Momsie’s Annual Top-Ten Thankfuls!

Here’s what you have been waiting for, all year!!!!! I know you have. Me too.

Gratitude is the best reset button EVER. I belong to a facebook group where we post, every day, five gratitudes, and did you know? Every time I do it, I feel better. Even on the no good, very bad, worstest days ever. Gratitude is a multi-vitamin for the soul, I tell you.

So, here goes. My annual Thanksgiving Day Top Ten Thankfuls:

(In no particular order, because I’m doing this right after I had some coffee and a Clariton and I am totally squirreled out right now):

  1. Squirrel One and Squirrel Two. Might as well keep it in the rodent family right now. img_57831
  2. Also, of course, head squirrel, the hubster:

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4. Lemon Bars. I know. Kinda random. But really? Everything has been all pumpkin spice all over the place and I’m so over it. Let’s start a new thing – Lemon Bar Season! It could happen.

5.  That The Force Awakens did not rely on bad CGI and there was no Jar Jar in it.

6. My mom’s oyster dressing. I know that I mentioned this before, but it bears repeating.

7. That Black Friday will be over soon.

8. This guy:IMG_5652He has hopes that one day he will be able to FIT in that box. But, as he keeps getting fatter, and the box stays the same, I admire his optimism.

9: This:

 

10: Also, God is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow.  And he is good.

Amen?

Amen.

 

Bonus #11:

Sober Momsie. I just am who I am supposed to be when I don’t have alcohol in me. I operate better.

I know, some would say, “Really?” But, if you knew me before you would not argue, believe me.

 

Happy Thanksgiving.

 

 

I Went Away and Came Back Again.

Yep. I did. A few weeks ago I went away to Jacksonville, Florida.

And then? I came back. But… just for about twenty minutes or so, on the fabulous deck overlooking the pool with my coffee and bible? I had a teensy little bad thought (I know – one is not supposed to have bad thought when the bible is around, because bible = goodness, but, well, it’s me).

Here was the thought:

HOLY CRACKAMOLE I AM NEVER LEAVING THIS BALCONY.

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Ok, so let’s just kill the suspense right here. I did, in fact, leave the balcony.

I left it to put on some really strappy, high heeled shoes that are ridiculous, and then tromped down to my presentation here:

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I don’t really know what I’m doing in that photograph. But, as already mentioned, I don’t always sit well on video, so whatever.

Here’s another one. I like to call this:

Contemplative Momsie. Or Scared. Not Really Sure.

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This was my weekend at the Intervention Project for Nurses and it was amazing. Such an honor. Such an awesome event. Such a great balcony. The only unpleasant thing about the entire trip was those shoes.

Honestly, why do we do heels? Remind me again? I understand they make us look lean and lithe and thus, you know, ready to leap tall buildings and all that but really? I so would rather do so in flip flops.

Anyhow! I just wanted to tell you that I DID come back. And I am now firmly wedged in full-on summer with two boys that are playing baseball four nights out of the week. We have dinners that have sunflower seeds as the main dish. Sometimes, if they’re lucky, I throw a cheese stick at them as we head to the car. I add the goldfish that are colored with vegetable dyes because healthy.

Oh, and also this happened:

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Kansas Notable Books press release

Life is amazing and wonderful. Even when it’s not it is still pretty special. I am so grateful. I am SO grateful!!!!!!

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Post-game. Waiting for ice cream, because it helps battle the over 100 degree heat. I am even more grateful for Mr. Grimy, don’t you know.

Yes, you know. All moms know. We might have cool stuff handed to us, but really? If it came down to it, we’d take the sweaty kid with the dripping ice cream cone over all of it. Every day.

Every. Day.

 

 

 

Life Sentence.

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Something lately has been really really really bugging me.

No. It’s not the coffee cup thing. Don’t leave the post.

Here is my issue: Lately I had a review of The Book (I wrote a book. Did you know?) in a local paper. The review was really nice and well written and we had a great interview prior. It was, all in all, great press and great information about the book.

But.

The final paragraph or so was about my brother. This was a fitting place to end because his story intertwined with mine is really important. He died from alcoholism. I didn’t.

Well, there’s a lot more to it than that – but that’s not the problem. The problem is the final line of the article. It says something like: “After what happened to my brother, I was cured forever.”

No. Just. No.

I don’t think I said it, but to give proper credit to the writer who did a good job (I am not trouncing him – interviews are tough and he did a great job of fact checking and making sure most was copacetic prior to print.)

But, no. I am not cured forever. Chris would certainly understand that.

I understand this: I am an alcoholic. After all this press and marketing and “Wow, I read your book” from my small town peeps, I still have a hard time saying that, ‘out loud’ here for you. After all this time. Still bugs me to say it. Still kinda bugs me to have people say, “Yea you! Good job! You’re awesome! You are in recovery! Woo hoo!” I know. That isn’t quite the way they say it, and I KNOW it’s not quite the way they mean it, but humility is really important in my program, and sometimes all the pats on the back can be a way to forget.

That I’m an alcoholic.

Forever. It is a life sentence. It can be a death sentence if I forget. And it’s a sentence that has given me more freedom than I ever thought possible.

So. Nope. Not cured.

But, forever grateful.

Thus is the essential paradox of my situation. If I think about it too long, I get a big wonky, so most of the time, I just mutter the Serenity Prayer and get a coffee and do the next right thing.

Thank you for listening, readers. Does it sound mushy to say I am grateful for you? Well. I am.

And now, I’m gonna go get a Starbucks and while I stand in line I’m going to lay hands on the barista and speak and pray to Jesus to save her soul.

This should go well.

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Winner Winner Chicken, NOT Turkey, Dinner!!

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Ok, I really don’t want another turkey dinner. I ate so much turkey yesterday that I sort of just slid around the rest of the night. Slid to the couch. Slid off the couch to get water. Slid upstairs to bed. Slid into the sheets. Dreamed of angry turkeys, slid outta bed this morning…

You get the idea.

BUT, enough about me. WE HAVE A WINNER!!!!!

After a very scientific drawing of names (hat, paper slips, very upscale) our winner of Charlie and Noel is:

RACHELLE G!!  🙂

I will be sending you a book pronto, my friend. Thank you all for your sweet comments. Oh the traditions! I love it.

Here is my favorite tradition for our family thus far:

I decorate tastefully with all the sweet, antiques from my grandma and my mom.  And then my boys come in and mess with it all and add a plastic dinosaur or two.

And so it goes.

Happy post Thanksgiving Day friends. Stay grateful. It’s the only way to survive.

Don’t let a turkey tell you otherwise.

 

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Top Ten Momsie Thankfuls

 

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I am grateful that the interwebs will never run out of pictures of cats dressed like turkeys. The cat looks so grateful too, doesn’t he?

 

Top Ten Reasons I am Thankful Today:

10. Coffee and the Macy’s Day Parade. Lots of coffee. From my father-in-law’s Keurig. You just push a button and WHOOSH coffee. It’s like coffee from gadget heaven.

9. Pink jammies. Why? Because I’m still in mine. They are Tinkerbell jammies, and did I mention, I’M STILL IN THEM.

8. Momsieblog. It has brought me so many blessings this year. Mainly, an audience that will listen to me meander through my thoughts,  for cripes sake. I don’t get a lot of that at home. I wonder why?

7. When I just asked my husband, “Hey! I’m having a brainblock! What’s something you’re grateful for?” and he answered without any hesitation: “You.” Be still my heart.

6. Watching these boys watch the floats go by. They are entranced. “Da Spidermans! And ninja guy! And I don’t know who that is because mom won’t let us watch anything but der PBS!”

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5. Paired with the jammies is the simple fact that my darling father-in-law made his traditional pancakes for the boys this morning. I have not moved from the couch. Grandpa Ed is da best! I didn’t have to wipe der syrups offa anyone!

4. My husband, who keeps reading tidbits from the sports section of the paper at me. I am grateful that he still, after all these years, thinks I am interested in this.

3. Our church. Have already answered a plethora of texts and posts from them; so grateful for their friendship and their faith. I always picture my church family as those kids at the end of a Charlie Brown Christmas. We are faithful friends to even the most wishy-washy (me). We are also short and rather strangely dressed.

2. Family. Of course. I know it’s the obligatory answer, but holy cannoli I love them so.

1. Jesus. He loves me so. Proof still that miracles happen here on a daily basis.

 

Happy Thanksgiving!

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‘Tis the Season for a Book Giveaway!

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I am grateful for endless pictures of cats in pilgrim hats.

 

Did you know, tomorrow is Thanksgiving?

As is the tradition, tomorrow I will post a list of my Top Ten Things I am Most Grateful For (and yes, I know that ends with a preposition, grammar friends. Don’t hate the player, hate the game).

Phew.

Anyhow. Today I am grateful for this blog, and writing, and fellow writing friends who get this life, and why sitting down with a glowing screen or a pencil and paper is as much a part of our day as flossing (which implicates, then, that we writers have great dental health on top of our ability to alliterate a lot – ’tis true!)

Anyhow. Would you like to get a free book out of all this gratitude? And then you could be grateful, too?

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Franziska Macur has written a sweet gem of a book about celebrating Advent in a way that is meaningful and magical. Your younguns will love it – each day of advent is a short chapter in the book, with additional discussion questions. It’s  a simple, rich, wonderful way to celebrate Advent.

Before the season starts to rev up, with shopping and decorating and baking and parties, enter below for our giveaway, and perhaps Charlie and Noel can help you keep your center.

Here’s the deal:

1. If you would like to enter – leave a comment below about your favorite tradition that you have as a family at Christmas!

2. For an additional entry, go to Franziska’s blog, Home, Naturally and “like” and comment to enter! Click here!

3. You can also go to my facebook page, Momsieblog, and “like” there for one more chance to win! Click here!

 

Giveaway will go through Thanksgiving Day. A winner will be announced Friday the 28th.

Now, go forth and enter. Happy Thanksgiving to you, my readers.

And remember this: I am forever grateful for YOU.

 

 

 

 

 

Veterans’ Day. With a Side of Glitter.

Our neighbors, Gerry and Sue, have been adopted by my sons as our local grandparents. Gerry and Sue really had no choice in this matter; they were stuck living next door to us, and so far have seemed up to the job.

Sue brings by cupcakes for no reason. Just random, fly by cupcakes, all willy nilly, at our door. It’s awesome.

Gerry loaned us a bike for Blonde that has been so well used it is falling apart. Blonde has named it “Rocket” and it will be passed down to Red as soon as he can ride it without training wheels. This might be a while, as when Red does attempt it, the descriptor “careening wildly about all hell-bent for destruction” comes to mind. He is safe on his Diego bike training wheels for now, but Rocket waits patiently.

Gerry is a veteran. This is something I remember about once a year on Veterans’ Day. This seems wrong – it shouldn’t be like that. A soldier’s responsibility to our country is so huge and selfless, it kinda feels like I should be loading Gerry up with  ‘thank yous’ all the time. But perhaps that would get a bit weird.

Me, on front porch: “Hi Gerry! Nice day isn’t it? Thanks for serving our country!”

Gerry: “Yes, er, thank you? You’re welcome?”

Me, at the store: “Well, hi Gerry! There’s a great sale on potatoes. Thanks for fighting for our country. No the other bin – behind the bananas.”

Me, on the phone: “Gerry! Could you take care of our cats while we head out of town? You can? Thank you. I had the cats make a ‘thank you for your sacrifices’ sign and we posted it on the litter box for you. There’s a flag there too. Patriotic kitties.”

Gerry:  “I have no idea how to respond to this.”

Me, later, at their door: “Sue, do you have some flour? I am all out. Oh hi Gerry! Thanks so much for your service! And the flour!”

Sue: “What was that all about?”

Gerry: “She’s weird, that one.”

Like so many things in my life, fraught with good intentions, but yep, still very weird.

 

Anyhow. On Veterans’ Day this year my sons and I wanted to thank Gerry. And, as my wee ones always tend to ask when a ‘thank you’ is in order – “Canna we do da glitter?” Red had a longing glint in his eye; it had been over three long weeks since his last hit of glitter.  Blonde, even longer. He looked wan and disheveled. Glitter is hard to quit.

I took pity on them and said a prayer.

Because nothing says “Thank you for your service to our country” like der sparkles, ya’ll. At least that’s the way it is in our family.

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By the end of this craft both of my boys were so shellacked in glitter that I had to take off their shirts and shake them out in the back yard (the shirts, not the boys). Glitter stuck to Blonde and Red’s eyelashes and to their hair. They streaked glitter across their little white chests and it looked like they were going out to a rave later. All they needed was some glow sticks and some techno beat music, and they’d fit right in.

And don’t get me started on the cat.

Glitter Kitty!!

Glitter Kitty!!

 

We made pretty glittery flags that were nowhere near to actual red, white, and blue colors, so something in me kinda worried that this was breaking some sort of flag rule. I chalked it up to “creative expression” which, heck, we can thank Gerry for.

And as we ate dinner, and the hubs asked, “What’s with the sparkly stuff?” we explained we were thanking our veterans with it. As I picked glitter out of my mashed potatoes I did the same.

And this morning, as I found glitter in my toothbrush, I remembered to thank Gerry.

I have a feeling I will be thanking Gerry all day long.

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 Thank you to all the veterans. You protect us; you sacrifice for us.  My twinkling babies and I thank you so very much.

 

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