Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Oder Maeeey Cafine

A few months ago, my sister Annie came down with my Mom for a visit. While she was here, Maggie kept accidentally calling her Mary Catherine. Well, really, she kept calling her "Maeeey Cafine."

This was funny, mostly because it made Annie so mad. The competition for most-beloved auntie is fierce around here.

But honestly, you can understand Maggie's mistake. They look similar. They sound VERY similar. They both are SO fun and SO silly and pick her up WHENEVER she asks and sneak her treats ALL the time.

It's very confusing to have two people spoiling you so completely.

So, like a dutiful Auntie, Annie practiced her name with Maggie all weekend and steadfastly refused to answer to 'Maeeey Cafine' and by the end of the visit, Maggie had pretty much sorted out which Auntie was which.

Or so we thought.

A couple weeks after Annie's visit we were writing down things we were thankful for and putting them on our Thankful tree (this was back in November) and Maggie volunteered "Taful fo Maeeey Cafine!"

"Oh, that's good Maggie!" I said, "But, look, we already have Aunt Mary Catherine! See? There she is on that leaf right there."

"No! Maeeey Cafine!"

"I know, Mary Catherine. We already wrote her down."

"Noooo!!! ODER Maeeey Cafine!"

"Other Mary Catherine?? What is other... WAIT, DO YOU MEAN AUNTIE ANNIE??"

"Yah!!!! Auueee Anneee!"

Sorry, Auntie Annie. She loves you to bits, and will probably get all the names straight very soon.

But I, for one, am calling you "Oter Maeeey Cafine" from now on. (Or, at least until you come for another visit. A lllloooooonnnnngggggg visit. :) What are you Spring Break plans?)

Friday, December 13, 2013

Very, Very High Standards

I'm not anti-Pinterest, I'm just Pinterest-disabled.

But every once in a while, I come across a Pinterest idea that meets all of my exacting requirements for a craft.

A KID craft, that is. I don't do crafts by myself. I take naps by myself.

The exacting requirements are as follows:
  1. Requires no errands. Meaning, I have all the supplies in the house. And can find them.
  2. Costs zero dollars. Not $5. Not $1. Zeroooooo.
  3. Can be completed in 10-15 minutes or less, thereby matching the attention span of my children.
  4. Requires no prep. Meaning, I don't have to do ANYTHING ahead of time. No preparing of materials, no mixing, no smacking my kids away from the table while I JUST TRY TO GET YOUR STUPID CRAFT READY FOR YOU, GEEZ.
  5. Requires absolutely no skill, talent, or crafty-type knowledge. Because I have none. None. (Refer back to my thoughts on the zeroooooo.)
Enter, the winning Pinterest craft of the season:

The Bedroom Door Snowman

He met all of my requirements. 

I love him.

Henry loves him. Maggie loves him.

10 points for Pinterest.

The End.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The Birthday Girl

I'm here to report that Margaret's second birthday was an absolutely smashing success. 

She's been talking about her birthday for WEEKS, and whenever anyone mentioned it to her, she would say the exact same thing: "my birtday, miss mous cake." Sometimes, if pressed, she'd also add "Muzzie make fo me."

If you don't speak 2 year old, that's translated "My birthday, Minnie Mouse cake." and "Mumsie make it for me."

The kid loves Minnie Mouse (we're not sure why/how it started) and obviously, she's smart enough to know that her Mama isn't going to make her anything more impressive than a funfetti cupcake and that grandmothers must be relied upon for these more specialty items.

If we asked her what kind of present she wanted for her birthday, she'd first repeat "miss mous cake" and then when asked AGAIN she'd say "baby, paci, bottle, water. I take out box."

We saw a baby doll at Target a few weeks ago that came with it's VERY OWN paci, sippy cup, and bottle. I mean, WOW. WOW, YOU GUYS, JUST WOW. I let her hold it for a minute, but obviously, I wouldn't let her open the box. 

Clearly it really stuck. She wants the baby, she wants the trimmings, SHE WANTS TO TAKE IT OUT OF THE DANG BOX.

Also, in our traditional parenting genius, David & I have been hyping Maggie up for weeks with the idea of a Very Special Wonderful Awesome Big Girl Bed For Your Birthday, You Are So Big And Special And You Love Big Girl Beds. She totally bought it, and has been talking about birthday-big-girl-bed, like she thought of the idea herself. 

She's also been saying that she will be three on her birthday, but I finally convinced her that she was ONE right now and she'd be turning TWO. It's hard trying to keep up with an older sibling. No matter how many birthdays you have, you just cant catch up.

I tell you all of these things because one, they are adorable and two, every one of her dreams came true on her birthday weekend.

Her birthday was on Friday, and she woke up to find her very own big girl bed in the living room!!! Complete with a stuffed Minnie, to act as 'stay-in-bed-bribery.'

She loved it.

Henry lovingly helped her acclimate.

Sort of.

 Then, in Williamson family tradition, Maggie got to choose all her favorites for her meals that day, a breakfast of bagels with extra cream cheese,

and spaghetti for dinner.

Dear Lord, that girl loves red sauce.

Her party was on Sunday, and it was a blast. Mumsie, of course, came through with a FAAABULOUS Minnie Mouse cake.

and, as if that wasn't enough, Minnie Mouse themed cupcakes as well.

To say Maggie was thrilled would be an understatement. She LUUUUUURVED it.

(Also, if you ever want to see a toddler version of Sophie's Choice, ask them to choose between a piece of cake and a cupcake. They will die. You will laugh.)

Now, before I go into any more party details, let me share a few personal thoughts:

The Williamson Family is not good at a lot of things. We are all a little bit bossy some of the time and we are late all of the time. Sometimes we are selfish, we do not clean the house often enough or well enough, and sometimes we legitimately run all-the-way-out of clean clothes.  We try to follow a budget, but it is not our gift. We try to be kind to each other, but sometimes that is also not our gift. But I have decided there is one thing that we are really good at.

We're really good at chaos. We're good with noise and crowds and lots of food and crumbs and discarded cups and kids everywhere and people everywhere and wrapping paper and messes and running and wrestling and everyone talking all at once. Chaos might be our spiritual gift. (Is that in the bible? Can someone check for me?)

I say that because our house is small, our family is big, we've been blessed with lots of friends, and Maggie's party was absolutely chaotic. And honestly, I loved every minute of it. And, I think she did too.

All the pictures are dark and most are blurry and a lot of them are out of focus, because it was late afternoon, and rainy/icy/dark outside, and because kids move really, really fast. But I think it's okay because even though the pictures aren't the most beautiful, they certainly capture the spirit of things, and the spirit of things was pretty lovely.


Sweet Maggie,

Happy Birthday, baby girl! Your second birthday was a blast, and as much as I enjoyed every mintute of it, I'm absolutely positive that you enjoyed it more. The look on your face ALONE, when we were all singing Happy Birthday to you, made two years worth of parenting absolutely, unquestionably worth it.

It was so fun to see you feeling so special and celebrated, to see the wonder on your face when you saw Mumsie's cake, to see how confused you were by the presents that JUST KEPT COMING, and to see how excited you were every time someone else walked through the door.

Your Dad and I love you so much, and it was great to get to celebrate you with people who ALSO love you so much.

I was reading an article recently and came across this quote by L.R. Knost; "It is not our job to toughen our children up to face a cruel and heartless world, It's our job to raise children who will make the world a little less cruel and heartless."

While I don't always love (or even agree with) everything Knost has to say about parenting, I really loved that quote. And although we HOPE that we're raising our kids that way, you Miss Maggie, might not even need our help in that department.

Underneath your stubbornness and dogged perseverance and near-constant testing of boundaries and authority, you are already a deeply compassionate and tender girl. You have never met an animal or baby that you didn't love with your whole hearty-heart-heart. No one is permitted to cry in your presence without receiving your hugs, kisses, and whatever other ministrations you deem necessary. You feel the need to check on anyone who's been put in time out. And although you seem to be fine with pestering and torturing your brother to the point of death, as soon as you realize he's really upset, you're quick to return toys, give hugs, and say sorry.

You might be a spitfire, but somehow you've managed to be a sweet, cuddly, loving spitfire. We think it's kind of awesome.

Spending the past two years with you in our family has been an absolute delight. We are so thankful for you, for every little bit of you; for your health, your sense of humor, your compassion, your sweet kisses, your (often hilarious) tantrums, your funny phrases & ideas, your freely given "yuv yous," and for every single moment of every single day that we get to spend with you. We love you to the tops of the trees and to the bottom of the oceans and everywhere inbetween. And, just like I remind you every night; Mama loves you so, so much, and Jesus loves you even more than that.

So don't you forget it.

Happy birthday, pumpkinbutt! You're the best.