Wednesday, December 31, 2014

New Year's Eve

Dear Claire,
     Everyone said to enjoy it, that time flies, and it really has!  You can do and say so much, you're always on the go, and your little personality just shines so bright.  You're like the energizer bunny, and while I don't get tired of your endless play, sometimes I do your endless chatter.  That's the part of the day I ask if you want to watch a show, to which you always reply, "Monsters!"  I made you a playroom and sometimes when you're in there with the door closed, and I can hear you talking to your Care Bears and horsies, I can't help but get a little sentimental.  You're so independent.  And even though this is what I wanted, I still like it when you need me.
     Other than Monsters, Inc. you like cars, trains, Mickey Mouse, Elsa, and your iPad.  Your favourite foods are cheese, avocado, grapes, and yogurt.  But you eat pretty much everything I serve, you've never been picky in that way.  You love to laugh, to be tickled, and to be scared.  You watched every episode of American Horror Story on my lap this season, and I loved having your undivided attention for that one hour a week.  I sure hope I didn't scar you for life!
     The best thing you do is make up songs.  You have a natural ability that your dad and I don't, in that you're musical.  You know the words to songs I've sung to you at bedtime, when you're half asleep.  You know the words to Let It Go even though we've never watched Frozen.  Anytime a commercial comes on with electronic dance music, you stop whatever you're doing and kind of fall into a trance.  It's amazing to watch you.  I could watch you doing mundane things all day long.  I could watch you sleep.
     You continue to impress me with your abilities, like how you potty trained.  How polite you are; always remembering your manners, to throw away your trash, and to put your toys away.  I rarely have to tell you things twice or yell at you, or put in trouble.  And the rare occasions that I do, know that it hurts me more than it hurts you.  When you do something bad and I speak to you harshly, you cry and come at me with hugs and kisses.  How can I stay mad at you like that?
     Daddy and I are completely in awe of you.  We love you so much.

Love, Mummy

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Where's My Water?

I came home yesterday to our water shut off. 

Since I had decided on a last minute addition to our gifts for Claire, the Lego Frozen Castle wasn't in the budget.  So when I asked DP to pick it up, I transferred the money out of our bills account.  Then later when I was reconciling the statement, I noticed that we had an outgoing transfer of $32.09, and since that just so happened to be the exact amount of our water bill, I checked it off as paid. 

Except it wasn't paid.  And now we had no water. 

So when I was home that evening, I was feeling kind of sheepish for having made such a blunder and left us without running water.  It was an easy fix, and I took care of it.

But while I was waiting for it to come back on, DP and I were folding up the Christmas lights in the garage, and he says to me, "Hey so did you notice that little faucet isn't leaking anymore?"  I'm like, "No, I didn't notice.  That's cool though what happened?"  And he says, "Well, I turned off the pipe."


Well now I know the water company didn't shut me off for non-payment of a thirty dollar bill, so that's cool.

Monday, December 29, 2014

No Elsa, YOU Let It Go

One of the gifts that Claire opened first on Christmas morning was the Lego Frozen Castle.  I had mentioned before that we never showed her the movie or had any Frozen merchandise around the house, so I thought she didn't know what it was.  Plus anytime we see Olaf she yells out, "Snowman!" instead of calling him by name.  But when she opened her Lego Frozen Castle, she looked at it, said, "Elsa," then calmly tossed it aside.  I was really surprised.  But since Daycare is raising my baby, I didn't give it too much thought.  And honestly, who DOESN'T know Elsa?  (Besides DP.)

So later on that day, my MIL gave Claire a princess dress for Christmas.  Queen Elsa, to be exact.  I had to show off and told everyone to listen while I asked Claire who that was, and when Claire said, "Elsa," we all laughed and clapped.  Does she have us trained, or what?  I thought it was the most beautiful dress I had ever seen, and the cape looked real, like what she wears in the movie.  (Can you tell I really love Frozen?)

And she looked adorable!   

But then Claire's dress started twinkling. 

And playing the song. 

"Let it go...let it goooooooooooooo..." and Claire started SINGING the actual words.  (I mean, they aren't hard.)  But what the hell kind of dress is this?

She's lucky she's cute, that's all I'm going to say about that.

Friday, December 26, 2014

Presents Presents Presents

But first, let me get the stocking.


We went to church, and Claire was perfect.  I was bummed because this was the first time we were going to go to church as a family (since Claire's baptism) but after being up until 2am wrapping presents, DP decided to stay home.  I almost left Claire with him but decided at the last second to just take her.  So maybe that's why she was so good, subconsciously she knew she almost didn't get to go! 

After church we came home and Claire opened up all her presents from us/Santa.  She didn't give much of a reaction, just kind of opened one, said thank you, then went on to the next.  She was so serious.  My parents, and Rishi and the kids came over after church too, and we all exchanged more gifts and had breakfast.

I'm not gonna lie, I kind of loved the hustle & bustle, the mess, and the noise.  And it was all at my house, which wasn't really "planned" but still kind of came together well.  My mom brought ham and rolls, I opened a good bottle of hot sauce, and we popped champagne.  I am so into making this a tradition.

After everyone left, Claire fell asleep on the floor amidst her toys, and with jelly beans in her mouth.  She didn't sleep very long before we had to wake her up to go to my in-laws.  DP wanted to let her sleep but I was like, "She can sleep later...I'm hungry."  So we went over there for more food and more presents and more more more!  It was fantastic. 

By five o'clock, we were done.  Went home, zoned out on the couch for an hour, and all 3 of us were in bed by 7pm.  On Boxing Day Claire decided to stay home from school, so it took me all of 7 seconds to decide I was going to work.  Good luck Daddy!

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Merry Christmas

I worked half a day on Christmas Eve, then DP dropped Claire at my in-laws and he and I raced around to 6 stores (including Toys R Us!) getting last-minute stuff. I had dreaded having to do this all morning, but once we got going, it was actually quite fun.  We held hands and picked out the items on my list, and joked around.  And we were super efficient. I can't imagine how enjoyable shopping must have been before Claire became a heinous toddler, because I can't remember that far back.

After dinner at my parents', my cousin came home with us and put together Claire's Santa gift.  I had done this last year with her kitchen set until 4am, so this year we outsourced.  He only has working arm so he must really love her. 

Christmas morning came, and Claire slept in a little.  At 7am I opened my eyes and she was up, so I said to her, " you know who came last night?"  And with a big grin she said, "Yessssss..."  So I'm like, "Who?"  And she goes, "Uncle Shiu!"

"No Claire, it was Santa.  And he brought you presents!"  But she wanted Uncle Shiu.

I finally convinced her that it would be okay and I promised she would like what Santa brought for her, so we went downstairs.  DP had lined the stairs with LED balloons, so the lights were off, and my video didn't capture much without the flash.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Christmas Eve Dinner

For 30 years (until I had Claire) I spent Christmas in Vancouver whether I lived there or not.  We did a big formal Christmas Eve at my grandparents' and then slept over.  All the cousins did.  Christmas mornings were spent together - we did our stockings, then church, then breakfast, then presents - always together, always all of us.  The rest of the day was at my other grandmother's house with my other 20 or so cousins, friends, whoever.  It was always a party.
Since we didn't go to Vancouver at all this year, my mom and dad hosted Christmas Eve the way my grandparents used to.  With meat.  And activities for the kids.


DP even wore actual real pants.  (That's how you know it was formal.)  I wish I had gotten a picture of the giant prawns my dad sautéed but as soon as I saw them, I think I dove right in.  After our feast, my aunt busted out a million presents for the kids, so they had a blast opening them all and proving me wrong about what we do/don't do on Christmas Eve.  Claire remembered to say "thank you" after each one too.

Another Christmas Eve tradition is pajamas.  My grandmother used to make mine but then started buying them as our family grew.  Every year she tells us that she didn't get them because it's getting to be too much, or she didn't have time, or we're not kids anymore.  But every year she comes thru.  Even this first Christmas that I didn't see her.  She went one up with Claire because she also got a cute Mickey Mouse robe. 

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Okay Fine. ONE Present.

DP has been trying to get Claire to open this one specific present he bought her, since the day he brought it home and wrapped it.  Claire is hilarious though, she's still young enough to not realize that she can disobey me, so she wouldn't even entertain the idea.

I don't know what DP's obsession is with Christmas presents anyway.  For example:
  • I mentioned before how he wanted the kids to come over and see all their presents wrapped and under our tree.  It's was actually a really sweet sentiment but I would have never in a million years ever thought that was important.  I'm definitely glad we did it though.  They enjoyed speculating and shaking them, and begging for hints.
  • The whole reason I have even been here in Las Vegas for Christmas the past 2 years is because DP has this thing about waking up on Christmas morning in our own home.  Because "that's where Santa comes with her presents" even though Claire was a newborn and wouldn't know the difference anyway.  I agreed to it because he doesn't very often get his way and this seemed SO VERY IMPORTANT to him.  That first Christmas was a little bit lonely but I got over it for the sake of new traditions.
  • He keeps asking me if we have enough presents for Claire and I can see him doing a mental tally.  I bought her one from me (the Lego that was an accidental purchase) and one from Santa.  DP bought her 4.  And that's fine, but he is more interested in quantity than quality.  Why not get her 2 or 3 really awesome things instead of 10 stupid things that are going to be broken by February?  "No," he says, "because boxes under the tree look cool."
  • My mom and dad are hosting us for Christmas Eve dinner.  This morning DP was telling Claire that we're going to Granny and Gramps' house to open presents.  I'm like, "Wtf?  We're not opening presents on Christmas Eve, don't get her hopes up!"  So he's like, "Well why are going there then?" celebrate Christmas with my family, to have cocktails and dinner and maybe some roasted nuts?  CHRISTMAS IS NOT ALL ABOUT PRESENTS.
For the record, he's not materialistic like this in every day life outside of Christmas.  His family isn't either.  I'm seriously judging him.

So last night he insisted on Claire opening his silly present so I let them.  Yes, them.  And I'm not even gonna lie, she was really cute about it.