...so we had a little snow storm. Four inches, to be exact.
And for each inch of snow we got, we also got one day off school (and work).
By today, the kids and I needed out. So we made a list.
And yes, I made a mistake about who we were having lunch with. My friend Kelli probably would've re-written the list. Paper is from Pinhole Press.
We were off. It was cold. We decided to skip music class.
We stopped for our fuel first.
Then it was off to Target. Also known as the Choo Choo Store. Charlie doesn't really even look at the trains any more, but I'm pretty sure it will always be called the Choo Choo Store. He gets really confused when someone tries to talk to him about how much he loves Target.
I let he and Clara live the dream...The ability to wander around Target with me not nagging them to keep on moving. It literally was like a kid in a candy store. With a rolling suitcase.
...Then it was off to the mall for a ride on the mall choo choo. Oh yes, I was that mom. I swear the two of them were looking at each other and saying, "What is up with her?"
We never go to the mall. The two of them kind of walk around in lost amazement when we do.
...then to the LEGO store. Charlie's first time.
Then lunch with Daddy (we're doing good with the list, aren't we?)
Why yes, that's soup in her hair.
Then it was time for home. None of us had the energy for the bookstore. Everyone fell asleep in the car (including me in the driveway while waiting for them to wake up).
Time to build some Legos. I, uh, kind of feel like you need a Ph.D. in engineering to put these things together now.
Some re-fueling and we were off to the Kid's Gym. Every child in our county has not been in school for a week, and they were all at the gym.
We ended the day as you should a day like this...with milkshakes.
...pinterest really is a wonderful thing, because it ever-so-subtly gives hints to your husband-who-likes-to-plug-things-in that you might want, well, something that doesn't plug in. Like a typewriter.
When I opened this baby up on Christmas morning the first thing that overwhelmed me was, "It smells like Pop Pop." Well, not exactly like my grandfather. But like an old man's office. Like my Pop Pop. The other night, I left the lid open after scrapbooking and came in the next morning overwhelmed by the smell. Maybe he's here.
After taking a little time off, I'm in full-on catch-up mode (probably should've saved this for the Olympics when I stay up to times I have no business staying up until). And I'm using the typewriter for it all.
I asked Ken if it sounds like I'm pounding out the Next Great American Novel down here. I forgot how LOUD a typewriter is. I find myself wondering who it belonged to.
...probably the most important on-going list in my life...my work to-do list. I have been working for 13 years and I'm pretty sure on my first day of work I started using a Steno notebook (an ode to my journalism major?) and never looked back. It takes me more than a year to fill one up, but I do. And I save them.
When I came back to work after having Charlie, I attempted to use a different kind of notebook (one that had different sections, figuring I need a section for home-life and a section for work-life) and one my colleagues told me it actually made her feel uneasy to see me with a different notebook, like I wasn't the same person. It didn't work out and I soon broke things off with the new guy and brought back the trusty Steno.
Unlike my pre-Christmas list, I can usually understand most of these notes and they are better written. And yes, I have been known on occasion to write things in here that are already done just to feel some sense of accomplishment at the end of a day.
And look! I only had to smudge out one of my top-secret to-do items. ;)
...am watching Ohio State football. Eating extremely salty popcorn and hershey kisses. Sitting on the computer, ordering four months of photos to catch up on my scrapbooks. Perusing pinterest for the first time in a long time.
...the whole time well-aware of how different tonight could have been if I didn't get this text from my dad today:
The weeks leading up to my mom's scans are always tense.
I found the acorn on the right a few months ago when my mom was here visiting and she said maybe it was, "Left here," from her grandfather, my great-grandfather, who was a woodworker.
With what's happened with my mom, I look for signs everywhere that maybe a miracle will happen.
A funny cloud in the sky, a smell that reminds me of someone, anything.
I hadn't felt, seen, realized any signs in the weeks leading up to this scan. No Jesus on my grilled cheese, no cigarette smoke smell reminding me that my grandmother was here, no streak across the sky making me think someone up there was looking out for us. Then, the other day at a friend's house, Charlie came marching up to me with this nut and said, "I found dis for you." Everything in my mind screamed, "THE SIGN! THE SIGN!"
Yes, it's just an acorn. But clearly, people, it worked.
Am I the only list-maker in the world who throws out all spelling/grammar/handwriting rules when it comes to list-making? Especially lists that are made two days before Christmas with small children when you feel like your mind might.just.explode. You put things like, "MM's" on there and then scratch your head, walking back and forth trying to re-create what the hell that actually means. At one point, in an effort to keep your house from eating itself, you throw the list in the trash, leading to the crinkled, I-hope-that's-grapefruit-juice stain on the right side. You actually put things like, "Shower," on the list. And when your husband offers to clean the bathroom and vacuum, you write his name next to it, but don't cross it off. You have things like buttcream on there because it's a reality. And by, "Pack kids," you don't mean actually putting them in a suitcase. Just their stuff. Promise. You make every call you need to make and wrap every present that needs to be wrapped. You mostly use the same pen except for the random red crayon. You use three methods of crossing things off: the big X, the check mark, and the physical crossing off. And yet, driving up to Pennsylvania mid-day on Christmas, you realize you still managed to forget something.
And the floors still haven't been cleaned.
This post is part of a new thing I'm doing with some old friends called Lists with Friends. I hope to do one-list-type-post per week for the next year. #listswithfriends2014