Sunday, December 20, 2009

Letters To Santa

It is that time of year again. Time to write our letters to Santa. I just hope they make it to the North Pole in time for him to receive their sentiments before he takes off on his magical flight.

I'm not sure these letters top last year's classics (especially Lauren's exclamation of needing a fresh diaper!), but nevertheless, they are timeless treasures.

Lauren's Letter

Dear Santa Claus,

I want a Bubba. I want a Christmas tree. Umm, I want, umm, a necklace. I want a Band-Aid. I want a stroller. I want Santa. I want cookies, apples, umm gumballs. A helicopter, umm, I want an ice cream cone. I finish my milk. I want Play-Doh, licorice.

I saw the reindeer on the roof of your shop at the North Pole. I was nice. That's it, let me write my name. I'm not Lauren, I'm Ord.



Abigail's Letter

Dear Santa Claus,

I like Play-Doh. I like M&Ms. I like Santa Claus. I like reindeer. I like snowmans. I like cards. I like Christmas trees.

What is Mrs. Claus doing at the North Pole? Dying?

Where is your bed? What is Mrs. Claus doing to the vacuum?

It was nice to see you at preschool. Everyone was being naughty upstairs, and Santa was downstairs.

Santa Claus, I want you to eat my apples.

Your friend,


The Best Christmas Gift Ever.... Opened

The best Christmas gift ever lived up to it's name. Because we will not be celebrating Christmas at our house, but instead traveling hundreds of miles to be with family, we decided to open up our gift here this morning. What Geoff and I got in that special little package is sure to be treasured for the rest of our lives each Christmas season.

Thank you, Abigail!

Friday, December 18, 2009

The Best Christmas Gift.... Ever!

The best Christmas gift I've ever gotten is sitting under our Christmas tree. It isn't open yet. I don't even know what it is. But it is from Abby. Delicately wrapped with a handmade card; the first of many special school treasures I'm sure. No doubt it is something only she could deliver.

But then I think the best Christmas gift might be at home, back in Minnesota, sitting in their chairs. My grandparents.

For me the real treasures of the season are being with the ones I love. I never could have appreciated these gifts fully if I didn't know what Christmas was like without all of them. But this Christmas I will have them all. What a wonderful Christmas.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

The Book

I'm not really sure where the idea came from. I do know that it came to me when we were stationed in Florida. Perhaps it was my need to get out of there, out into the real world. Maybe it was being cooped up in the house with two babies that gave me the brilliant idea. Nevertheless, the concept was born. And once we moved to Ohio I set the books in motion.

There are two books, really. And the notion is simple. I chose a topic, two, because they were two topics that I just can't seem to get enough of. One book is about September 11th, the other about life lessons, life experiences, and/or advice.... personal stories.

I did the first page of the September 11th book. The premise of the book is to gather the stories of America into one book I could give to my young daughters who were not yet alive on that beautiful Tuesday morning that forever changed our country. I wrote of where I was that day and how it affected me. I included a picture of me with my grandmother standing on the Jersey shore (ironically, my grandmother was born & raised in New Jersey, which made it even more personal) with the Twin Towers looming behind us just one year before they fell. And that was it. I passed the book to a friend with direct instructions for her to do the same, complete one page about where she was on September 11, 2001, then pass it on to someone whom she thought had a story to tell and would do the same. When each page is complete there are instructions on where to send the book; back to me.

The second book is a little more open-ended. This time I did not start the book, just left instructions. I'm looking for a book of wisdom. Advice, if you will. Everybody has some, and everyone's experience tells a different tale. I sent the book off asking the recipient to document on one page a special life experience they would like to share. I have no idea what direction this book will take.

And I have no idea where these books are. I'm hoping whomever is fortunate enough to be in possession realizes that they hold the book because they have something important to share. And I'm hoping that people from all walks of life get the chance to add their own touches on the book. Because if they do, my children will be in possession of one of the greatest gifts I could give them.... A unique perspective created just for them.

I don't know how long it will take, or if I will even get my books back. I don't think they could ever be published, even if I do. But there is no doubt in my mind that if I do gain possession of these treasures there are lessons the lovelies and I can share for years to come.

Reading really can take you places.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Gingerbread Houses & Sugar Cone Trees

Gingerbread Houses
6 graham cracker squares per house
candy decorations
1 small plate/foundation per house

Using four of the squares as the base, use the icing to glue the edges together to create a box that is open to the top. Use the remaining two graham cracker squares for the roof, gluing the edges and place on top of the open box.

Allow several hours for the icing to dry and the house to stabilize before decorating.

Decorate the houses by using the icing as glue to hold the decorations on the house.

Sugar Cone Trees

1 sugar cone per person
candy decorations
1 small plate/foundation per tree

Dip the open part of the cone in the icing and stick to the bottom of the plate. This will help hold the cone in place. [This does not need to be done in advance.]

Use the icing as a glue to hold the decorations on and, if desired, around the tree.

Candy Decorations can include, but are not limited to:

-gum drops, sliced in half to create flat side for sticking
-candy canes
-striped chocolate chips
-frosted animal crackers

It is best to use light-weight candies. Anything too heavy will have to be held in place until the icing hardens or placed at the bottom to rest on the plate.

Royal Icing Recipe

3 egg whites, room temperature--unbeaten
1 lb. powdered sugar
1/2 tsp. cream of tartar

Beat all three ingredients on low speed until well blended. Beat on high speed for several minutes, until icing is light and fluffy.

I like to use a my large Pampered Chef batter bowl to mix the icing. This way I can slip the cover back on and use the rest of the icing to decorate gingerbread houses a few hours later, when they've had time to set.

The icing is safe to consume, but I don't recommend over-indulging since it is made with uncooked egg whites.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

The Worst Toys of Christmas

If you know my kids chances are pretty good you know what toys they have. If you really know my kids, you know what they like. So instead of composing a wish list this year, I put together a list of the worst toys to give kids this Christmas. I'll throw out the disclaimer now.... this list is in no way meant to offend anyone's economic, sexual, professional, or genetic orientation. It's simply a list of 'what were they thinking?' items. The toys themselves are entertaining, but in many cases the write-ups on the links are priceless.

No. 12 Sugar Daddy Ken Doll

No. 11 The Face Bank

No. 10 Dr. Drill 'N Fill Play-Doh Set

No. 9 Garden Zombie

No. 8 Yodelling Lederhosen

No. 7 Blippy in the Box

No. 6 Squirrel Underpants

No. 5 Breast Feeding Baby Dolls

No. 4 Giant Mutant Cockroach

No. 3 Japanese Toilet

No. 2 Shave the Baby Doll

And the No. 1 item on my item on 2009's worst toy list:

Hermaphrodite Dolls

Saturday, December 5, 2009

The Ungrammatical Period

There comes a time in every young girl's life when she discovers she will be a woman. First she fantasizes about what life will be like with boobies, a husband, babies.... And then one day the fantasy is squashed by glimpses of reality. Today was Abby's day. The day she learned the truth about periods, and I'm not referring to the grammatical kind. The following are three statements she actually made to her dad:

"I don't want a crotch."
"I'm not gonna take care of it."
"I want it out of me."

Ironically, all three end with a period.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Food For Thought

I try to be very honest with the girls. While their innocence is cute, I try my best to arm them with information, teaching them about life and the world around them. We talk about everything from the nutritional value of the food they eat, to sewers and septic tanks. It is obvious to me from Abby's comments today that she is making connections, and it is sinking in....

"Poop comes from lunch." And after a little more thought, "And pee comes from lemonade."

You get the idea.


{About Me}

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Fairborn, Ohio, United States
I'm a teacher by trade, writer at heart & mom in every sense of my being. I never considered writing as a profession, but after I got married and began moving around the country, I began sharing my adventures, misadventures & updates through a sort of e-mail newsletter. I found a true passion in unconventional story-telling that has followed me into motherhood.