The Princess has always had hand-me-down mis-matched furniture in her room, so recently we decided to get her some pieces of her own. She wants a canopy bed, which is kind of hard to find if you are not looking for super-frilly, but I did find one, and some matching pieces at PBTeen. The stuff was a little pricey, but I figured it would last her until she goes to college, so I was willing to pay for the style and quality…until I got to the shipping. For three pieces of furniture and a mattress (without a box spring) it was almost $500 to have it delivered. And I’m sorry, but that’s just crazy talk. When we moved here two years ago, I had 9 rooms full of furniture, including a piano, plus a basement full of kids’ toys moved for a little over $1500. Nine rooms! So, I stopped myself, after asking if they could combine the shipping and being denied, from making a purchase.
From there, I went looking for alternatives, and was shocked to find some CRAZY outrageous kids’ beds that I thought I would share.
First of all, if I had the means, and it was available anywhere, this is the one I would buy for sure.
But three grand is nothing compared to some of these:
But if princesses aren’t your thing, how about a bed for the little prince?
Needless to say, I am continuing my search for the perfect bed for our Princess. Let me know if you found anything here for your kids…or self.
I put up this feeder over the winter, and just recently caught a few birds in photos. I know the second one is a tufted titmouse, but I’m not sure about the first one. It looks like some kind of woodpecker. It had a hard time finding purchase on the feeder, hence the angle.
One of the problems I have every year with these prompts is that it takes me a day or two to think of an answer. That being said, I’m sure you will look at a few of these and think, That took her time to come up with? Jeez. Click!
So, without further adieu…
December 3 - If you could meet someone new in 2013, who would it be? Or would you rather spend more time with someone you already know?
No, I do a pretty good job of socializing as it is. I’m kind of making a career of it. Who would I like to meet in 2013? Anyone but my maker.
December 4 - What was the wisest decision you made this year?
They ask this one every year, and if I can think of anything, it’s stupid material stuff. I got a minivan that has made it easier to load the kids into the car and has cut down the squabble factor. I bought a new toaster oven that seems to do the trick. I started Practice What You Pinterest, but I can’t say that has turned out to be wise. Decisions? I didn’t really make any major ones this year, and I make too many little ones every day to single any out.
Oh, wait! I decided to avoid MSG. It’s made a world of difference with my migraines. That counts as wise, right?
December 5 - Interview 3 people about their favorite moments of the year. Share what you heard.
This was a fun one, and I actually got several good answers:
Michelle H. said that her best moment was her sister’s wedding and seeing her own daughters all dressed up for the event. She also enjoyed a moment the day before the wedding when she threatened to bitch-slap her sister.
Nadia had two as well. First was the day (May 23, 2012) when she had lost enough weight to fit back into her wedding gown. (Way to go, Nadia! I’ve kissed my gown goodnight until my daughter can wear it.) And October 31st, when she had officially lost 100 pounds.
Robin said the day after Election Day was the best moment for her. (Yes, many of us felt we could breathe easier that day…)
Meredeth gave some silly story about her daughter becoming potty trained, until she remembered that she had met George Clooney. Not to belittle A’s milestone, but duh, M. I would deal with diapers for a decade to have that guy press his shoulder into mine like that.
Michelle M. enjoyed seeing her daughter graduate high school to go study veterinary medicine.
Several friends said that their moment was when Notre Dame beat USC to go to the National Championship.
Three friends had babies this year, so those moments trumped all the others for them.
Kelly’s daughter underwent surgery that changed her life for the better.
Bill got pulled onstage during a concert to sing and dance with the band.
Kevin had a great one too. He said his moment was seeing his wife present their son with his high school diploma on a stage, where they shared an affectionate whisper. It was a message. “Tell Dad,” the graduate said, “the Phillies are tied in the tenth.”
For me, there were a million little moments. Edison’s excitement waiting in the audience at Asbury Lanes for the Potter Puppet Pals to begin; watching Craig, one of my fellow wizards “bonding” with two “gnomes” made out of potatoes, while sitting on a bench looking serenely at the lake; laughing with Manfrengensen until tears came out of our eyes; asking Clooney whether I tell him I love him enough and his response, “Uh, duh”; laughs with my lady friends who lunch/and/or/breakfast at Panera; hearing my son referred to as “a ringer” during a Quidditch match; meeting our new niece and our new nephew; almost passing out while driving Manfrengensen to the hospital after his bike accident; holding my daughter’s hand; watching her try on the shoes I wore to my wedding; The Book of Mormon. I’m surrounded by magic every single day.
December 6 - How do you want get involved in your community this year?
I did a lot this year to get involved in my community. I still cook once a month for a local soup kitchen, and I started teaching Sunday school. I will continue to do those things in the coming year, and I will look for other opportunities, chiefly ones that involve aiding the poor in our area.
So there, all caught up…now let me get to the myriad other things I have on the docket today.
Today’s prompt from ThinkIt:
Unplug for an hour, a half day, or a whole day. Choose a time that feels a little uncomfortable. How did you feel? What did you do? Reflect on your experience. How much did you unplug this year? How does this experience make you feel about unplugging in the coming year?
I did spend an hour unplugged today at church, which is nothing new, and not really any kind of sacrifice, but it does put me in touch with my thoughts. I do tend to feel the absence these days, when not connected to those unseen but so-compelling forces that draw us to whatever place this is. We used to live our lives in a moment. Now we kind of live it in a binary state.
The Monsignor does his usual thing. I am glad all that singing of the Our Father is over. Never could get into that. Not to mention that the Monsignor sings like an alley cat in heat. Plus it’s nice to see the purple and pink of the Advent season. I love the holidays.
Two rows up I see the lady who brings her two young sons, one of whom always insists on being held while she’s standing. The kid has to be at least six or seven years old. How does she hold him up like that? She must work out. I wonder what she benches. I should try to bench something. Who am I kidding? I lift the lightest things I can find when I go to the gym. And that phrase right there is laughable. When. I need to start doing that…
So here I am, sitting in a Catholic church feeling guilt. Shocker.
Three rows up, there are those two ladies…are they sisters? Are they twins? They have the same sort of fashion sense, and totally the same hair style, like the one Lucille Bluth has in Arrested Development. I wonder what they talk about.
The Monsignor steps up to the plate for the Gospel. I swear, I don’t know anyone else in the world who consistently makes the word “you” a two-syllable one. After the Gospel, he reads his homily, which is all about…I really need to be sure to clip Clooney’s fingernails today. And the Princess really needs to wear leggings under her dresses if she’s going to sit like that. I wonder who cleans this place, and how often. The lady behind me just coughed into what sounded like her hand. I’m going to have to shake that hand in a few minutes, and then, would it be rude to use hand sanitizer before I go to get Communion?
The lady at the end of our pew is the lady with the terrible RA in her hands. I wonder how much pain she is in. How does she deal with that?When I shake her hand to wish her peace, her hands, despite being covered by wrinkled papery skin, are as soft as kid gloves.
I wonder what people think when they shake my hand. Can they tell how many times a day I wash my hands? Do I have the tell-tale sandpapery fingertips of someone who uses her hands all day in the kitchen?
I have not unplugged much this year. In fact, if anything, electronics have coiled their sparking tentacles even more tightly around my brain. I used to think that I didn’t need all of this, and I wonder at what point the changover in thinking occurred. Knowing that makes me think I should try to step away a bit more in 2013, but is that just another layer of guilt to lay on?
It’s that time of year again, and this year, I really hope to keep up with ThinkIt’s Year-End Blog Wrap-Up. The prompt for December 1st is the Year in Pictures. I had a hard time reducing it to one moment, so I collected these, in no particular order:
I’m surely leaving out many memories of the year, but hopefully they will come back to me as we continue this process over the next few weeks.
The Princess, watching Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone asks me, “Mommy, how old is Dumbledore in this one? Thirty-something?”
A couple of weeks ago, we were on vacation at the Jersey shore, and we decided to go play some tennis. I don’t know why, but the latches for the gates to the courts were up really high, like almost six feet from the ground. The latch was heavy too. We had the kids with us, and they were running between our courts and the adjacent playground with a frequency that kind of messed with my game, but in the end it didn’t matter, Manfrengensen beat me in his usual fashion, 6-0, 6-1.
The latch was so high that The Princess couldn’t reach it at all, and Clooney even had a hard time, stretching to capacity to lift the thing, which must have weighed at least five pounds. When we had finished our match, we gathered up all of our things and left the court. Manfrengensen’s hands were full, and I didn’t realize that he was walking so close behind me, but when I let go of the latch, it came down right on his head. And his world exploded in stars.
Of course I felt awful, even more so as I watched the egg-sized welt rise on his pate. It looked angrier than he did. He takes pain pretty well, though, and he soldiered on through the day, complaining minimally about his cranium as the sun made its pass over our heads.
After dinner, we walked for ice cream, and then just as we were heading back, he mentioned that he felt light headed, so I said, “Oh no, maybe we shouldn’t let you go to sleep,” figuring that, though the possibility at that point was remote, if he had a concussion, he shouldn’t be allowed to go to sleep.
“What are you saying that for??” he asked. He reasoned that he was about to go to bed, and by mentioning the possibility, now he was freaked out and wouldn’t be able to sleep.
So, I tried to allay his fears. He’d been okay all day. In all likelihood he didn’t have a concussion, so it was probably safe to go to sleep. But then, as he got in bed, he pulled out the book he was reading, The Family Fang, by Kevin Wilson, and read, as incredibly as this sounds, about a character who gets shot in the face with a potato gun. Of course, he ends up with a concussion, and his friends and family express concerns that he will never wake up if he goes to sleep.
What are the chances of that kind of coincidence??
So, Manfrengensen kept catching himself nodding off, fighting it for as long as he could. He said that he had never been so relieved to wake up at 2 a.m. because he realized that he hadn’t slipped into a coma.
So, yesterday, we were visiting my parents at the shore, and my sister was down from New England to visit. She had a little accident on Friday night, twisted her ankle and had to go to the hospital. Kind of a bummer, since we only see her a few times a year, and here she was going to be holed up at the house while we enjoyed a day on the beach.
Because I had worked at my kids’ camp last week, I was exhausted, and looked forward to sleeping in on Saturday morning. Manfrengensen usually gets up early and goes for a run or a bike ride, picks up some breakfast, and then takes care of the kids until I wake up. He’s one in a million, really.
Yesterday, I felt his hand on my arm, rousing me from sleep. I figured, as I came up to consciousness, that I had REALLY slept in, that he was coming to tell me it was like eleven o’clock or something. “Egghead,” he said gently, and then repeated my name. I opened my eyes, and his face was an arm’s length from mine. He was holding his chin.
“I have to go to the hospital,” he said calmly. “I need stitches.” He then went on to explain that he had tumbled over the handlebars of his bike, and needed stitches in his chin.
Of course, I jumped out of bed, insisting on driving him. “I can drive myself,” he said, but I wouldn’t hear of it. I brushed my teeth, threw on some clothes, got him an ice pack and we got to the car. It was then that I saw the other side of his face, which was swollen and angry-looking. It looked like he may have broken the orbital bone near his eye. His hands were all banged up, as were his knees.
He talked while I drove, explaining how he had been riding two towns over from ours, and had been forced onto the shoulder by a passing car, but then his tires hit an uneven part of the pavement where there was a lip and gravel, and he lost control of the bike. He flipped over, landing on his left side. Thankfully, he was wearing a helmet, or I would have been awakened not by his gentle touch but by the call of the hospital.
As he spoke, I could feel my breath leaving me. My skin felt like it was on pins and needles. My vision began to go dark, so I pulled the car over. He got out, came around to the driver’s side and helped me into the passenger seat more kindly than I deserved, before I all but blacked out. He then drove himself to the Emergency Room with one hand on the wheel and the other with the ice pack against his face. Needless to say, I’m not too great in a crisis situation.
By the time we got to the hospital, I had pulled myself together. He got out at the ER, and I went to park the car. When I found him, ten minutes later, he was sitting in the waiting room, and having bled through his paper towel, was just sitting there with blood dripping from his chin like he had a crimson beard.
We got him all checked out, x-rays, CAT scan, five stitches, and thank God, he’s fine. Today his eye is black, but there were no fractures. We got a glimpse of how fragile life can be yesterday. Just feeling incredibly lucky today that we came out on the better side of what could have been.
Recently, my oldest child, Edison has discovered the Internet meme. I have two favorites, the “Hey Girl” Ryan Gosling meme…
and “The Most Interesting Man in the World”.
I showed them to Edison, but he didn’t really get them, so we went to Youtube to look at the Dos Equis commercials and help him get the jokes. Yes, funny, he nodded.
Last night at dinner, I put some waffle fries on the side, and Clooney, who usually eschews potatoes of any kind, exhibited a rare excitement, claiming that waffle fries were his favorite.
Manfrengensen and I were, of course, suprised by his reaction, and then Edison, who is usally quite serious, said dryly, “I don’t always eat fries, but when I do, they’re the waffle cut.” I don’t know, just tickled me for some reason.
A family of robins has made a home right outside our dining room in an arborvitae tree. Today while I was taking photos, the father came and fed the chicks. There are four total, but you can only see three from this angle.