Premature Jingling is almost done!

Yes, I am a member of the Facebook Anti-Jingler League, ie; we’d rather not hear or see Christmas related merchandise. Then I caved. I caved because the epic-osity that is Christmas FM has now started on radio frequency 94.45 (on my radio which is like 30 years old) This year they’re supporting AWARE, the charity which supports depression and you know what? I may actually donate this year!

Feliz Navidad has already been lightig up the ground floor of my house this lovely, shivery morning and, although it was competing with Jungle Junction and Mike the Knight, it fared well and we could still hear it from the TV room!

I am not, however, a premature Jangler. My decorations don’t come downstairs until the 5th, whereupon they’re put up on the 6th, kind of- because we don’t get our tree until the 20th (ritual; don’t ask). That said, we have a waddler to contend with this year….

(shivers)

The last time I had waddlers, my girls were 2 and 1 and we were in a tiny ground floor apartment and left it so late to get a tree that the only ones left were 2 ft tall so I put it up on an IKEA table and the whole effect was rather cute and thoroughly unintentionally shabby chic (albeit the only time I’ve ever gotten it right, too)

And that experience was horrendous. All our good (ceramic) decorations were put up on a shelf between the kitchenette and the living room and the all the unbreakable baubles were left on Mr. Fir for the kids to look at; and a lot went on the floor. I couldn’t even fit lights on the dang thing so they went up around the room.

And this guy is WAY more persistent then the two combined so in a way I am dreading the Tree aspect.

Santa letters haven’t been finalised, haven’t been posted. We’re heading to Santa at the Botanical Gardens because it’s free and their is pie and Mr. Claus, most importantly and also I don’t think I’ve ever been there before.

I’m a little excited… you may have seen…

Any suggestions on the Tree Dilemma would be appreciated. The table thing isn’t really an option this year as the room is big but full of furniture that is too big to move.

 

Teehee, Christmas FM is on and I have 2 days before I can legitimately wear a Santa hat.

Excyrah!!

My girls, just after Christmas 3 years ago.

Now this is ancient but Eldest's face kind of sums up how I'm feeling right now!

Now this is ancient but Eldest’s face kind of sums up how I’m feeling right now!

 

Impending Holly and Ivy and jingly things

Dread. Sadly, a feeling I am beginning to associate more and more with this ‘most wonderful time of the year’. Tight wallets, unfriendly prices and intimidatingly expensive ‘popular’ toys are driving an ever-increasing wedge in the already existent thorn in my side that emerges November 1st- sometimes earlier.

I like the spirit and the theoretical snow and ‘Christmas Clothes’ and… that’s actually about it.

Father Christmas/ Sinter Klaas/ Santa Claus or ‘Santy’ as he is known by the majority of Dublin has become a burden and I hate that.

I resent the contest between kids and parents over who got what and why and how bad is that…

I literally despise the subjugation of my younger generation; the 3-10 year olds; to the whip of technology. Hub expects to buy 2 handheld brain numbing devices + games in coming weeks. As well as surplus and superfluous thingies and whatnots. My kids need clothes and, curiously, that is seen as way down the list of Christmas Import. My darlings are weeds. Yes, they come from extremely tall stock- not me, but others. As such, even with MonsterBear, they’re wearing clothes 2 sizes ahead, to allow for the height difference.

My kids have toys. Loads of toys, in no small part due to a certain branch of the family which shall remain nameless. But they don’t PLAY with them! Unless forced! Because TV is so unequivocally awesome. I get that.

Elder has a few Xbox games. She has all but forgot their existence.

Right now, they’re into Sophia on DisneyJunior. the games online too. Which is cool but, as such, I don’t see what’s so wrong with basic PC games.

Frankly, I’m a hardass about toys. I’m only recently retracting a harsh ban on sluttified articulated dolls.

Combing the IKEA toys section and I am blown away. This is what I want to see. Funded Imaginative Play. Brilliant little things like puppet theatres and softplay food for a sturdy kitchen and EVEN little adult ceramic tea sets and pot sets! Art easels and supplies. I have found my Lapland..

Now.. to reclaim the season and not just the Things. 

Re Entering Groove; phase 2

And I’m surprised. Try as I might, when a new plot/ theory/ idea/ landscape/ rationale forms in the grey cells upstairs, I can chug away for a cúpla days/ weeks working on it and then I burn out.
I have not this time and I am enthused. I’m not killing myself to put down what is in my head, yet neither have I over-planned or left a stupid amount of holes and questions.
It’s going well. Initial hiccups that I, being biased, did not see but now all is trucking at pace. I have 4 sections in my head and as such my head is quite full and I am grouchy for it but I am, again, in no hurry to put pen to paper (computers are for refining in my book).
Hub reviewed first and second stages, which is rare for me and, rarer still, the Flashy, Awesome one, whose blog name on this I cannot recall also read it and liked it. I never NEVER have outside readers. Not since I was much less busty and far more frowsy and that little bit more stupid and gullible. I left myself open and was thrown from my own Kentigern. I’m more ascerbic and laughable now.
So, as such, I am encouraged. Heck- I even told my mom and she was upset-happy because I haven’t spoken to her about a serious concept in a seriously long time.
and now 3 people (and my own gut) have my back and the only way up a hill is to start moving so I am and will.
And thank you to Hub, Coggs, mum and Gut.
Much Appreciated, much adored.
x0x0x0x0x0x0x0x0x0x0x0x0x

Slightly Silly but a little Lovely. Favourite HP characters and why they relate to your personality :)

Minerva McGonagall: You might be a little uptight, but you’re a good person. You get things done, and you’re a natural organizer. You’re very practical and matter-of-fact about things.

Luna Lovegood: Your head is in the clouds most of the time, and you’re very idealistic. You base many of your observations and choices on your intuition, and you’re often correct. You have a calming presence, and you’re also a very curious person.

Hermione Granger: You’re really smart, maybe kind of a know-it-all, but you really just love books and learning! You shouldn’t be faulted for that. You’re a natural problem-solver. You’re a loyal, caring person, even if these traits can manifest themselves in an overly-protective, motherly manner.

 

This (all 3 in their entirety) is me. Love it!

 

Here’s the Link so you can find out too!!

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/11/04/harry-potter-characters-_n_4182002.html

Tribulations of ‘Older Kid Influence’

Boy. Wow. Holy shtfreaks. My girls have met with a doozy. Starting a new school is the kind of tricky time where I don’t want wind in their sails or bees in their bonnets. It’s been enough of an uphill to have Eldest fit in with girls who’ve known each other a year. Younger, initially, was fine. And then we meet Brat. Capital ‘B’ fully intentional and completely repurposeful.
Brat, it turns out, is the progeny of an ex-aquaintance of my family. We’ll call this person Ispini (It’s Irish, pronounce it ‘Ish-pee-nee’) So Ispini and Brat, it turns out, have kind of attached themselves to my girls. Brat is in the same class as Eldest, although they don’t sit together. Eldest likes Brat well enough but we’ve had a serious Brat and Ispini saturation since school started 2 months ago and, to be honest, Eldest is a little sick of her, going as far as to say, ‘I don’t want her as a friend.’
This is, I think, a marginally profound thing for a 5 year old to come out with. This isn’t a petty ‘best friend one day, enemies the next and playdates on Saturday’ kind of an issue. Since the start of the friendship, Eldest has taken ‘quiet time’ breaks from Brat because Brat is SO intense.
Par Example. Brat doesn’t use common manners such as please and thank you. Brat demands.
If Brat does not get her way (spontaneous playdates, treats, to jump in lake-size puddles etc) she WILL tantrum.
This kid is 6.
Brat expects- EXPECTS- a continuous train of snacks to be provided whether at home or out
Brat also doesn’t seem to be able to finish up in the bathroom properly.
Brat routinely wont clean her room, pick up her clothes, so much as hang up her coat or pass an item to on
request.
Brat speaks fluent Whinge, Wail, Moan, Scream and Nag
Brat is also, unfortunately, quite indulged, quite ignored and very very smart.
Brat, actually, is fine once she gets used to non-home routine. I don’t mind her. I have no problem having her over, though she is a lot to take.
She is, however, a bully. Teachers are aware, Ispini is aware and ignorant and the kids in school, for the most part, do steer clear.
So when Eldest decided that she didn’t want her as a friend I secretly applauded her for knowing her own mind and being aware that the friendship had become more of a boss-underdog kind of thing.
Which brings me to Younger.
I have always thought of Younger as a very strong person, very determined, really knows her own mind and is able to stand on her feet. Brat is eroding my Younger from herself.
In the last 4 weeks there has been such a significant change in Younger that sometimes I think, ‘Is this actually my kid?’
Younger now has violent tantrums, is unprecedentedly rude and intolerant and is constantly on the verge of tears. She is also wetting the bed. Seriously bad sign.
Now, being objective, I would put this down to many factors; new school; new friends; old- school teacher (who is the sweetest hard-arse I’ve yet come across) as well as change in routine and growing phases. I would be deluding myself and know how stupidly wrong I was. Sure they’re all stages and they manifest in different ways but this is not minor adjustment.
I found out something quite intimidating today.
Eldest plays with other kids in her class because she doesn’t often want to play with Brat who is very controlling. Fair enough. It turns out that Brat dragged Younger away from her friends and made her play with her. (Excuse the grammar there)
If an of Younger’s friends came over, they were literally pushed away.
Younger had 2 accidents today. In school. In public. This is a whole new LEVEL of Parent-Freak Out.
Hub and I have decided (as of 2 weeks ago) to scale back playdates with Brat (which is hard as she comes out of school screaming that my 2 are going over and Ispini goes ‘Okay! Then Let’s go!”
I’m not a great person for confrontation. I am fundamentally diplomatic and it gets difficult to refuse playdates when a lot of people are in your face and kids are making a whole lot of noise and other parents are watching with quiet interest when I say ‘No’ and Brat erupts into screeches of complaint.
I’ve tried backing them away from Ispini and Brat as a whole but there are 5 and 1/2 hours everyday were I am not in control and the teachers on the yard can only do so much.
Not expecting answers. Just venting. And I cannot stress enough how hard a time I have saying no to people other than my family and close friends.
Sigh.
Rant over.