The Weekly Ramble

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The weekly ramble: where I blog like it’s 2004. The week’s highlights include too much stuff, bah humbug, and 15 odontoma.

The Weekly Ramble - The weekly ramble: where I blog like it's 2004. The week's highlights include too much stuff, bah humbug, and 15 odontoma.

I ran an errand to Target with the littles this week. They wanted to buy stuff. Months of allowance is burning a hole in their pockets. Despite the fact that NO ONE NEEDS ANYTHING in our house, desire runs high, particularly for Lego and Nerf products, apparently.

Instead of shopping, I gave them each time with my phone to take pictures. They thought it was fun; I got a pictorial wishlist (albeit an out of focus one); and they have the joy of hope and anticipation as the think of maybe receiving some of these things at Christmas.

As I mentioned on Facebook this week, I’m having a hard time getting into Christmas this year. It happens every year at this time, I’m not sure why. I’m working through it and even chatting with the kids about what they really desire for the holiday. Our Christmas traditions revolve around food and play; typically the play being done with new toys.

FishPapa and I discussed it on Monday: how do we shop for presents this year when no one needs more stuff? I personally find it difficult to buy gifts when we have so much. I don’t have this solved. Just something I’m thinking about.

While I have no gifts purchased. Ahem.

The Weekly Ramble - The weekly ramble: where I blog like it's 2004. The week's highlights include too much stuff, bah humbug, and 15 odontoma.

I spent a few hours on Tuesday helping the younger boys sort through their clothing. Apparently, they’d been the victims of generous hand-me-downs from the older two and others outside our home. Since the kids do their own laundry, I don’t really monitor what they have anymore.

I just send someone upstairs when he’s wearing high waters.

But, I did check their room and found overflowing drawers and laundry baskets, so it was time. I purged them both down to a week’s worth of clothing, discarded the stuff that was too small or too stained, and relocated the too-large or too numerous items to an overflow box in the closet. Already we’ve found that one shirt a boy chose is too small. He’ll need to shop the closet.

I also returned items that I had bought at Black Friday sales because clearly clothing is not something my children need! Oy!

The Weekly Ramble - The weekly ramble: where I blog like it's 2004. The week's highlights include too much stuff, bah humbug, and 15 odontoma.

Despite my humbuggedness and the fact that I proposed not even having a tree this year, we did, in fact, go buy one. The kids, particularly the 12 and under set, had a great time in Lowe’s parking lot.

Because we know how to do this tree business right. 😉

I tried to suggest that we buy the cheap 3-footer but no one was going for it. The last of the cheap 5-footers was gone. Sigh. $32 for a tree, it is.

The girls had a blast decorating yesterday and slowly the boys joined in. Anyone else have kids who’ve lost their joie de Christmas tree?

In other news, FishBoy14 had the odontoma removed. Since the insurance didn’t pay, we paid cash. I confess to bribing my child to do without the $95 laughing gas. Yes, really. He still had anesthesia so he felt no pain, but he didn’t do the gas which would have only “relaxed him”. The idea of fifty bucks relaxed him quite well. He’s $50 richer and I’m $45 richer. I call that a win-win.

Afterward, I asked the doc about the “little teeth”. He’s a guy. He didn’t count? FishBoy14 didn’t count. What? They guessed that there were about 15 little teeth! Heck! I would have taken a photo and instagrammed them. Guys….

So that’s our week. We survived. It rained. And we have a Christmas tree.

Meanwhile, here’s what’s been happening on Life as MOM:

I also had the opportunity to share our Saving Up for France story over on Money Saving Mom. While our bank account is a lot smaller today, it feels so good to have accomplished that huge feat this year!

The Weekly Ramble - The weekly ramble: where I blog like it's 2004. The week's highlights include too much stuff, bah humbug, and 15 odontoma.

Pepita Cookie Bars

Here’s what’s been happening on Good Cheap Eats:

The Weekly Ramble - The weekly ramble: where I blog like it's 2004. The week's highlights include too much stuff, bah humbug, and 15 odontoma.

New to Life as MOM? Check out this good stuff from the archives.

Coming next week:

  • Teacher Gifts that Money Can’t Buy
  • Stocking Stuffers for Moms
  • Easy Entertaining
  • How to Make Soap

Be sure to let me know what stories and articles are helpful to you and what you’d like to see more of in the coming weeks. I want to make your “life as MOM” as fun and as easy as possible.

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  1. Kathy in Illinois says:

    Those are the cutest gingerbread girls I’ve ever seen!!!
    God bless, Kathy in Illinois

  2. I always like a good purge in kiddos room to prep for holiday shopping. :). I had a hard time deciding what to get for her this year, and what to suggest to grandparents, because we NEED nothing. I tried to take notes when she mentioned things a bazillion times, but we shall see 🙂

  3. I love the bribe. And I bet he was relaxed with that in his pocket

  4. I have the same feeling about gifts – how can we possibly get more STUFF for Christmas when we have so much already? We are working on purging things around here. One twin is getting a video camera, the other is getting a kindle from us. Their little brother is probably getting a replacement for a hand me down toy that is broken. And little sister is only 8 months old, so she’s not getting much but doesn’t know the difference. We suggested a donation to college funds to the grandparents, but packages have still been arriving in the mail.

  5. i feel the same way about all the stuff. We also have six kids, and none of them need anything. My husband and I talked and we decided to do an activity this year. They will each get a small gift on Christmas, but our big “present” will be the weekend before. We are getting a hotel room for the night – we’ll swim, eat out, and go on a fun walk-through lights display (complete with fire pits and s’mores). We don’t do any of these things often, so we’re looking forward to the fun family time. I think the kids will love it and there is no stuff that has to be cleaned up later. 🙂

  6. I’ve been thinking about this post since last night and even tried to comment twice, but managed to delete both comments before I could post them.

    Have you given any thought to celebrating Advent in the weeks leading up to Christmas vs starting Christmas right away?

    Growing up, my family always had an Advent wreath, but we also whole-heartedly started “Christmas” the Sunday after Thanksgiving when we decorated the tree. Actually, Christmas started with the first Christmas carol on the way home from Thanksgiving dinner. 🙂

    My husband and I have continued these traditions with our young family (daughter, 3, and son, 1 … and newly pregnant!). It’s always been Christmas with a little Advent thrown in.

    Until this year. I suffered some serious stress while decorating the house the Sunday after Thanksgiving. It just didn’t feel “right” to me. So I did something drastic. I just stopped decorating!

    We did trim the tree as a family that evening and then we lit our Advent wreath. We’re using this season as a chance to slowly prepare our hearts for Christmas. This includes nightly family prayers around the Advent wreath. We’ve left the Nativity scene empty except the animals, eagerly waiting in anticipation for Mary and Joseph’s arrival on Christmas Eve, Santa laying Jesus in His manger Christmas morning, then arrivals by the shepherds and angels, and, finally, on the Epiphany, the three kings. We’ve intentionally chosen Christmas cards with Jesus-centered themes. We’re breaking out the decorations slowly and it’s fun to see the festivities unfold.

    Advent is a joyfully penitential season meant for us to “clean house” (our souls) before the big party. Christmas lasts for 12 days, after all! That’s quite a party!!

    Just some thoughts on the topic. You (and your search for joy) are in my prayers! 🙂 I seriously love your blog, btw.

    In Peace and Joy!

    • Kristin, thank you so much for taking the time for such a well-thought response. I don’t know that I totally understood your post until I read this yesterday with the kids:
      I think we as a culture don’t really know the difference between Advent and Christmas. They seem so lumped together.

      Before reading that bit from Professor Carol, I don’t think I really thought about them being different. despite the fact that I do some kind of Advent observance with the kids or on my own each year. Thanks for your kind words, encouragement, and prayers. I appreciate it!

  7. I’ve always struggled with Christmas as an adult, and a parent. For many reason it’s painful, and I worry I may have scared my kids for life. I can only hope they understand they were well loved and generously cared for when they have families of their own, and that’s nothing that can be bought at the Mega Mart.

    I’ve taken to reminding them that “Retail Doesn’t Rule Me” when they get a case of the “wants” just because they’ve seen something flashy on TV. Advertising is designed for one purpose: to seperate you from your money. I can only hope I’ve raised better Consumers, and many better people. 😉

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