Creativity · Family · Parenting · Perspective

Ode to Elementary Valentines Day

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Hustle! Rush!
Get everything on the list.
Cutting boards and cookie cutters.
Should be as simple as a flick of the wrist.

Pens. Erasers.
One First grader and One Preschool.
Lists of names and Scotch tape.
Whoever commercialized Valentine’s Day was no fool.

Minions. Peppa Pig.
Friendship Bracelets and Fruit by the Foot.
Starts smiling and ends gritting teeth.
Almost 50 kid scrawled names – Creativity kaput.

Salty. Mostly Sweet.
Fruit skewered and Jello Poke Cake made.
Last Minute Reminder note sent home!!!
My heart is full but my neurons fade.

Cool Whip. Pretzels.
Kids excited and to school on time.
Mom looks like a wreck and laughs.
Off to work. To-do list mountain climbed.

We survived elementary school Valentine’s Day 2017.

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#wordplay

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Snack bags and fruit skewers. Cake not pictured because I was trying to frost it with frozen Cool Whip in the parking lot at the school this morning – which was after I ran to the store to buy the Cool Whip that I didn’t know I needed until the note above came home last night… Gave up and sent the tub with a spatula. And apparently unknowingly did all of this with doughnut frosting on my face because people, this. is. life.

Family · Perspective

Valentine’s Day

We’ve rolled into February. On January 30, I nearly had an anxiety attack looking at the schedule for this month. I fended it off with a quick two mile run after I dropped the kids off at school. Just. Breathe.

February – Groundhog Day Treats at School – Two Saturday mornings of basketball – My 6m Check-Up at the Neurologist which requires 15hrs of driving roundtrip for 30 minutes in the clinic- Wedding in Fayetteville, AR – Trip for work to Orlando, FL – Kids – Work – Carpool…

And Valentine’s Day?

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I’m being bombarded by ads of women in sexy lingerie and gifts shaped like hearts while sappy songs about mushy smushy love serenade me on the radio. Bleh.

I’m truly happy for people who love Valentine’s Day. It’s never really been our thing. Even when we were still dating we didn’t really DO Valentine’s Day. I did not marry this man who I love passionately for his level of romance.

College Valentine’s Day on year 3 of dating (2004) – Wendy’s d2zedifh1n0ecqk4Drive Thru, couch at the Hartford St. rental house, Cops on TV. Nothing says romance quite like a $0.99 carton of chicken nuggets! Mushy type of love? Not so much. It does make a humorous story that made me roll my eyes then and makes me smile now.

In my younger adolescent years, I dreamed of getting flowers just “because’ but I found that not really a reality. I’m not excited about gifts.

I thought I wanted a guy to go to Rom-Com movies with me. Honestly, my sisters and girlfriends are better company for that!

And if I’m being honest, I don’t really like things that are heart-shaped for myself. I’ll draw that shape all over pictures for my kids, but for me, nah.

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In my reality, what I enjoy is a spontaneous night out – even if it is just for groceries and dinner sans kids. I won’t go into intimate details – the world wide web isn’t a private place to talk – but suffice it to say, I don’t need to be showered with extra love on 1 out of 365 days. We pay attention to each other and work through our less-than-stellar moments. He’s my best friend and I’m his. We enjoy being together.

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Will I get a card for Valentine’s Day? Maybe. It’ll be signed from him and the kids. I’ll get each of the kids a shiny helium-filled balloon for the day because those things are special moments for my kids. I might even drape myself in something ridiculous that sits in places that are inappropriate to talk about… or I might not. I’m doubtful that the date on the calendar will be the key red or green light for my husband. Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to be over-the-top or actually, any different than any other day.

After writing this all out, I’m going to drop Valentine’s Day from my list of stresses and concerns this year.

I’m choosing to focus on all the other days we have together and I’ll treat Valentine’s Day as just another day on the calendar. I’m sure I’ll channel surf right on past the mushy songs. I usually do. I’ll bypass the chocolates and ignore the air brushed awkward looking women in weird contorted positions wearing nothing but underwires and v-strings (Yes Vicky’s Secret… I saw that ad).

We’ll likely eat at home with our kids that night and talk and laugh about the day. We’ll address the issues as they come. As friends, husband and wife, parents and as a family, we will keep it simple. It works for us.

Family · Love

Pioneer Women & Valentines

The office my husband and I share is flipping frigid. It is 8 outside, which is a vast improvement over the -4 where we started the day yesterday. A way to watch expenses now that propane is >$4.00 a gallon is to keep the office a lower temperature. I have an electric heater by my feet. I wear two long sleeve shirts, my wool coat, scarf and a fingerless glove on my right hand (heater is on my left side), as well as long pants, tall socks, and winter insulated boots to work to keep warm.

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We’ve decided I would be a bad Kansas pioneer woman. 

I told the hubs in a moment of frostbite that if I was on the prairie in pioneer times, he would have just had to leave me to die in the cold.  His reply: “I’d have had to just leave you dead in a snowbank. Ground would be too hard to bury you.”
Yep. That’s my romantic valentine.
What was I expecting? A “Oh no. I’d find a way to keep you warm?” Nope. Not my Romeo.

Although I do think he would turn the world upside down to find a way to help me if this was reality.

Made us both laugh. Glad I married a man who makes me laugh and enjoys spending time with me. We appreciate each day together. It’s fun. Sometimes it feels like we are still dating after 8.5 yrs of marriage and 2 kids. The butterflies and spark are still there.
PS – I’m not expecting anything for Valentine’s Day. He told me he wasn’t even sure what day it was and that it was a stupid holiday.
Honestly, I agree.