropriate snow princess attire.  Grammy immediately rushed to Macy's for a more fluffy snow white coat.  And maybe... just maybe... I'm shopping this afternoon for more accessories.
I realize, we sound a little drama.
But who expected this little baby below...
to actually gleefully remove her teeny bottom from her couch spot and command a parade float??  Not only is Tink willing to participate... but the girl was actually practicing her princess parade wave, with her Poppop!! Wha the..??!
So if my Tiny Tinkerbell attitude is gonna ditch her DS and both smile AND wave, at the same time???  By golly... I'm gonna treat her like a Princess, all day.
This must be what Gramma G, felt like...
To be a mother of Royalty.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Cyber Self-Promotion Wednesday.

Id' like to interrupt your program, to bring you this Commercial, for some local awesome talent. All prepared to help make your holidays more personal and enjoyable.
1.) Why not order your very own Conman work of art??  Suggest an idea or theme and sit back as our Elf creates a gift for a loved one... or yourself. He is extremely talented, totally under-rated (especially by himself) and uniquely original. 

2.) How about gifting your wife a new and better husband?? Coach actually can not make you a better man... but he can make you a better-lookin man!  Clean up your line for all those Christmas parties and remember... Gift Certificates are available.

3. After your fresh new hair-cut... take you favorite gal to a musical extravaganza!  Check out Chili D and The Teacher, at several local locations.  Singing all of your favorites, not to mention cool mind-blowing remixes and during the Second Hour: some pretty amusing commentary. forshizzle..

4. If you enjoy the musical stylins of our above favorite group... then you'd certainly love an entire evening devoted to Rock n Roll.  Not to mention, totally Hearting Healthy Kidneys, while celebrating our Kahuna.  Saturday, January 12th 2013.
Tickets on sale in December...

5. If all the excitement from attending Rock Concerts and dancing your night away... leaves you tired and sore (not to mention, just surviving the holidays, in general) start your New Year with a New You!! 
Visit our BlacKbird yoga sTudio..
First class is always FREE!  Gift Certificates are available, to purchase your friends and family a little health and relaxation.

All 5 Options, have Facebook pages with more details and information, to help with your holiday shopping.  And all 5 Options are owned, operated and organized by people would honestly really LOVE what they do... We aim to please!
Happy Self-Promotion Wednesday, to one and all!

Monday, November 26, 2012

Brothers and Sisters.

We were honored to have Thanksgiving at our home, again this year.  Continuing with our Annual Thanksgiving Evening Ping Pong Tournament.  Often, our life is full of Coach Style Traditions... which is not necessarily a complaint, more of a 'that's just the way our cookie has crumbled'.  Ping Pong is a tradition from my family.  In our home, we kept a Ping Pong table up in the basement for months at a time.  We would have friends over for all night tournaments or just played us four.  Everyone could usually beat mom.  No one could EVER beat dad (which was par for the course with any game we ever played, ever.)
For the second year in a row, my brother did not attend Thanksgiving.  He was having a bad day.  Unfortunately, he seems to have many bad days. I'm sure... at this point, his absence at events goes largely unnoticed.  People are aware, he is uncomfortable with crowds... and honestly, our big amazing extended family is always a crowd. 
This year, his absence was not unnoticed by me.  After all this time, I should be used too my brother's illness.  But this Thanksgiving, the void of him, felt glaring. 
I often watch Coach and his siblings, with pure awe.  They are incredibly blessed to have each other.  To have five brothers and sisters, be so in-tune with each other is a gift.  Being within their presence, is almost like a television show.  They are honestly, each other's best friends.  They are Tru-ly as amusing, as they seem.  They sparkle around each other.
The loss of my brother, to schizophrenia, is an amputation to my family.  We are still technically a functioning unit but we have lost a limb.  We can still feel the phantom pains, of it's presence... but we are completely unable to walk through life, without a significant (if not totally debilitating) limp.
I missed my brother, all day on Thursday.
I missed him, celebrating his god-son's birthday.
I missed his old humour.
I missed whispering to him, about our parents.
More than anything, I missed him at the Ping Pong table... he most certainly would have taken The Golden Paddle Crown, from Coach.   

I hope my three children, grow to be like Coach and his siblings.  I hope they become tru friends.  I hope they annoy/seriously amuse each other with daily mass test messages.  I pray they consider vacationing together fun and not a chore.  When they leave the house for a drink, or run out of gas, or need help carrying something heavy... I hope they are each other's first phone call.

Above all...
I hope they always have each other.
It is much to painful, to not have.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Double Ones.

In the past 12 months...
You have: traveled to at least 5-6 new States, in 3 separate road trips. Visiting museums, historical landmarks, 1 new Ocean and countless water slides.
You have: purchased (well, we did) and managed new contact lenses, lost a handful of teeth, grown 2 more shoe sizes and at least 4 inches.
You have: started a new school.  Joined the Speech team (and won!). Began accelerated projects, earned High Honor Roll, mastered First Base and joined the 6th Grade Basketball Team.
You have: met several new friends.  Flown out the door to events, parties, dances and sleepovers. Had 'girlfriends-ish' and joined the Jr high Youth Group.
We have: remodeled your bedroom into a 'big kid room'. Bought you a phone (Ugh! Yuck!) And replaced your jean size twice.
You are becoming all I've ever dreamt for you.  And all the while, I have become more of a spectator and less of a participant, in your life. Which I realize is exactly as it is meant to be... but it all happened so quickly.

You've experienced so much growth, this year.  Emotionally and physically.  Shedding all of your toddlerness, each and every day.  Marching towards your teenage years, in warp speed.  I can still see the fullness in your cheeks.  You occasionally allow for a quick couch cuddle (barely) and a kiss goodnite.  You have a few baby teeth left, before braces.  And your voice is still sweetly my little boy's... but I can see you starting to round the turn.

You are so worldly.  A trait, I am proud to have passed to you. You have such a zest for travel.  If I ever 'won great riches' I would immediately use my wealth to take you all over the world.  To teach you new languages.  To frequent the most amazing museums and historical monuments. I would love to experience different cultures and people, through your wonderment.  So often your (many many) questions, are left unanswered during my busy day.... I would love for the opportunity to feed your mind knowledge directly from the Rues of Paris, or the shores of exotic beaches. You literally, Deserve the World.

Thankfully, you are still adorably naive on occasion. Though, I am unsure how... as you have been forced too often to understand the heart-ache of the adult world. You have done an amazing job, loving and tolerating your Uncle. I am proud you have been raised to care unconditionally and without prejudice. Undoubtedly, your Uncle is helping to make you a better man. Your loyalty and devotion, are unmatched.  Unfortunately, often leaving you disappointed and confused by those less kind. I pray your heart remains as pure as the world will allow.

Obviously, your mind is the most amazing thing I have ever helped to create.  Yes, I am proud of your untarnished run on the High Honor Roll... but I am speaking of more than grades.
Each day, you are excited to learn something new.  You are a sponge for information.  You absorb every detail, from the world around you.  You pore over travel maps, museum pamphlets, biographies, informational packets.  Wikepedia was created specifically for you.  Undoubtedly, Siri will become your new best friend.
More than any thing I wish that you never lose this trait. Center on my Vision Board, is a picture of you proudly walking with friends across an Ivy League campus (after you've earned a scholarship, of course.)

I hope one day you realize, each step Dad and I have taken, has been to lay your path. Your joy, your smile, your feeling of comfort and safety is our greatest accomplishment.  We would literally, give up our every thing... to make you some thing.  Parenting is without question, the most excruciatingly difficult job any person can accept.  But your small successes, are our biggest rewards.
Don't you know yet, Kid??
You are the best thing that ever happened to me.
Happy Birthday, my Thanksgiving baby.
I am forever Thankful, you have flipped my world upside down.  You are my purpose.  It is my honor, to be Your Biggest Fan.

Out on the ocean sailing away
I can hardly wait
To see you come of age
But I guess we'll both just have to be patient
'Cause it's a long way to go
A hard row to hoe
Yes it's a long way to go
But in the meantime

Before you cross the street
Take my hand
Life is what happens to you
While you're busy making other plans

Before you go to sleep
Say a little prayer
Every day in every way
It's getting better and better

Beautiful, beautiful, beautiful
Beautiful boy

-John Lennon

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Sometimes, Parenting is Fun.

Thanksgiving is The Kid's birthday. And MUCH to my dismay, we purchased him a phone. I maintain, he is still much too young but with the new school and basketball practices, it just feels more safe.
Sooo... Monday night, after his basketball game: I offered to carry his gym bag out to the truck. In the process, I secretly slipped the phone into the bag and then placed it in the backseat with him. After a few minutes on the road, Coach began calling the phone... And the joke/end result TOOK FOREVER!!
I recorded the event and it's pretty amusing.
It's dark and poor quality but still amusing.

Side Note: Yes, I look less than adorable. Listen... Sometimes, Parenting is Fun. Sometimes, it is exhausting... the video is a little of both.

Side Note Part Deux: If you're a creepy Internet Stalker and you think you're about to turn my child's phone into an episode of Law & Order SVU... uhhhh Good Luck to you.  I'm an uber controlling mother (ask anyone) and I will go Spider Monkey all over your a$$.  For Realz. I don't play. 
PS- Same threat goes for annoying Junior-High Girls... Try to show some self-control ladies.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Few Things from the Past Week:

1.) The Commish made some funnies on Facebook.
First posting this Comment...

"The fastest way to end your NFL career is to be a starter on my fantasy football team."

And Then... This Picture.
With the Caption.. "Like, if you can find me..."
You should also know.  He has never been nor will be a hunter.  He dressed in full (I'm assuming borrowed) camo to play paint ball with 11 yr old nephews.
2.) I left my home, no less than 3 times, wearing slippers.  Proving I have to be neither 73 yrs old OR living in the country... to start dressing like an Eccentric Old Country Lady.  Also proving, I care very little about embarrassing my husband or children.
3.) The Following Conversation occurred between the girls, while watching the American Music Awards.
Coco: I'm gonna be a rock star jus like dat... when I'm big. I'm gonna be on TB and dance and sing jus like a rweal rock star.  Will dat make you berry happy?!
Me: I would Love that!  I will watch you on TV.
Tink: Me TOO!!  Me TOO!! 
Me: You're going to be a Rock Star just like Coco?  I promise I will watch both of you on TV too.
Tink (signature bored eye roll): Ummm... No.  I'm not going to be on TV.  I'm just going to WATCH Coco on TV, with you.
Me: Way to aim for the stars, little girl.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Yes. I will take Coach, til...

Early Fall was surprising for me.  Our marriage had an 'emotional growth spurt' for lack of a better term.  Coach traded in his adorable Lil Boy Truck for an Almost Totally Grown-Man Truck. My health had a rough spot, my babies left for big kid schools and my dear father-in-law had a shocking medical scare.
As mentioned, my Coach is easily the happiest person, I know.  The most sun-shiny part of my life.  During The Weekend We Pretend Did Not Happen... my sweet husband was literally stricken by the shock of kinda facing the possible loss of his father.  To witness Coach, struggle with sad emotions was too much to bare.  And I was struck by a thought, which was equally as shocking for me:
One day, Coach and I are going to lose our parents.  One day, we are going to lose a sibling.
One day, we will Lose Each Other.  Because (and this was my Big Revelation) Coach and I are actually, Growing Old Together.
"Uhhh... Duh Tru Stories! Obviously, you are going to grow old together!  Wasn't that the WHOLE POINT when you married the man? It took THIS LONG for you to realize THAT??"
Good point.
Except, it did take this long.  Despite my mostly serious exterior.. I am an ignorantly optimistic person.  I rarely, plan into the future.  Of course, I dream of Paris for my 40th birthday.  And yes, I am mentally creating floor plans, for our zombie proof dream house (that's just being smart and proactive).
But actually planning for a long lifetime together, which will inevitably include heart-ache, loss and disappointment, which we will HAVE to face as a couple?? Honestly, never really occurred to me.
But we ARE currently Growing Old Together.
We are really in this for the long haul.
And I could not have found a better partner.  Because (also previously mentioned) Coach is exactly who he has always been.  He will always be, exactly who he is now.  The man he woke up as today, at 31 years old... is the same man, he will be at 71 yrs old.
He will just as happily show-case his little old man legs in basketball shorts.  He will likely lose his hair (sadly sooner than later) but it will hardly make a difference, as he will still sport a Cubs hat, on his wrinkled head.  His laugh lines will deepen but he will still be sent into uncontrollable fits of giggles, from his extremely HiLarious siblings.
If we're really growing-up together, here's the deal:
Promise me, for every heart-break, there are twice as many heart-warming moments.
For each loss, there will be so many more gains.
For every cry, there will be a lifetime of countless bedtime chats, while covering our mouth giggles.
And I will promise you the same.
Our babies are growing-up (I hate it). One day, it really will just be us and I am truthfully lucky for that.  Because no one ever, has wanted LESS Coach time. 
Happy Birthday to my Husband.
I look forward, to a lifetime of many more.
You will always be, the very best slightly-belated birthday present, I have ever received.

Grow old along with me
The best is yet to be
When our time has come
We will be as one
God bless our love
God bless our love
Grow old along with me
Two branches of one tree
Face the setting sun
When the day is done
God bless our love
God bless our love
Spending our lives together
Man and wife together
World without end
World without end
Grow old along with me
Whatever fate decrees
We will see it through
For our love is Tru
God bless our love
God bless our love

-John Lennon

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Sooo... 96 years Ago:

- The light switch was just invented.
- The Cubs played their 1st game at Wrigley Field.
- Day Light Savings Time begins.
- A five-person 1-shark attack occurs off the Jersey Shore, inspiring the story for the movie Jaws.
- Rembrandt died.
- Claude Monet was painting the Water Lilies series.
- Albert Einstein completes his Theory of Relativity.
- The Red Sox won the world series.
- A stamp cost $0.02
- Gregory Peck and Kirk Douglas were born.
And so was.. Lil GG.
Since her birth:
- We have fought and won 2 World Wars.
- There have been 16 presidents.
- A Great Depression.
- The Red Sox won the World Series 3 more times (with an 86 year losing streak).  The Cubs... still play at Wrigley Field but unfortunately, even at 96 years young, Lil GG HAS NOT lived through a Chicago Cubs World Series win.
The Following Items have been invented, since the birth and during the Lifetime of Lil GG:
blenders, bubble gum, sun glasses, shopping carts, beach balls, deodorant,
... oh and the Chocolate Chip Cookie!!
In 96 years:
Lil GG has loved.  She has lost.  Her loving husband.  Her beautiful daughter.  She has mothered 4 good and kind children.  She is a grandmother and great-grandmother to countless other very good and kind (and funny!) people.
She has created a legacy.
She is the very definition of the word amazing. 
(Still and ALWAYS my Favorite Pic of Lil GG)
Happy 96th Birthday Lil GG.
And here's to many more....
(At this point, you at least need to stick around for that Cubs World Series win... it's just HAS be almost be their year... Right?!)

And then... 92 years Later:

Our Joy was born.
Like GG, Tink and Galway Girl before her... Joy is a slight little Sprite of a girl.  Yet, just because she may come in a small package (again.. like the three ladies before her) Joy is tough, confident and completely and totally prepared to Hold her Own.
The Kid's only truly brown-eyed partner in crime.
And Coco's Best Cousin Friend Forever. (we like to birth cousins in pairs... it makes it much easier to ignore them, while they play at family gatherings!)

Joy is sparkly, giggly, winking while she's trouble, sweet and teensy.  But she "Is. Not. Cute!"  Don't even think of telling her, otherwise.  Rookie Mistake.
I love to (force) hug her.  I love to Aunt her.  I love to watch her tiny legs in leggins.  She is a cutely distracted, adorable addition to my Children's Yoga.  Except during breathing exercise.  That lady seriously loves to get her cleansing breath-on.
Happy 4th Birthday, Joy!!
This family is more Joy-Full, thanks to your smile!
(Birthday Post slightly late, to help extend her birthday to a full week...  Almost-Aunt Sweetbreads style.)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Deep Talks

(The Kid, at his game)
While watching "We Bought a Zoo" with The Kid 
(a movie about a father, with two kids, whom lost his wife) I asked The Kid and Coach a question.
Me: How do you think Dad would manage if you guys lost me? Do you think he could handle it or would life be a mess??
The Kid: I think Dad could manage. But things would be different because we'd probably be living on an NBA bus, traveling all over the country.
Me: You think if I died, Dad would start playing professional basketball??!
The Kid: Probably.  And he'd drag us with him.
Me (looking at both of them in surprised disbelief):
So what you're saying is... without me in his life, Dad would be a professional athlete??  Because being married to me, is the only thing that has been holding him back from the NBA?!
The Kid nodded.
I looked at Coach.
Coach shrugged his shoulders knowingly, raised an eyebrow and smirked a little: Listen... I didn't say it... but The Kid knows what he's talkin about...

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Stop. It.

Saturday, The Kid received a First Place in his Speech contest.  He was absolutely phenomenal.  I watch the entire 9 minutes, through blurred tears.  Continually, amazed by his endless well of talent.
Tuesday evening, The Kid played in his first Junior High basketball game.  He is new to the team but we saw tremendous promise.  His father favorite part: "He was excited.  He played the game like he loved it."  For me, The Kid played the game like his Uncle.
And Friday evening, following practice, The Kid will attend his first Boy/Girl Jr High Dance.
Stop. It.

But.. he used to dance with me.
Every night, I slow danced The Kid to sleep.
My little chubby, toddler snuggle boy.
Ouch. Ouch. Ouch.
I'm so happy The Kid found his place.  It's just, I don't know... did he HAVE to leave me behind??

I bless the day I found you
I want to stay around you
And so I beg you, let it be me