I think my kids are FINALLY starting to pay off. I mean for a while they were just take, take, take. So greedy. You have these children and suddenly there are these little people on the planet who depend on you 27/7. Plus, and this is the real doozy, you love them more than you love yourself. Who needs that?! All this brings you is anxiety, worry, stress, fatigue and a barge load of responsibilities. But now it’s payday. Turns out, there might be a little something in it for me.
First of all, my children have taught me how to be an impulse buyer. Pre-kiddos, it took me a gazillion years to buy something. Once at the Gap, I tried on two down black coats (size small and size medium) for about 55 minutes. First, the small. Fits nicely, very flattering, but could I wear a sweater under it? Not sure. Then, the medium. Much roomier, less tight in the back, but a little large in the shoulders. Back to the small. Over and over and over again. My boyfriend at the time was sitting lifeless, having surrendered to boredom in the corner, just nodding his head in agreement at anything I uttered. I finally bought the medium. I don’t even have the coat anymore and I still wish I had purchased the small. Seriously. That jacket was alway too big.
Those days of deep consideration and pondering are so over. Yesterday, when picking out a Christmas tree, I looked at one tree. ONE. The guy cut the twine off, showed it to me and I said, “I’ll take it.” With two hungry kids (make that 3, I was starving), winds smacking me in the face and nap time looming, there was no time to hesitate. Deliver that bad boy. For years, my husband pleaded with me to make decisions (and get ready in the morning) more quickly. But it’s my girls who’ve finally succeeded in transforming me.
My children have really started paying off in the holiday department too. Growing up, holidays could be a bit unpredictable and lonely at times. So I sort of dreaded from Thanksgiving until the New Year. As an adult, I was completely intimidated by the idea of creating my own holiday traditions because this time of year is so wrapped up in food, those sweet, intoxicating smells from the kitchen. And I just don’t cook. How can I have Christmas eve at my home if I can’t roast a turkey? Or more accurately, if I don’t want to roast, puree or dice anything.
But now I’m starting to get it. I don’t have to be perky Rachael Ray to create a tradition. Last week, Rick, I and the girls lit the menorah candles for 8 straight days and celebrated Hanukkah. We even made latkes (potato pancakes). They were from a mix but still…those cakes were damn tasty. And today, 3 year-old Dylan and I put lights on the Christmas tree. She helped me fill the tree stand with water and layer the branches with ornaments. It didn’t feel unpredictable or lonely. It feels like the creation of my own holiday traditions. So my kids may not have part-time jobs (when can they start that by the way because preschool is steep?) but they are contributing in other ways. Who knew these little ladies could teach me so much?
mama bird notes
Contributing mama Daphne Biener could also take a lesson from one of her girls. Click on “contributing mamas” to read more.
And in “drooling over this”, a gift idea for a fellow yummy mummy.