after planning for a small, intimate, family-of-five Christmastime...
we headed home for Christmas.
It was the right thing to do.
We didn't want to go. We didn't want to drive four hours. We didn't want to see lots of people. We didn't want to hear lots of loud voices.
But we did. And, in a way, we wanted to.
Because it was the right thing to do.
Mr. Einstein's beloved grandfather has lung cancer.
The same kind of lung cancer his other grandfather died from years ago.
Treatments aren't going well. He's in constant, terrible pain.
So, we went home for Christmas.
It was the right thing to do.
We made peace with the decision. We postponed our small, intimate, family-of-five Christmastime until the 26th. We will still do things the way we originally wanted to, just a little later than planned.
But first, we saw family. We finally got to meet our four month-old niece for the first time.
We got to take the (hopefully, first of many) opportunities to say goodbye.
Because it was the right thing to do.
Merry Christmas, everyone! I hope you have a blessed time with friends and loved ones.
"For unto us a child is born, to us a son is given...And he will be calledWonderful Counselor, Mighty God,Everlasting Father,Prince of Peace."
In the Land of Runny Noses and Poopy Diapers live three children.
E, the oldest, has a runny nose.
C, the middle child, has a runny nose.
M, the baby, has a runny nose.
Their mother is so proud.
Now, E, being the oldest, doesn't wear diapers anymore, but she spends her days fetching tissues for her mother and overseeing diaper changes.
C, the middle child, is 2 1/2. She still wears diapers, and, consequently, still poops in them. C shows no signs of potty training, wanting to potty train, or interest in potty training. Her mother would desperately like her potty trained.
M, the baby, wears diapers, of course. He is expected to poop in them; his mother wouldn't have it any other way. Although, she does wish that she didn't have to monitor his poopy diapers so closely, due to his wheat problems (not allergies, problems).
In this Land of Runny Noses and Poopy Diapers, the mother wipes noses at least eight times an hour. It's a wonder she herself isn't sick. No worries, though; she's confident she'll have her own runny nose to take of by Monday. She is so looking forward to this.
The mother also changes, on average, four poopy diapers by nap time. She thinks her children may have issues.
The father is, of course, at work during most of the day in the Land of Runny Noses and Poopy Diapers. He is blissfully unaware of the nose-wiping and bum-wiping that go on while he is away. The mother, though, makes sure he does his fair share when he returns home each evening. She is good at sharing like that.
Fortunately, in the Land of Runny Noses and Poopy Diapers there is nap time (which is a whole different Land to explore at another time) which begins soon. For this, the mother is grateful.
Yep. I actually got to meet another blogger! For the first. time. ever.
And you know what? It actually wasn't weird at all. (Okay, well, the part where I had to leave her five minutes after she arrived to go pick up E from school was a bit weird, but, whatever.)
Meeting Krista in person, a blogger whom I've "known" for almost 2 years, was like meeting up with a friend that I see all the time. There didn't seem to be any awkward moments, any embarrassed moments, any oh-my-goodness-I-can't-think-of-a-single-thing-to-say moments, any ack!-what-must-she-think-of-my-kid(s)? moments.
Instead, we were comfortable, companionable, relaxed.
We were friends.
I don't know about Krista, but my head was spinning for just a little bit, trying to figure out where this meeting fit in, since my worlds had just collided. But you know what? I'm so glad they did!
Thanks, Krista, for such a wonderful day! I can't wait to get together with you again!
...you live in a three bedroom house, and your baby (who is only going to be a baby for two more days) is sleeping in the nursery, your two year-old is sleeping by herself in the room she shares with her sister, your five year-old is sleeping on the floor in your room because she's sick, you are on the computer at the bar in the kitchen, and your mother-in-law is sleeping on the cot in the living room while your husband is in the self-same living room watching 30 Rock on the laptop.
October was a rough month, and though nothing happened to me and mine, we felt things very deeply that month. And still do.
On October 18th, a beautiful baby boy was born to friends of ours. On October 20th, he went to be with Jesus, leaving his mom, dad, and brother behind. He had some complications at birth, but doctors are calling it a "medical mystery" as to why he died.
On October 20th, the husband of another friend was admitted to the hospital with complications from pneumonia brought on by H1N1. He was comatose, though showing signs of improving. On October 31st, he went to be with Jesus, leaving behind a wife, two sons, and an adopted daughter. He was the sole breadwinner in his family, for almost 10 years traveling across the pass every week to go to work and traveling home every weekend to see his family.
Also on October 20th, Mr. Einstein's beloved grandfather was diagnosed with lung cancer. He's in his 80's, the darling of his family. It's the same kind of lung cancer Mr. Einstein's other grandfather died from years ago, caused by asbestos. He's undergoing chemo, but is having problems after his first treatment.
So much tragedy in so little time. So many mind-shifts. So many things taken for granted. So many opportunities missed and so much insight gained.
Life must go on.
And it does.
The baby boy's family? They've found comfort in Jesus and are still feeling blessed by the very little time their son was a part of their lives.
The widow and her kids? They are clinging to God's promises of eternal life, knowing they will see their husband and father again someday.
Mr. Einstein's family? Those who pray are doing so diligently. Other than that, there is much impatience, much waiting. Plans have been changed, have become fluid. No one knows what the future holds.
Raising two self-proclaimed princesses brings all sorts of fairy tales back to me daily. My girls are obsessed with princesses! Even at two years of age, C can identify and name each and every Disney princess.
But lately, it's been the Princess and the Pea that runs through my mind most often.
I always enjoyed the story of the Princess and the Pea as a child. It was a little fantastical for me, but the idea that a true princess could feel a tiny pea under all those mattresses? THAT is the stuff that fantasies are made of!
Since E's started school, C has really begun to come into her own. It's been fascinating, and a bit frustrating, to watch her little personality grow and expand when her big sister isn't around.
And C? She must have a bit of real princess in her.
Why? Because every morning while M is taking a nap, C asks for a snack. And do you know what she asks for?
Seriously; the kid asks for frozen peas. And she'll eat two bowls full. Every morning.
Sometimes it's nice having a princess (or two) in house!
My poor little Goose! My darling little 2 year-old C! I suppose it was inevitable.
She's so cute, so sweet. She's been forced to grow up so quickly because of M being only 18 months younger than she is.
I suppose, given her age, it was bound to happen.
I suppose it happens to all children eventually.
My careful girl,
my curious girl,
my wants-so-badly-to-be-a-big-girl girl,
fell out of bed the other night.
I'm not exactly sure how she managed it. Between the small bookcase acting as a guard by the head, and the bunk bed ladder acting as a guard by the foot, there's only a two-foot space leading directly to the ground. Apparently, she found it.
Amidst all the turmoil and trauma of me missing my sister's wedding, a highly significant, life-changing event took place in the Einstein household earlier this month.
(No, I'm not pregnant again. It's not possible for Mr. Einstein and me to have another baby together. Trust me.)
What I mean is, the first day of the rest of E's life began: she started kindergarten.
She was just a wee bit excited about it.
Of course, Mr. Einstein started school, too.
He wasn't nearly as excited about it as E was, though.
With this new beginning came homework, of course.
Now, homework isn't new to E; the preschool she was at last year had weekly homework packets, so she was well-trained as to what to expect homework-wise.
The only difference this year is that her sister, C, is older. And has a longer reach. And is more interested.
Mr. Einstein, being an elementary school teacher, has dealt with...well, you name it, he's dealt with it.
One of his biggest pet peeves? THAT Family. One of the things he really can't figure out: How in the world do the kids of THAT Family manage to get food all over their homework? Some days it's so bad, he can actually figure out what THAT Family had for dinner.
With a new blog title, I thought I'd reintroduce the characters you meet here and see every so often.
This is M. M= mass. He's my chunk-of-love, my Bubba. Those 7 month-old rolls? They're about 95% breast milk, and about 5% baby food. He's huge.
This is C. C=speed of light. She's fast and she's 2. 'Nough said.
This is E. E=energy. She's 5 and she's wiry. Now, when Einstein came up with his theory of relativity, I'm sure he didn't have my kids in mind. However, my E? She really does equal MC2. She's the firstborn child of two firstborn children. She's doomed.
This is my hubs, my love, my friend, Mr. Einstein. He's an elementary school teacher. How cool is that?
This is me, Hillary, aka Mrs. Einstein. I'm a little bit sassy, little bit blunt, little bit sarcastic. I look remarkably like my sister in this picture, which is funny because we don't really look much alike.
So, this is us. I'm a math major who taught English married to an English teacher who taught math, and these are our progeny.
Yesterday, at the butt-crack of dawn, we set off on vacation to the Live Music Capitol of the world: Austin, TX.
Beautiful, sunny, oh-so-hot Austin.
I should probably lose five pounds this week just from sweating, if I ever leave the house, that is.
Anyway, our trip started uneventfully at the airport.
Until we got to the gate, that is.
All seven of us (my five, plus my in-laws) had JUST walked up to the gate, when we heard the page: "Prince Charming's father, party of seven, please come to the ticket counter. Prince Charming's father, party of seven, please come to the ticket counter."
We all thought we were being kicked off the plane, for some reason or another. Until my father-in-law got back to us.
"We've been upgraded."
"All seven of us have been upgraded to first class!"
Seriously, we got to fly first class. All seven of us.
And let me tell you, first class is so worth it! Heated towels, breakfast, drinks, super nice flight attendants, wide seats.
So, I've been avoiding posting this, and I'm not sure why.
I want a change. At least, I think I do.
I've been blogging here at The Queen I Am Not for two almost years now. I originally named this blog because of my older daughter's complete and absolute obsession with princesses. That, and every time she played "princess," I never got to be the queen; I was always the bad stepmother, or the prince.
Although she's still into princesses, and has taught her younger sister to love them, as well, princesses don't consume her life anymore.
And now and then, I do actually get to be the queen. When I'm asked to play "princess" anymore. Which isn't often now that my younger daughter is old enough to play along.
While I still like my blog name, and while it's still appropriate, I'm thinking about making a change.
This is what I'm thinking about, and have been for over two weeks now:
I'm considering changing my blog title to E=MC2 (that's a squared, if I can figure out how to do a superscript on here).
Why? Well, for a number of reasons: 1. I'm a math teacher. 2. My husband was a math teacher until yesterday (stupid funding cuts!). 3. E, M, and C are (conveniently) the initials of my children. 4. E, M, and C actually correspond well to my children's personalities.
Before I make any changes, though, I really want your feedback.
I know I haven't posted much lately, but it's partly because this has been weighing on my mind, and I've been trying to avoid it.
I think I want a fresh start, but I really like the comfortable nature of the old/current.
I don't know. What do you think?
Please let me know in the comments. Also, I'll try to get a poll up in the sidebar, if I can figure it out.
Seriously. I want your input. I really do value your opinions!