Monday, December 26, 2011

Nights 5 & 6


Chanukah 2011 seems to have been the year of games. Erin has always been interested in having games but not in playing them. Or should I say, playing them correctly? This year we decided that rather than have a ton of crafty gifts, it was time to load her up on games. And, of course, to play them correctly.

In fact, it started out with her receiving a board game at her friends' Ethan &Katie Starr's annual Chanukah party! There is a new game out called HeadBandz which she got in the grab bag gift exchange. She really wanted it, but just how many games can one girl have!? (Apparently a lot, if you look at my friend Sandra's daughters' games!)

Erin had lost parts to her Monopoly game. That needed to be replaced. Whenever we play Scrabble, the cats walk all over the board moving tiles everywhere. Sandra took a picture of her daughter playing Scrabble where the tiles were locked into place. Oh yea! I replaced our set & got the tile locking set.

Spinagogue isn't going to work out quite the way I thought it would. She's more interested in the stop watch & timing everything than she is in spinning the dreidels tournament style. Her godsister sent her an old game that has been changed up. I loved Clue as a kid! Of course I had what is now known as Clue Classic. Erin was thrilled to receive Clue Harry Potter! And, the other gift from Kerri? Went over BIG also. Wii Harry Potter! Both Erin & Kerri are HUGE Potter fans. (Can't imagine where they got that from!)

One of the things I've really wanted is a Pandora bracelet. I found one that I liked that is pink leather. I can't wait to put my beads on it. David LOVES his new model & the movies that he received. That man can watch sci-fi from the beginning of the day till the end of time. In fact, he's already watched both movies & is trying to figure out how to get me to watch them too. Thank you so much Vivian, Corey & Kerri!!!

Last night, the 6th night, Erin got another game she's been wanting.

Mancala isn't played exactly the way she has been playing it, but even with the correct rules it's fun!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

The 4th Night? A Big Hit

For months before Chanukah we kept asking Erin what she wanted for her presents.  It just makes sense to ask for a list of things.  Erin knows that she is giving us a list & she may or may not get some or all of what's on the list.  In fact we make a point of reminding her that she can ask for anything but that Chanukah is only 8 nights.  She gets her present(s) from both sets of grandparents on one night.  There is also a night that is dedicated to presents from her godsister Kerri & Kerri's parents.  David & I take care of the other nights.

This year Erin has been asking for a Wii.  We weren't really sure we could swing it so we told her that she shouldn't count on getting one.  Since we usually splurge on one big gift, I convinced David that this would work.  He is concerned about Erin (or perhaps me?) accidentally throwing the Wii controller into our tv.  I told him we could put a Wii in our front bedroom which doubles as an office, but that means buying a new tv, or that we could enforce a rule that the wristlet attached to the controller always be worn if we put it into our family room.

I put the huge box out right before lighting candles.  Erin just wanted to open her big present even though she had no clue what was inside.  I think the Wii went over really well.

This is one happy girl which makes me one happy mama.

Friday, December 23, 2011

Night 3

Last night we celebrated the 3rd night of Chanukah. Erin got a gift that is new to the market. Spinagogue is tournament dreidel playing. At first she was confused, but my smart girl figured it out. In the end, I think she's more charmed by the stopwatch that came with the game!

Last night also brough a huge surprise for me also.  Last year David surprised me with the entire Buffy the Vampire Slayer series.  This year, he gave me the entire Angel series! I have really been wanting that but didn't say anything.

He also gave me some beads for a new bracelet that I'll be getting tomorrow night. Shhh!! Don't tell anyone I know about that!


Thursday, December 22, 2011

Grandparents' Night

The 2nd night of Chanukah was thanks to Erin's grandparents.  Bubbie & Zaydie (my father & stepmother) and Grandma & Grandpa (David's parents) sent her the Razor Spark scooter she's been begging to get.  Her last scooter got ruined, & she had really been asking for this one for a long time.  Erin had been hinting at this particular scooter almost daily for the last few months.

David surprised me with another gift also.  I really enjoy scrapbooking even though I haven't done more than 3 or 4 pages since school started.  A few months ago, one of the magazines I get made mention of a new book that has a gazillion suggestions for journaling & card making.  Not only did I get the book, but it's autographed by the author!!

All of this aside, my favorite part of the evening was allowing Erin to light the candles on her own.  She has been asking to help me for days, & I thought it would be fine.  When it came time to actually light them, Erin reminded me that I had said she could help me.  At the very last minute, I decided to let her light them on her own.  I've been lighting the candles since I was her age.  Now it's her turn.

ARGH!!! Blogger isn't letting me upload pictures!!!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The True Gift of Chanukah

The first night of Chanukah was a true gift to me!

The aroma of brisket was all around us.  I was practically drooling it smelled so good in the house! Erin was trying to figure out how to get some before her daddy woke up.  Normally, I'll take a bit to taste - just to see how it is, but this is one recipe that has never failed me.  I held off.

David woke up & wasn't feeling well.  At all.  But, man was he determined.  His job on Chanukah has always been to make the latkes.  I mean. let's face it, his latkes are yummy!  I told him the latkes could wait, but there was no way he was letting that happen after last year when we had to go without any due to his surgery.

Brisket was served.  Latkes were served.  Erin decided that she doesn't like the brisket.  Of course, she still isn't a big red meat eater so I wasn't upset.  David & I enjoyed it all while she picked at a few latkes.

Erin chose this year's chanukiah (menorah) - the one we got from his aunt when she passed away.  The candles were lit, & the presents came out.  I gave David the complete "The Godfather" series on blu ray along with a book on Photoshop for Astronomy.  He gave me the mp3 player I'd been wanting.  Then we gave Erin her gifts.  She absolutely loved them! David picked out a model for her while I picked out a new necklace - a leather "chain" with a blue guitar pick that has a Jewish star on it.  The iTunes gift card went over well also.

And then the real gift happened.

Erin always wants to buy things for us.  She loves to give gifts.  This year David & I sat her down & told her that the best gift she could ever give to us was something that she made.  She had a holiday bazaar at school at the time so we wanted her to understand that those things would really hold no value.  I told her that when my own mother passed away & I had to go through her belongings, I found many of the cards I had given to her over the years, but only the ones I had made.  In fact, I still have the necklace my brother Seth made for her when he was in, I think, 2nd grade.

Well, Erin came out of her room with a bunch of little gift wrapped items.  Oy! I had to wonder what was in all of those things held together with way too much wrapping paper & about 4 rolls of tape.  (She needs lessons on being frugal with wrapping paper & tape for sure!)  David & I opened each little package.  It seems that Erin really heard us.  She painted some ceramic trains that were in her craft area & wrote cards & letters to us.

Of all the things that were given last night, I know I will forever treasure the little note she typed on the computer. . .

Saturday, December 17, 2011

What Life Is All About These Days

School started at the end of August, & my life has been filled with learning all kinds of things.  I'm in school for medical coding & billing.  Who knew I'd need to know all about these awful diseases?  Not me.  But thanks to a wonderful teacher who knows how to push all of my buttons (& not necessarily in the right way), I'm learning & enjoying it all. I've had to do reports on sorts of diseases.  Some I know about personally.  Some I've wanted to learn about because of the children & adults in my life who inspire me.


 Hashimoto's Thyroiditis


Reactive Attachment Disorder



SO.  Now you know what I've been up to these last few months.  I graduate this coming June.  I don't know who is looking forward to my graduation more.  David has had to put up with my stubbornness & tantrums when I'm scared.  Erin has really hated not having me spend enough time with her.  Me?  I can't wait.  For a new career that will bring a paycheck.  For time with my husband so we can go back to being us.  For my daughter who really misses time with me as much as I miss time with her.