Monday, December 18, 2006

Out, OUT Damned Spots...A Pox Upon My House

Yep, the chicken pox are firmly ensconced in the Compton house. This evening I lifted my son up and saw one on his back as his shirt rose up. Great, just in time for Christmas. The boy doesn't seem overly concerned about them, and has yet to discover they itch. I only saw one. So I went out and bought supplies at the store, benadryl, children's advil, and the makings for a large batch of hot toddies for me and Charles. Snow is falling, and supposed to pile up pretty high here, perhaps as high as 2 and a half feet. We have had a bunch of warm spicy drinks and are feeling pretty festive here. Two hours ago I was saying, "Ugh...snow.." Now I am saying "Ugh! SNOW!!!"

My changes as the drinks keep going...

Boil together in about 5 cups of water the zest of one lemon, about 10 cloves, and four sticks of cinnamon. Boil for about 10 minutes, and let it cool off a little. Juice about four lemons and pour into mugs about 1/4 of lemon juice, add 1/3 of the mug of the infused water, and a couple of table spoons of honey. Then fill the rest of the mug with burbon and have at it.

I am on my third. Typing is becoming a challenge. The snow is getting deeper so I will go make a fourth.

Number four seems to be more burboney and less lemonish. There is a good level of honey. My hands are sticky. I licked the bottle as I put it away (the honey bottle). I think I am going to have to clean the keyboard tomorrow. We have about an inch of snow now, and it is moving in more heavily.

The toddies are very drinky. Number five is pretty strong. I think I forgot the honey, but I licked the burbon bottle this time. It is warm in here now. Very warm and very sleepy in here. I think I will go to bed and write more tomorrow.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Seeing Spots

It just figures.

This morning I wake up hearing the girls talking in their bedroom, just before the alarm is set to go off. I am encouraged, usually getting them out of bed is a lights on, cover yanking affair. Well to be fair to myself, I usually do start off a bit more gently. I go in, turn on the lights, and softly say, "Girls, princesses, time to get up..." hoping that my kind, loving words will be met with smiles and, "Good morning, Mommy!"

Usually I get the closed eye mumble from Amanda, as she stumbles out of bed and towards the bathroom, the covered head to toe silence from Sarah as she pretends that I do not exist, and the threatening low growl from Maddie, indicating that I may be harmed if I dare to yank her from her slumber. Eventually I do get the girls assembled in the living room, dressing and doing hair and the ritual dig through the giant sock basket for the daily pair of "close enoughs".

Today, Sarah was complaining that her head hurt. This is not altogether unusual or unexpected. I looked at her sad face, put my hand on her forehead and said, "Get dressed. Now." Well she started to do the whine, and I ignored her, until she pulled her shirt up and I saw them.


I called her over closer, and there were probably a half dozen smallish pink spots on her back, torso and leg. Dammit.

I looked at her sad face again, and said, "Nevermind, kiddo, let's get some ibuprofen." So she took the medicine and laid on the couch, while I went about the business of getting the other girls going with soothing words and dulcet tones like these...


Gentle only goes so far. At some point you have just got to get their butts on the bus.

So Sarah and her little brother relaxed, watched a movie, and then Sarah busied herself with artwork and practicing her big spelling words and reading, and I watched spots. I am not sure if they are Chickenpox, they have not yet formed blisters. I do know this much, the third grade just got hammered by the virus. I think Amanda got a light case of them, but we didn't know it until they were gone, but she has a couple of scabs that are suspicious. It happened when we all had colds and felt awful, and the kid is pretty itchy as a general rule.

The kids have all been vaccinated against them, but it doesn't always prevent the virus. Thankfully it makes it less severe, so much so that we may not have even noticed Amanda's case of it. I am not confining Sarah from her siblings, I am hoping they all get it if they are going to at one time. But it figures, right before Christmas.

So fun!

Monday, December 04, 2006

The Best Way to Get Christmas Spirit

Little Maddie just informed me that it is very important to eat dessert, especially on Monday nights, to help make Christmas Spirit. She is urging me at this moment toward the kitchen, saying I have to get up and leave the computer and make some cookies or we won't have enough Christmas Spirit. I must admit I have been in a very Christmassy mood of late, and for those of you who aren't there yet I have a few suggestions...

First, you need the proper mood music. My husband has been very helpful in this area, by providing me with this...

There is something really special about Christmas carols being sung by the likes of The Drifters, The Temptations, and Stevie Wonder. What is even better is listening to the kids sing along in the background, especially Amanda trying to reach the low notes of the Temptation's version of "Silent Night". Really funny. We had ourselves the best time a few weeks ago in the Circuit City parking lot, while Charles ran in for something, singing it in our loud voices, and then Stevie Wonder's "Ave Maria," too, with the windows open. Amanda said, "Oh mommy, we are sure spreading Christmas Cheer!" because everyone that passed by the car turned to look and smile.

Next, you have to be watching the Christmas specials.

Last week they aired, "A Charlie Brown Christmas," so "Rudolph the Red Nosed Raindeer," "Frosty the Snowman," and "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" can't be too far behind! Speaking of Charlie Brown another great cd to put you in the holiday mood is this...

The Vince Guaraldi Trio's soundtrack to A Charlie Brown Christmas may seem like a juevenile suggestion, but the music is actually very sophisticated, in fact is pretty romantic. This album is perfect for a quiet evening by the fire with the one you love, drinking a nice bottle of wine and staring at the tree with these...

If you haven't seen these babies yet, they are about the coolest thing ever. They are a lot like 3D movie glasses but they are made for kicking back and looking at your Christmas lights with...and they surround the light with images of angels, or bells, or Santas, or happy messages of holiday cheer. I love these.

If you are still not in the mood, then grab your kids, or your nieces and nephews or grandkids or friend's kids (make sure it is ok with the parents of course!) and head down to the mall with them to see Santa. We did this last week, and got a GREAT photo, which we uploaded to and had Christmas cards printed and sent to us on the cheap, and we got them in four days! Isn't this gorgeous???

Of course, you could always follow Maddie's sage advice and have lots of dessert, especially on Mondays before Christmas!

Friday, December 01, 2006

Two Different Boys

Before the haircut, and a bit drooly...

After the haircut, a changed boy!

Yes he is still my darling, adorable William, but haircuts have a dramatic affect on my son, and it is not just in appearance, though the two pictures clearly show that he looks entirely different with his hair short.

Long haired Willie is a sweet and bubbly child, full of good-natured mischief and giggles.

Short haired Willie is a little shyer, a little more reserved, and more sensitive to slight.

Perhaps William feels more confident with his hair a little longer. Maybe cold ears makes him grouchy.

Right now I am excited about the growing out period!

The Tooth Fairy Returneth

Sarah lost another tooth yesterday. When we saw Santa on Monday we told him that the race was on between him and the Tooth Fairy, but frankly I knew the fat guy didn't stand a chance. Her tooth was swinging like a chimp on a vine.

She is a little bit wealthier today, proving that the Tooth Fairy can brave some seriously cold weather and ice and snow. Sarah is looking forward to some mall shopping this weekend!