Merry Christmas Eve and Happy Mother’s Day (and Day 9 of 7+ Giveaways)

I gave my dad homemade cinnamon rolls for Christmas because I’m a kind and loving daughter. 

And because I’m amazing and can do All of the Things at Christmas time!

And maybe a teeny tiny bit because I let my kids eat the cinnamon rolls I gave my dad for Father’s Day.

All of them.

As in, I let my kids eat every single cinnamon roll I gave my dad for Father’s Day, and my dad didn’t get any.

In my defense, though, my dad’s been to my house and has watched the cloud of locusts descend, like, hundreds of times, so he should know to eat things quickly before they’re consumed by the insatiable swarms.

Still, my dad’s been extra pathetic for the past 6 months about the rolls, so, in a fit of Christmas weakness, I became a cinnamon roll enabler. 

Also, I lied when I said I can do All of the Things at Christmas time. 

I lied and lied and lied, and I was a lying liar who lies.

Because I can’t do All of the Things at Christmas time.

Or All of the Things any of the time. 

I can’t do even do Most of the Things most of the time.

I can do SOME of the Things some of the time, though!

Except when I quit and lay down underneath my table and do None of the Things. So I do None of the Things some of the time, too.

Unless feeling guilty for not doing Any of the Things counts as a thing. In that case, I rarely do None of the Things, but I often do One of the Things, and I do that thing really well.

We found out yesterday that we’ve got a kid having surgery this Friday. He needs his eardrums repaired and his tonsils removed, and it’s Winter Break so WHEEEEEE! Off we go! But I was struck by the fact that the Things I’ve Done for Christmas at this point will have to be Enough of the Things. Because I can’t do Any More of the Things. I just… can’t.

I wrote my friend Mary Beth last night after I found out about the surgery. Mary Beth’s a mama who Has Mama Experience, like me, and I thought she might Get It, so I wrote about the day, and I wrote about the stress, and I confessed that this week may slay me, but then I said, “You know what’s nice about being a more experienced mama, Mary Beth? Knowing that there’s truly VERY little my kids need to have a happy Christmas. Main ingredients: sporadically attentive parents, one gift they really love, too much sugar, mass chaos, Baby Jesus and full stockings. Beyond that? Meh. Who cares?” 

And then Mary Beth wrote back and said,

Kids are good. 

All you really have to do to raise them well is:

1.) Everything
2.) Just breathe, and time will carry you across.

And I thought YES! And THAT’S IT, EXACTLY. Because we humans raising other humans must do everything – we must – but we also learn, eventually, to just breathe and that time will carry us across. Both/And. Both Everything and Just Breathing.

As soon as I finished Mary Beth’s email, I went to my less-than-pristine bathroom where I saw the message my eldest wrote on my mirror in my very best lip liner last Mother’s Day. Yes, before the Great Father’s Day Cinnamon Roll Caper. And yes, 7 months ago, in which time I haven’t cleaned my mirror. 

Abby wrote, “Happy Mother’s Day! I love you.” 

Which seems like a Very Important Reminder this Christmas week. As we rush and fret and do All of the Things. Or Some of the Things. Or One of the Things. Or Just Breathe. 

It’s enough, friends. 

It is.

Whether the Things get done or don’t.

It’s enough.

So, from our family to yours, Merry Christmas Eve and Happy Mother’s Day and Happy Father’s Day and everything in between. Here’s wishing you breath and air and life and time,


 photo 2 (73)


Today is Day 9 of 7+ Giveaways!
(Day 8 is still accepting entries: click here.)

I invited the 5 Kids Blog advertisers (see the column to your right) to join me for 7 (and more!) days of giveaways. CHECK BACK for a NEW GIVEAWAY EVERY DAY.

LittleMissPeaCapeandCrownToday, our friend Jenni of Little Miss Pea, a company that specializes in unique gifts that are handmade with careful attention to detail and that little extra touch, is giving away a cape and crown set in the color of the winner’s choice.

“This cape set is so much fun! Your toddler can be a fairy princess, a knight, a wizard, a super hero, or anything he can imagine! A great birthday or Christmas gift. Made with shiny satin on both sides, every set is reversible with two colors. Velcro closure on cape allows for ease of use and safety. Set fits most kids ages 2 to 6.” 

This giveaway is now closed. Congratulations to Malinda, the Little Miss Pea cape and crown winner!

TO ENTER: Leave a comment on this blog post by 11:59pm (Pacific Time) on Thursday, December 26th. One entry per person, please. A winner will be selected using a random number generator and posted on Friday.

This giveaway is open to international participants. International shipping provided by me.


Note: The 5 Kids Blog advertisers provided no additional compensation for these giveaways. Jenni of Little Miss Pea is paying for the cost of the giveaway and U.S. shipping. She paid me for her ad only, and this just seemed like a fun way to work together for your benefit. OK? OK.

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42 responses to “Merry Christmas Eve and Happy Mother’s Day (and Day 9 of 7+ Giveaways)”

  1. This is the first time I’ve been on your blog, and I love it already. I think we should go out to have coffee together. I suspect we are kindred spirits. Please tell me you don’t have time for Pinterest. Blessings to you and your five from me and my six.

  2. Oh eek surgery! Sending prayers your way.

    p.s. I made your fudge recipe. It worked! I mean, I used it and it STILL worked and produced fudgy goodness. I think the earth stopped rotating for just a fraction of a second, it was so stunned. I kept saying “I made fudge!” and driving my family nuts. So thank you. 🙂

  3. I was inspired to make cinnamon rolls too, only I cheated and made the dough in the bread machine. And then I fell asleep before I took the dough out of the bread machine so at 4 am after nursing a toddler back to sleep I came downstairs to find the dough rising OUT of the bread machine and down the sides… like the blob, only with a nice smell. So I sighed, dumped it in a bowl, threw it in the fridge and crawled back to bed only to wake up after an hour to said baby, so we came downstairs and I made coffee and snuggled and then I put on Sesame street and he watched it while I made cinnamon rolls. Merry Christmas.

  4. Your blog is always what I need to read!! (except that the mirror part reminds me that I’m reading your blog instead of cleaning my bathroom, which is what I should be doing). Christmas this year just made me tired and cranky. I woke up today in a much better mood.

  5. Having made it to Christmas night now I just want to collapse in a heap and sleep until March. Since that is out, thanks for the reminder to breath. I will get up in the morning and maybe do a Thing or Two. Or not. We’ll see. But it will be okay.
    I love that Abby’s message is still on your mirror. I mean, she pretty much guaranteed that you can never clean it again, right? Awesome Mother’s Day present.

  6. Love this blog! For everything we did today, my toddler only opened 3 gifts and his stocking, and his favorite thing was the lollipop inside. And the dinosaur socks!

    My toddler would love a cape to run around & pretend in!

    Merry Christmas!

  7. With 4 kids 4 and under – I have be learning to do what I can and leave the rest and not stress! My boys would love a cape and crown! Thanks for all the fun giveaways, Beth!

  8. LOVE the cape! My small fry would too… Once he is no longer lying in agony with coxsackie virus and those stoopid mouth blisters… poor tyke…Not the way he hoped to spend his holiday break from school, although he keeps asking me if this means he can stay home from school so methinks he just does not get it yet…

    Have a very happy xmas!

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