Five days of uninterrupted family bliss is just a bit too much for me and if I don’t get a good fast run in soon there’s going to be trouble. When our fabulous friend Cynthia offered to baby-sit last night, so we could escape to dinner she earned our unending love. The down town mall never looked so good. We started our blizzard experience with a slumber party with our friends Liz and John and their three kids—yup that makes ten in one house. Needless to say that by the time latkas were consumed and candles were lit the snow the roads were too much for the flame van. Jonathan didn’t as it turns out have quite the proper gear. He had come strait from violin which he’d been so tantrumy about going to that I had to sit on him to hold him down while my friend Grace and I both put his shoes on him. (Yes it sometimes takes two tenured professor twin moms to outfit one six year old) He didn’t quite have the gear. He was apparently an angel at violin and earned an elaborate knight sticker. The snow was pretty magical in the morning and all five big kids were outside by 8 with snow pants over pj’s. Liz got so jazzed by frying that she did it again the next morning with pancakes. At some point I announced that anyone who potty trained Eli would get anything they wanted at Toys R Us. The adult wishes aren’t fit for public domain. The kids embraced this and set about writing boys and girls all over everything so that when he goes to school he’ll know which bathroom to go to. The kids all got along incredibly well enabled partially by my expert ipod tutorial that occupied the ten year old for much of the time. We finally got a lift home from a neighbor on Sat afternoon just in time for me to cross country ski around the neighborhood. As it turned out it was not a moment too soon as Eli was up all night puking about every 23 minute—that would I’m sure have done the slumber party bliss in.
Meanwhile the Christmas hegemony has set in with full force. The kids are asking me if I think we can attract Santa this year and if not maybe we should give someone else some cookies so they can give them to him. They are fixated on the whole cookie thing. So I explained that thanks to the Macabes 8 day hold out they already got 8 days worth of things they did not need and now we wouldn’t get more from Santa. (Since having children I’ve often wished the whole festival was a mere four nights) In the process I realized I’ve basically convinced my kids that Santa is anti-Semitic since he doesn’t come to Jewish houses---it’s sort of Passover meets pagan ritual. This seems impolitic at best. We had an inkling of this last year when I had the kids gather up toys to donate to kids whose mommy’s and daddy’s couldn’t afford holiday gifts. Without missing a beat Rebecca and Jonathan announced that we should just give the toys to the disadvantaged Jewish kids since poor Christian kids would have Santa. (In central Virginia impoverished Jews are not the problem) My friend thinks I should just tell them Santa isn’t real; but I don’t want them blowing it for the rest of the first grade. She also was quick enough to suggest I burst this bubble after we’ve left cville….. My niece by the way when told that if she was naughty Santa would bring coal announced “that’s ok I’ll just throw it in my mommy’s face…..” She’s going to be trouble later.
In the middle of this I got a love note from one of the Deans reminding me that if my grades are not in by midnight tonight something terrible will happen. After much cursing and three phone calls I figured out how to enter my grades on the hateful SIS. I haven’t yet gotten a similar love note about a paper that was due last week but I suspect that will come at any moment.