and there you have it…


December 2008

Dear Maralee

We are interupting the previously scheduled post to bring you a letter from Grant. Enjoy.

dear maralee,

i saw you in store today, ok.  blue and green ones in store. i shake blue one, ok. see you in mommy’s work ‘fore, ok. you go bye bye lots. you love thomas. i love thomas too, ok. bye bye. I love you, ok.


Gift #2 – Thomas Lighthouse

So for the second gift of the season I choose Grant’s new Thomas Lighthouse. If you’ve read many of these entries, you know my son is in love with Thomas . That’s a link by the way, click on it…I just learned how to do that 🙂

This is an obsession fueled by my husband and his parents, as such do you think Grant got more Thomas at the Byce Christmas? You bet he did. He got a lighthouse and bridge combo complete with Bulstrode  (another fun link…you know you’re dying to see what Bulstrode looks like). I was going to describe it myself but decided I couldn’t top this ad I found online (only some emphasis added).

“A must-have for any Thomas enthusiast! Raise drawbridge so boats can pass through below. The Sights & Sounds Lighthouse Bridge is ACTION-PACKED, featuring a working drawbridge, roating lights, realistic wharf SOUNDS and Bulstrode, a classic character on Sodor as seen in “Special Attraction” story. Includes 2″ adapter track piece. Requires two AA bateries.”

Below is a coversation with my very own Thomas Enthusiast, the morning after Christmas….

Foghorn sounds

Grant: What’s dat mama?!?!

Me: It’s a foghorn, remember from your Thomas book?

Grant: Yhea!

birds and harbor bells sounds

Grant: What’s dat mama?!?!

Me: Those are bells

foghorn sounds again

Grant: What’s dat mama?!?!

Me: That’s still a foghorn Grant

birds and bell sound

Grant: What’s dat mama?!?!

Me: Those are bells

Grant: BIRDS!! Momma, those are Birds!

Who knew birds would be so insanely exciting.

gift #1

So I’ve decided the next series of posts will be on the gifts of the season. I promise I will not tell you of them all, even though we did cut it down to just three Christmases this year. I wouldn’t want to bore you, or myself for that matter. So I will limit myself to some yet to be determined number of gifts that will be at least two less than the total received.

Gift number one was from my mother, at Christmas number two, and it was, you ready for this? An Obama angel for the Christmas tree.

Now I feel this gift needs a bit of history to be fully appreciated. This year I had told myself and my family that whoever I decided to vote for, I was not going to tell them. It was simply too polorized of an election.  As many of you have already guessed, I did not keep my vow…and my family doesn’t read this blog anyway. So here it is…I voted for Obama.

The day after the election my mother was practically in tears over the fate of our country, as it was common knowledge that Obama was certain to usher in the end of the world. Now I was not a feverent Obama supporter, I’m glad that he won, I did vote for him, but it really felt more like voting for the lesser of two evils this election than anything else. So to ease her fears I told her that her overly rational and highly beloved daugher voted for Obama. And then tried to assure her that he was indeed NOT  the anti-christ. After she got over her shock, which lasted for days, she tells me she is going to try to like Obama (I can barely even say his name….she tells me)…after all he is our President.

So for Christmas she gives me a little black naked cherb angel ornament and proudly proclaims it is an Obama angel, to show her support of me and Obama. How a naked angel ornament supports Obama I’ll never know, but she was quite proud of her creativity…and Lord help her, she’s trying.

On a side note…my son enjoyed the gift. He went around all morning carrying the ornament and telling me “little boy clothes off momma” and “no clothes poo poo.”


Having discovered how much the kids actually like going to the store, I’ve decided it’s easier to just take one kid with me and go after dinner. This eliminates a night of grouchy mom snapping at everyone because I know after the kids are in bed and I want to crash, I’ll have to drag myself out of the house, and go grocery shopping by myself, which is the ultimate evil. 

So Grant was the lucky duck this time, and Publix (pronounced pub-lix, for you Yankees) was our place of choice. They have monsterous carts and I had cupouns. The shopping trip was uneventful. Things didn’t get intersting till bedtime. It was daddy’s night, so I wittled away the time on facebook until I was summoned to pray, since apparently I’m the only one that can pray…according to Grant.  

In an effort to squish our inborn selfishness we pray for other people every night. The usual number is three. The three he picks are fairly consistant: papa, nana, and Jena, in that order. Occasionally others are thrown in, depends on who he saw that day. If more are allowed that night daddy is usually the fourth. Mommy, occassionally, will bottom out the list if I allow him to go on endlessly…which I quite frequently do, it’s hard to be a nazi about the rules when your kid is asking to pray for more people…

So I go in to start the normal drill; I ask him who wants to pray for. Top of the list is……PUBLIX. That somehow made the fact that I barely make the list at all not so bad.

bedtime stories

So every night we read Grant two bedtime stories, and we let him pick which two. He recently got a new Thomas book, so can you guess what one of those has been for the last two weeks? That’d be the new Thomas book. Surely you know Thomas, Thomas the Tank Engine, he has train friends named James and Percy, and a helicopter aquiantence named Harold, and they all live in our house with 800 versions of Thomas…please tell me I’m not the only one subjected to this…

To restate the obvious, Grant LOVES Thomas.  Mommy, on the other hand, not so much. The Thomas book is decent enough, I guess. It’s just really long, and about Thomas. So when it’s been a long day already….I skip pages. Don’t judge, you know you do it too. Having driven from Gainesville to Orlando with both children, today qualified as a long day. So I proceed to cleverly turn two pages instead of one, and happily notice that it doesn’t even disrupt the story, score.

‘Mavis,’ at least I think that’s what he said…he’s chewing on his fingers again…it was muffled…I pretend I didn’t hear and read on about Harold, Grant’s latest favorite, hoping he’ll be distracted. Two sentences in, he removes his fingers and I clearly hear…’Mavis Mommy, where’s Mavis?’ Can you guess who was on the page I skipped…Mavis. How did he know that? I didn’t know that.

The kid’s on to me, my gig is up.

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