Friday, February 16, 2007

Surprise! Surprise!

Valentine's Day is over. It is over. . .

Ugh, thank God.

And that is what I sang yesterday as I swept the house clean of I heart you day as the kids wailed that no, it wasn't over. They love Valentine's Day. I, as Carmella politely says of things she hates, do not love Valentine's Day.

Valentine's Day use to not leave such a bitter taste in my mouth but now I am starting to get why men don't like it so much. Don't get me wrong, I've always been aware that it is a silly frivolous made-up holiday but before kids it was harmless. And when I was dating? Fun. But now? It is a pain in my ass.

Having kids has truly made almost all holidays richer, joyful and just more pleasurable. But I ask. Really. Does every single holiday have to be such a big deal? It is just out of hand. And each year it gets harder. Use to be, on Valentine's Day, Carmella and I would make some cookies and get a few cards and hand out hugs and kisses and little gifties to the grandparents. Ryan and I would go out for an adult evening sometime that week.

Big huge exhausted sigh though. Now, since they have started school, Valentine's Day just gets crazier and crazier. For Carmella's class she had a homework assignment to get a gift for a secret Valentine. It was a lesson in money and shopping. As if any child of mine isn't already a proficient shopper. But nonetheless she and I counted out some money and we went and pick out a gift. She purchased the gift herself and wrapped the gift and made a card. That was on Sunday.

Then we had to do 18 Valentines for her classmates. She wrote them out but I had to attach the candy--you can't just do a card. You have to attach the candy. Some people even do little gifts and candy. I don't. See how slack I am? See me rolling my eyes at those other one-upper, I-am-a-better-Mommy-than-you Moms who do both? Did you see it? If not here it is again: Eye roll-- to the back of the head. So big I can see my optic nerve.

Then I did Beau's 14 Valentines and candy. I had to do all of those because he can't write his name yet--or anyone else's-- not that he would have had the attention span to do 14 Valentine's anyway.

Then we had to get our teacher gifts together. Both Beau and Carmella each have 2 teachers. So for those not so great at math that is 4. 4 teacher gifts. I made them flower arrangements. The kids made them cards.

Then we did our grandma and grandpa gifts and cards.

We worked on all that on Tuesday.

Oh yeah. Did I mention that I signed up earlier in the year to do the Valentine's party for Beau's class? For this party another Mom and I planned a craft, a game, books and cookies. For the craft we decided to make picture frames for the kids to give. So I have spent the past 2 weeks popping in Beau's class to take pictures of his classmates. I spent Monday and Tuesday printing those pictures out. I had suggested to the other Mom that perhaps we should put together the frames so that all the kids had to do was glue on the embellishments. I mean they are 3 and the party is only 40 minutes. But she assured me that the frames were simple to put together.

And they were. If you are 35 and have a glue gun and an hour and half. But see we didn't have an hour and half or a glue gun and regular glue didn't work and tape just looked bad. So we skipped the craft and I offered to put them together and give them out the next day.

And after Carmella had dance(and despite her wanting me to I did not buy the ballet teachers Valentine gifts. The madness has to end somewhere.)

And after we delivered the grandparent Valentines (they had wanted to do one for Meme and Pat and Baby Pat but again I drew the line. Sorry guys. We do love you.)

And after a family dinner out. . .

I, finally home and armed with my handy glue gun-- which I had forgotten I even owned but lucky that I do-- put all 14 frames together.
Let me advise you that you should not operate a glue gun after you have had a couple of beers. I mean, unless you like having 1st and 2ND degree burns all over your fingers and hands. Good thing the kids were in bed by this point and didn't have to hear me say fuck, damn it, holy mother of God every other minute as put those things together.

Valentine's Day is over, it is over.

Please tell me that St.Patrick's Day is still just a day where the only thing required is to wear green, watch a parade and drink some beer.
Hell, I'll even consent to eating Bubbles's corned beef and cabbage (gag) so long as my glue gun can remain forgotten in the laundry room and I don't have 3 days of homework.


  1. Natalie, I hear you. I had Sophie make cards for all her grandparents and some out of town aunts and uncles...but she is 5 and can do that by herself. She did write her name on each of her classmates' valentines, and that was painful enough, 17 in all. I thought about attaching candy, but never got to it. You are a better woman than I, the frames turned out really nice. Why that other mother thought a 3 yr old would be able to assemble that?? The best thing about V-Day for me? Stealing the good chocolate from Sophie's bag of goodies, I just had a wonderful Dove heart.

  2. Dorothy, I have to be honest in that the candy only got attached because I bought so much for Carmella's party favors that I had plenty to spare.I really hate how much candy and treats my kids get from their schools. It makes me look mean because I won't ever let them have any because they already get so much at school.
    I have no idea what she was thinking. In her defense she works and does have an infant so maybe it was a time issue but I would have happily assembled them prior to the party if she didn't have time. Doesn't matter now. The kids liked how they turned out and they loved me taking their pictures. Little kids are so easy to please. It is just us Mommies that seem to do the overkill.