Crunchy Christmas House Tour Video For 2013 -2014

The day has finally come.

I am letting go of control and inviting the world to come in for a house tour.

I’ve dreamed of this day. I knew when this day came, if I risked this much, I would be ready to risk almost anything.

So welcome to my Crunchy Christmas Video House Tour , 2013 -2014.

You get to see my downstairs dressed up in pretty holiday finery and a bonus at the end. A guest appearance.

And you get to see me in the mirror a couple of times.

Hopefully it will zing by so quickly, you won’t notice that I have my curtains tacked to the wall and one of the tacks has leaped to freedom. Or that I have not figured out what to do with the dining room or my two little ugly yellow club chairs. Ooops, did I tell you my dirty secrets? Oh well, I’m only human.

Let’s get going shall we? Welcome in.

New York City Whirlwind

The 86th floor observation deck of the Empire State building

Glad to say we made it to and from New York on Saturday with no major malfunctions. We were all pretty fried having gotten up at 5AM. And despite the fact that I smelled like a homeless person for the many pee stops I’d made without the benefit of a bathroom app, we enjoyed our sight-seeing gauntlet.

Although he puked on the bus going up after playing with the video game thing, the five-year son was fairly well-behaved. He stood perfectly still when told to “stay” in a loud commanding voice. We always had a hold of him. And when my husband put him up on his shoulders, he was safer and happier. He never really complained. And I held a pleasant temperament even though I saw my exhausted husband twitching now and again.

We saw the 86th floor of the Empire State Building, Ground Zero, Times Square, and Rockefeller Center. We took three taxis. One took us west and south from mid-town to Ground Zero. And the next took us east and north to Bryant Park. I snapped pictures from the cab of the beautiful architecture of that old city. And we shopped. Husband and child were very patient for the shopping. I wanted to see windows and I did.

I have never visited NYC before. One trip to the Javitz Center doesn’t count. Thanks to my mother, I always thought I should be scared. But I grew up in Baltimore and have rolled around DC a little. And it felt the same to me. Yes the avenues stretch longer in front of you. But when you’re in the middle of the block, it’s all the same. It felt comfortable to me and I was surprised. And it was very clean. My mom still wanted to disagree with me when I told her this.

So thumbs up for the endeavor. Our 20-year-old charge turned 21 at midnight. Her present was the ticket to go, dinner there, and I took her for her first drink up the street at our pub after we arrived home. I was the photog to take the fateful picture. She chose an old-fashioned. The first one went down fine. The second was like battery acid in her stomach. But damn-it we did it.

And yes, we’re already figuring out what we’ll be doing the next time we go. My husband wanted to revisit the Carnegie Deli. I wanted to see Mr. Pink’s or the ABC store. And seeing play or a show would be stupendous. Or Central Park in spring. Yeah for me and my family and my children for seeing the broader world.

Baby Teeth

Alas, sometimes we are forced to grow up, like it or not. From cute shrieking toddlers to rude six year olds, we proceed. And today, we are off to the dentist to have Eamon’s baby tooth yanked from his mouth.  As obstinate as my son ,the baby tooth refuses to leave even though his adult tooth has risen from his jaw in all its glory right behind it. Like it or not, that bad boy’s coming out. And of course I promised him a toy from K-mart for his trauma. Shot next week’ll warrant an ice cream. Happy Wednesday before Thankgiving.

Post Mortem : You can cry and still be brave. My little man lived to tell. In fact , shopping for a toy in the K-mart, he’d forgotten the whole incident. When queried later, he said it wasn’t as bad as he thought it was going to be.

My First Grader’s First Day

Say goodbye to kindergarten, here comes first grade. We already knew Mr. Green’s bus would come at 8:25. It’s still peanut butter and jelly for lunch every day. Except for Friday when it’s pizza day.  I was freed to spend all day doing whatever I wanted to. I decorated and created and dyed my hair and caulked and went to the gym and sanded chairs. And when Eamon got home, he didn’t have that edge that he had last year that I felt I had to coddle and worry over.Yes he was hungry but his sense of humor was still intact. He wanted to return immediately to school and do it all over again, bless his heart. He’s big now, soon to be even bigger.

My Son’s Love Boat Summer

The Master Caster

Hi, I’m Julie my son’s cruise director for the summer’s Love Boat. As my son’s summer scheduler, I made sure that he had the kick ass summer he should have before first grade. Legendary? Yes. He got to experience all of the ego boosting activities kids are supposed to experience.

Recap. We spent a week at the beach making sand castles and daring waves to dump us. He learned to swim and put his head under water in the last hour there. He went fishin’ and watched two fireworks displays. He has a front tooth with an official wiggle. The boy learned to ride a bike well. He’s begun to read because he’s compelled by his curiosity. He mastered Foosball and all sorts of stuff on Wee Sport Resort. He kissed a girl at Y camp. He performed onstage, rode a pony, and spent a week programming computer characters. And he had his own special day in the middle of August. Come on. If that doesn’t sound like the best summer for a six year old, then someone’s an overachiever besides me.

We are their mirrors and the masters of their destinies in many ways. I couldn’t have done any better by him. And I don’t need him to be anything more than happy. Happiness is a gift you give yourself…through your child’s esteem.