Thursday, January 1, 2015

The Christmas Hippo

Because I can't make this stuff up- here is the story of how my 3 year old was the Christmas hippo in the Nativity play.

At the first rehearsal, Ella was asked which part she would like to play. Her conversation with the director went something like this:

"Do you want to be a lamb?" No.
"A cow?" No.
"Maybe a dog? I think we have a dog costume." No.
"Did you want to be a shepherd or an angel with the bigger kids?" No.
"How about you tell me what you want to be."

She proudly tells the director, "I going to be a buffalo."

Fantastic. My kid is going to be the Christmas buffalo. Pretty sure there weren't buffalo in Bethlehem but whatever, she's three and it will be cute.

Practice commences without too much of a hitch. Well, there's the minor fact that Ella is obsessed with trying to get the baby Jesus doll and change his poopy diaper. Which she does, several times, pretend poop and all. But it's still all good, since this is only practice, and I'm sure things will be okay by Christmas Eve.

Christmas Eve comes. We get to the church. Go to get her in the costume. Like a true 3 year old, she is quite contrary and doesn't want to be a buffalo any more. I ask her if she still wants to be in the play, thinking if she doesn't, that's fine. She is adamant that she needs to be in the play but she is NOT going to be a buffalo. I ask her what she would like to be instead.

A hippo.

After some quick thinking, a few safety pins, and the helpful fact that 3 year olds have wonderful imaginations, I finangled up a hippo costume. She was delighted. Then the director gave her a teddy bear to carry (in hopes of distracting her from changing baby Jesus' poppy diaper during the play) and her joy was complete.

Things started off okay. She went up the church aisle along side the other kids, proudly clutching her teddy bear. I breathed a sigh of relief and thought this year things would go off without a hitch.

Until she went up to the manger, promptly displaced baby Jesus, and put the teddy bear in his place.

Teddy bear settled, she wandered off to go look at the creche. And somehow managed to break the hand off of St. Joseph.

She spent the remainder of the play walking around trying to touch everything and getting the stink eye from the kid playing Mary.

On the bright side, the poinsettias survived this year.

Goodbye, 2014. Hello, 2015

I know it's totally cliched to write a blog post taking stock of the old year and listing resolutions for the new. However, that's exactly what I am about to do. Deal with it.

2014 will not go down as one of my favorite years. In it we faced:

-Marian getting very sick with RSV and bronchiolitis
-My grandmother's continuing decline in health
-My dad having a massive heart attack
-Ella dealing with severe psychological constipation
-Jim traveling a bunch for work
-Getting the flu right before Ella's birthday and Christmas
-And the final middle finger of 2014, having a crabby teething baby who refused to go to sleep for hours and hours and then when we finally got her settled some asshole neighbor set off fireworks, waking up both kids.

But we also had a lot of good points:

-Traveling to Florida, Raleigh, the Ozarks, Cape Cod, Chicago, Montana, and Yellowstone
-Growing a pretty awesome garden (plus did a fairly good job with canning/freezing)
-Taking lots of fun little local trips to the zoo, children's museum, state park, etc.
-Watching both kids grow and learn and be sweet and silly

Here are my goals/resolutions for the new year:

-Be more mindful of what I eat/drink less coffee
-Get back to exercising on a fairly regular basis (and no, chasing after the kids doesn't count)
-Be better about not letting little things get to me
-Blog more/read more books/take more time for myself

That's all fairly doable, right? Feel free to hold me accountable.