I Can See Carrots Growing Back There!

Someone once told me, “Christmas is a woman’s holiday,” and three children later, I have to agree.  The organizing, the shopping, the wrapping, the baking, the cooking, the cleaning…while I’m not without help (thank you, handsome man), I’m afraid the lion’s share of the yule does fall mainly onto my plate.  And I don’t think I’m alone.  I watched my grandmother, my mother and my sister all navigate their way through their own holiday preparations this year, and at times it seemed as though there was no end to our collective “busy”ness.  So today, I was going to wax poetic on moms – the sacrifice, the selflessness, the grace….

mom-2And then I stumbled across this laugh-out-loud article on “motherisms,” and I had to share. I’d like to tell you the tradition of these words ended with me, and I have never-once-no-not-ever uttered them to my children, but we all know better. And even if we didn’t, my girls would bust me for sure. Read and enjoy; it’s okay to laugh at yourself.

“In our house, you follow our rules.”

“Elbows off the table.”

“Measure twice, cut once.”

“Two wrongs don’t make a right.”

“I’m not going to ask you again.”

“Just roll up the sleeves.”

“A place for everything and everything in it’s place.”

“Just scrape off the burnt part. It’s still good.”

“A little bird told me.”

“I didn’t ask who put it there.  I asked you to pick it up.”

“I don’t care who started it.”

“You just ate!”

“But your closet is FULL of clothes.”

“Because I said so.”

“Finish your meal. There are children starving in (insert name of impoverished country).”

“You’ll grow into them.”

“I’m not your maid.”

“Are you wearing that?”

“This looks like a tornado hit it.”

“I’m not an ATM.”

“That’s one…that’s two…”

“How do you know you don’t like it if you haven’t tried it?”

And then of course there’s the best motherism of all, which is:

“I love you.”

And in case you haven’t seen it, nothing beats admitting you say all of these “motherisms” than hearing them sung all at once. Check out Anita Renfroe’s “Momisms!”

Merry Happy!

My birthday is on Christmas.  I know.  That makes me one jolly, holy, heckuva gal, right?  But in addition to the sleigh I keep in my garage and the halo you see above my head (look carefully!), it also makes me the keeper of some great Christmas traditions.  Two of my favorites:

I always receive “Christmas Birthday” cards.  Yes, the fine folks at Hallmark and American Greetings make them, though not a lot of them, and so I often receive the same ones year after year.  My mother and my grandmother each have enclosed one with a gift every year, without fail.  I save theirs, and I love my annual perusal of that not-so-little stack of red and green birthday greetings.  Even better, I now have three girls who also delight in that not-so-little stack of “Merry Happies,” and looking through them together over a plate of Chrismas cookies is a lovely way to spend time on a December afternoon.

Next up?  Dessert.  By all means, stop by my house for Christmas dinner and indulge in your holiday favorites: turkey, ham, Christmas trimmings and what not.  But don’t go looking for gingerbread, fruitcake, apple pie, or even a candy cane for dessert.  You’ll come up empty handed.  What you’ll find instead?  Birthday cake!  The homemade kind, with enough red and green icing, sprinkles and sadly, now candles, to out-bedazzle even the Las Vegas strip.  If I’m lucky enough to be with my mom, she’ll do the baking honors (Yes, I know this is slightly unfair, she did after all have to deliver a baby on Christmas Day many years ago.  Delivering baked goods too probably violates some kind of mommy holiday labor law.).  My girls of course take over in the decorating department.  AND I JUST LOVE IT.  Maybe because I appreciate the slightly untraditional twist to the end of an otherwise traditional day.  Maybe because having my family standing around me singing feels just like Christmas should, even if what they are singing is the “Happy Birthday” song.  Maybe because I know that cake, and the fine bunch o’ ladies who make it, are the best gifts I’ll ever have under my tree.