Erin’s Very 1st Holiday Gift Guide & Giveaway

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Okay folks, the time has come for my very first holiday gift guide and giveaway. I have done product reviews and giveaways in the past but nothing ever like this. This is huge! I have so many awesome things that I can’t wait to share with you. No I wasn’t paid to do any of this. I am doing this because I love all of you and I love the products that I am sharing with you. Yes, some of them I was asked to review and blog about but I am only sharing the ones that I love and would use even if I wasn’t asked to write a review in the past. I am picky about which products I review and I only pick ones that I think will appeal to my readers and their families. After checking out all of these awesome items, make sure that you enter the contest below. There are a few free entries and a ton of other ones that you may need to work for. But it’s worth it. Whoever wins, will get something from every vendor or company on this list! Whether it’s an actual product, a discount code or a code for a freebie. I’m just giving you some ideas on gifts for you family, friends, teachers and anyone else that you give to during Christmas, Hanukkah, birthdays or any other holiday.

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First up is something that is for the adults on my page. Wine glasses! You guys all know by now that I love my wine.  I love drinking out of cute glasses too.  One day I was searching Etsy for teacher gifts and found Kelly, the owner of MADPainterVA. She has been my source of wine glasses for over a year now. I have purchased quite a few glasses for the kids teachers (hey I figure that if they have to teach one of my kids then they must need wine). I have purchased special ones for my friends and I have even ordered a special University of Delaware one for myself.  MADPainterVA has a ton to pick from on her Etsy page, but I have sent Kelly images (like my UD glass) and she just whips it up and within 2-3 weeks its on my doorstep. I also love that they are HUGE glasses, not tiny little sample ones. Here are some pictures of a few that I have ordered from her in the past. Oh and for all of you LuLaRoe lovers she has a glass for you too. MADPainterVA offers a ton of personalized, hand painted glassware, ornaments and more. Check out MADPainterVA now! You can find the perfect gift for almost everyone on your list.  Oh and while typing this up I just noticed that she has Five Nights at Freddy’s ornaments! I might have to go order  a few for the boys now since they are obsessed!

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Next up is Illumibowl, the motion-activated toilet night light.  Yes, I know it sounds funny but trust me it is pretty cool and becoming a pretty popular item.

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I love this product, especially since I live in a house of all boys. The Illumibowl was featured on Shark Tank recently and has become a huge hit. I have a sleepwalker (or a sleep pee’er is that even a word?). He likes to wake up and hit the bathroom in the middle of the night. The problem is, he never hits the bowl. But leaving the light on is a huge pain for the other kids (and my husband hates when lights are left on). So here comes the Illumibowl. You connect it to the side of your toilet and set the color feature (you pick one color or you can have it rotate) and when it senses motion in the bathroom, it turns on. The bowl now glows at night so the wonderful men/boys in your life can aim a little better at 3am. It’s a huge hit and I love their newer model (here’s my review from the last model: Illumibowl Review).  The new model attaches to the bowl a little easier and will stay in place better. Check out their video from their time on Shark Tank.

You can find the Illumibowl at their website Illumibowl.com, Amazon.com, Bed, Bath and Beyond and Walmart. For my wonderful readers, in case you don’t win, you can still get a great deal on the Illumibowl. Click here to order your own and use the discount code IRISHMAMA for a great deal.

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Another product that I have picked for you guys is called Kwik Stix.

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Sean loved these when I reviewed them awhile back (Kwik Stix Review). He loved painting but I hated the mess. But these are different. There’s no water, no paint brushes, just a clean Kwik Stix.  So now there’s no mess and they dry pretty darn quickly.

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Now that I have Owen in the painting stage, I was excited to pull these back out of my craft closet.  He loves them and I enjoy that there’s NO MESS!!! Since I did my last review on Kwik Stix, they have come out with some new products and you can purchase them in Target. I mean I know that we are all there a few times a week (don’t deny it, I run into you guys all of the time). These are a perfect as a stocking stuffer or just for your every day crafts.  Kwik Stix is giving our lucky winner two items.  The winner will receive a 6 pack of Metalix colors and a 6 pack of basic colors.  But remember you can find them online here, or at your local Target.

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One of my favorite things to do around the holidays is decorate. I love the way that my house feels when it’s clean and decorated for Christmas. It makes my house feel like a nice cozy home.

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I always buy garland and wreaths from Target or craft stores but I never have bought a real wreath. Last year I received one from Jen’s Wreaths and I loved it.

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The smell of this wreath was wonderful. It was so pretty and delivered in a wonderful box so it wasn’t smushed at all. You can read my review from last year here (Jen’s Wreaths) She sells wreaths, swags, centerpieces and the most adorable candy cane shaped wreaths too! And they are delivered right to your door in time for the holidays. I just ordered my traditional wreath the other day. I can’t wait until it arrives! My front door looks naked without it.  One lucky winner will receive both items below.  A gorgeous holiday swag as well as the traditional wreath. You can always head on over to her website and order any style today. Feel free to use her current promo code BLACKFRIDAY for 10% off plus free shipping

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When Owen started eating solids I knew that I wanted him to have real food! But I didn’t have time to make my own. Luckily around the time he was ready to eat, Beech-Nut came out with their 100% Natural Baby Food. They had wonderful flavors that weren’t just the gross combos that other baby food companies made. These were actually enjoyable and Owen loved them.  Plus they were so healthy for him. You can read all about their original products on my previous review here (Beech-Nut Review)

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Now Beech-Nut is selling Coldpurée pouches. It’s a new line of products available in select stores around the country.

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Beech-Nut is always innovating with the goal to make parents’ lives easier, so with convenience in mind, Beech-Nut’s nutritious food for babies is now hands-free. They still use the same unique cooking method as their Naturals and Organic jars – which they call the coldpuree method so you know that you are getting the exact same healthy food.  One lucky winner will receive the four pack pictured above! I was tempted to open them up for Owen, since they are perfect snacks for when we are on the go (aka at Target) but don’t worry, I saved them for you guys!

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Last but certainly not least is a new product from Auro Yoga.

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They sell a huge variety of yoga products from mats, to bags, clothing and a variety of other yoga accessories.  Their latest product is their beach and swim towel.

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I received one a few weeks ago but since it’s a little too chilly here in NJ I couldn’t test it out at the pool or the beach. But I did try it out after my showers. I absolutely love the over sized towel.  This will be perfect at the beach for the kids. I can use it to dry off more than one kid or I can set up down on the sand and have two kids sit for their snacks.  It’s huge!  It’s made out of a very suber absorbent microfiber so you will dry off quickly.

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You can find their products over at their website or on Amazon.  Just make sure that you use my discount code 2016ERIN to receive 20% off today!

So are you ready for the giveaway guys. Here’s what one lucky winner will receive:

GOOD LUCK!!!!!

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** Erin the Irish Mama was not compensated for these review, but I did receive free products to test out.  All opinions are my own **

This promotion is in no way sponsored, endorsed or administered by, or associated with Facebook. You understand that you are providing your information to the owner of this Facebook page and not to Facebook.

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Christmas with the Callaways

This post is only 2 months late, oops!  I thought that I posted it back on New Years!

Even though we have an extremely hectic life we still have found some time to squeeze in some fun this holiday season. It’s not always ideal and there may be fights, kicking, hitting and throwing of iPads (note… by the kids not me LOL).

I am so thankful that we had Owen, for a variety of reason.  One of the perks of having another boy is that we were able to experience the live experience of Thomas the Tank Engine.  I really did miss going to Strasburg, PA to see Thomas.  It’s always a wonderful day, we have been there so many times and each time has been a great experience for the boys.  This year was Owen’s first time.  He loved it.  And the older boys had an awesome time as well. I think that they forgot how much that they really enjoyed riding the train, and the gift shop. Of course, they loved the gift shop.  The kids haven’t played with the trains since they discovered the iPad but this year they HAD to buy stuff.  Of course, we gave in.

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We also had a great day picking out our tree. The first few years we used an artificial tree but I really wanted the tradition of going to a tree farm and chopping down a tree. I love it. Joey may disagree since he has to do the dirty work.

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After decorating the house for Christmas, we had a wonderful night celebrating with Ben and the second grade class during their Snowflake Spectacular.  They did an awesome job singing holiday songs!

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One night, my friend Wendi and I took the kids over to Shadybrook Farms in PA to see their awesome Christmas lights display!  Considering that we have 5 WILD and CRAZY kids in the car they did behave pretty well.  Wendi and I came prepared.  She brought presents and treats and I had a scavenger hunt for light displays.  It was an awesome night.

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In the midst of it all I had my 20th High School Reunion.  The St. Mark’s Class off 1995 ROCKS!  An awesome night with great friends!  It really was a wonderful night.

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Finally, on the 24th we had time to go and visit with the best Santa Claus in the world.  He is so sweet and kind and caring.  We have been to him every year for the past  7 years (even though I have a year or two without pictures)

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The kids had a wonderful Christmas.  We got to spend time with our families and it was great.  Despite some minor fights, they did have a great holiday. I just love seeing the smiles on their faces on Christmas morning.  Worth all of the stress and hassle.

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New Year’s Eve

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The only one who could hang with me until midnight!!!!

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 I hope that everyone had a nice and safe Christmas and New Years {and now a happy Groundhogs Day, Valentine’s Day, President’s Day and all of the other holidays that have passed since I originally typed out this email}!

Oh and Ben also celebrated his 8th Birthday recently… I will try and get a post up about that one shortly {hopefully before we hit Memorial Day}. I also have some posts coming on our blizzard, Cub Scouts Pinewood Derby Day, and a few other small ones coming soon. So keep on reading and check in often. I am trying to get all caught up!

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Merry Christmas!

I wanted to wish all of my readers a very Merry Christmas this year.

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Thank you for sticking by my side even though I took a bit of a hiatus in 2015. I hope to be back in 2016 with even more crazy posts.  In the meantime take a look at these awesome pictures that my friend Jen (Photography by Jen Davis) took for me in our backyard.  I don’t know how she manages to capture these awesome pictures. Oh wait, it’s called talent (and my cute, but uncooperative kids).  Thanks again Jen.

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Featured Sponsor: Jen’s Wreaths

Hello everyone! I am having a wonderful time at the beach. So far the weather has been pretty nice! The kids are wearing me out but I am at the beach so I can’t complain!  I know that it’s been pretty hot the past week but let’s talk Christmas!  Yes, I said Christmas!

But I am not talking about presents {yet}.  I am talking about wreaths.   I wanted to send a shout out to my featured sponsor this month: Jen’s Wreaths. You might remember my post about Jen a few months ago. You can read it HERE. This time she is sharing a fun new idea for fundraising, Christmas Wreaths. Now I know you are thinking CHRISTMAS IN JULY? But seriously, it’s not that far away and it’s time to start thinking about these things. If you work at a school, church or another group and you need something new for your fundraising this year, check out Jen’s Wreaths.

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Here’s a little more information about Jen’s Wreaths and their fundraising program.

We currently work with 60 organizations that sell our balsam fir products to raise money, and we work with organizations in the lower 48 states.   We are in the process of revising our program for 2013!  We offer more than just wreaths.  We have balsam fir candy canes, swags, crosses, and multiple sizes of wreaths.  We expect to have the new fundraising packets ready to mail out June 1st, 2013!  Advisors of organizations can request a packet of information from our website and look it over to see if it might be a good fit for their group.  Our fundraiser is unique and has virtually NO RISK.  We do not have a minimum order size and are happy to accommodate even small group sizes.  Our shipping charges are all up front and there are not hidden costs.  We are flexible and willing to customize our program for groups with special needs.  We have great customer service and are always happy to visit one on one via phone.  Our office ramps up for the holiday season starting September 1st and will be fully staffed at that point.

So what do you have to lose, head on over to Jen’s Wreaths and request your “Christmas Wreath Fundraiser” packet today!

And if you are not looking for fundraisers but want to order some Christmas wreaths, make sure that you bookmark her page and check it out as we get closer to the holiday season!

You can also find Jen’s Wreaths over at Facebook / Twitter 

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Thanks again Jen for your sponsorship! We appreciate it!  Remember if you are looking for a place to advertise your business or website, Erin the Irish Mama is a great place!  Head on over to my advertising page and check it out!  I am also going to give away one free large ad spot ” The Full Growler” very shortly! So stay tuned for details.

Happy Christmas in July.

 

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Having Crazy Kids Finally Paid Off…..

I know, I know, that statement right there puts me right at the bottom of the Mom of the Year Award category. But today it is true! 
Over Christmas I was trying to snap off a few pictures of the boys by the Christmas Tree but they were not in the mood at all.  I was only using my iPhone so I wasn’t planning on making this picture a Christmas card or anything but just a fun little photo shoot.  The boys would not look at the camera, they were pulling on three and basically ignoring me. Finally after a few minutes they both gave up and collapsed under the tree! Well I thought nothing of the pictures because they were obviously useless.
Recently I joined a new webpage called MommyHotSpot.com. It’s a great website connecting moms with tons of useful advice, ideas and tricks when in comes to parenting.  They also have a mommy blog network. 
I noticed a competition for funny Christmas pictures and immediately thought of the one of the boys collapsed under the tree and entered it never once thinking that I would win.  Well I found out this week that my photo did in fact take the prize and I won a free massage from Massage Envy.  What an awesome prize.  I am so excited to cash in on this one. My back has been killing me lately and I am going to try and get it done ASAP! 
Here’s a link to the winning entry!
Thanks again to Mommy Hot Spot for hosting the giveaway and if you have not been over to their page check it out now.  
Website: 
Facebook Page: 
Twitter: 
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Thanks a ton!

Back to Life…. Back to Reality

Woo Hoo! It’s back to school day for one of my kids. Thank goodness Ben is off at school this morning. They need a break from each other and honestly I need a little break too.  Sean starts back to school tomorrow. This holiday season went by so fast but was full of all sorts of crazy. We had to deal with Ben’s seizures, MRI and tons of Christmas meltdowns and fights.  But with the return to school comes the return of reality, packing lunches, grocery store trips and back to cleaning my house (that housekeeper that I asked for at Christmas never showed – maybe next week for my birthday). But I enjoy getting back into the routine. I like routine. I need routine. I do not enjoy surprises or getting off schedule. If something unexpected pops up I tend to get a little unhinged. I hate surprise parties (even if they are not for me). For some reason I like to know what is planned, so I know how I am going to adjust and react to it. It’s not that I am a control freak, I think it’s just my anxiety!  I like having a plan and sticking to it. 

So thank you so much for the return of school and our schedules. I feel a little more at ease now!  My husband and Sean are more go with the flow types while Ben and I enjoy the consistency of a routine. Is anyone else out there like me? Do you crave the routine or are you more of a fly by the seat of your pants kind of person?

On another note, I’m doing well with my 1 snap a day. Yes, I know that it’s only been three days but I’m keeping up with my photos, are you? Check out Jen’s 365 challenge over at Photography by Jen Davis or click here for her guest post from yesterday. 

Here’s my day three picture. This is what happens when you go to the kitchen for 10 seconds to pour yourself a glass of water. Your son manages to go into your bag and pull out your make up!

I am not going to have a new blog post every day with the pictures. You can check out all of my pictures over at my new 1 Snap a Day page. I will be posting them on Twitter and Instagram daily with the hashtags #1snapaday and #pbjd! So if you want to follow my pics there, here are the links below.

Instagram: http://instagram.com/erintheirishmama
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/erinmcirish

You can also start following my daily Weight Watcher updates here: http://erintheirishmama.com/p/weight-and-exercise.html

I am getting back to posting my daily updates and weekly weigh ins again. If you want to join me with the Weight Watchers program, feel free to post comments, recipes, tips on my blog or Facebook page. All are greatly appreciated!

Stay tuned tonight for a post on one of my newest sponsors!


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 I’m still sitting at #36 but I noticed when I clicked on the link today I was the featured blog again today. They rotate them often but I have been featured as a top 50 blog twice in as many weeks. 

Keep on clicking!!

Whew! I am glad that this week is over (Part I)

Now I am not trying to sound like the Grinch with my blog title. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely LOVE Christmas and we had a wonderful day but it’s been one heck of a week. I haven’t been able to blog at all this week and I know that I need to play a little game of catch up!

Let me start by saying that I WILL start back up with the Weight Watchers ASAP. I am going to start this coming Monday. I will get back to my daily updates on the Weight Loss Journey page and I will start posting again every Tuesday with my weekly weight loss/gain. I promise!
The past month has been horrible and I have eaten like I am on death row. I have not hit up the grocery store in a few weeks and I am living out of my pantry (which is stocked but not with the healthy stuff).  Right now I am living off of pasta. Which is not good!

 I have no excuses I just have been stressed and I eat when I am stressed. So don’t be discouraged if you are following me along on my Weight Watchers journey. I will be back and I will be starting back from day one. I am going to ignore everything from the past 3 months and start all over. I have also taken about 2 weeks off from the gym and that will be starting back up again soon! I have NOT given up and I will shed these last 15lbs (yes I know that that number was lower last week, but shit this girl gained some weight over the holidays).

Moving along to Christmas. 

Here are some pictures of our trees & stockings.

The tree in the basement where Santa delivers the presents (right next to the toy room) 

The upstairs (and our first real) tree.  This is for decoration so it feels like Christmas in the rest of our house and not just in the basement.  Yes I know I have some lights out. I had two strands where half of the lights didn’t work! Oh well next year I’ll get more lights!


The stockings were hung by the staircase with care

We had a wonderful two days! On Christmas Eve my husband got home early  from work and we had a very non traditional Christmas Eve dinner – popcorn, cheerios and crackers (oh yeah the adults had some shots of Jamison and some beers).  I told you that I didn’t go shopping this month.

Before the boys got their baths and were put in their Christmas PJs we took them outside to sprinkle their reindeer food (aka oatmeal and glitter). The boys had a blast spreading it around out back and up the steps to our house.

After their baths the boys were allowed to open up 3 presents from Mommy and Daddy (a new tradition).  They were so happy and I think the excitement for the next morning grew 1000 times stronger

After the presents we looked outside and realized that it had started to snow! What a Christmas blessing. I know that it was just a little bit of flurries but for some reason snow on Christmas always puts a smile on my face!

We then set out the cookies and milk for Santa and put the boys to bed.

 The kids FINALLY fell asleep around 9pm and Santa arrived shortly before 10pm.

I went to bed around 11pm only to be awoken at 3am by Ben. He wanted to know if he could go downstairs to see if Santa got there yet. I told him no, he was awake and Santa probably had not arrived. I fell back asleep and I have this feeling he went down to check. But all was quiet until around 7am when Sean woke up (which means that the entire house was awake now). It took Mommy and Daddy a few minutes to get ready and get downstairs (seriously let me brush my darn teeth first). The boys waited patiently on the steps until it was time. 

When we gave them the okay they rushed into the room and all I could hear was squealing and laughter and pure excitement. It took a few minutes for them to figure out which pile belonged to which boy but once they did all hell broke loose.  Ben is like me – we like to rip open every present as fast as we can and then move along to the next one. Sean likes to go a bit slower and open every box as he takes the paper off. My husband and I were so happy to see this excitement. It was the first year that both boys were into it and understood the whole Santa / present thing. Yes, they also knew that it was baby Jesus’ birthday but of course at 3&4 it was all about the goods under the tree. 

It took a good half hour to get through everything then it was time to start putting toys together, that’s when the fun ended and the craziness began. The screaming, the crying, the tears. Mommy and Daddy couldn’t put the toys together or find the right batteries fast enough. Next year I might have Santa prep all the gifts with the batteries. Hear that you fat jolly old man – open up the presents, put in the batteries and then wrap them. Okay, you got it? I know that you are somewhere in Tahiti right now sipping on some fruity drink but listen up big guy.

I tried to get the boys to nap (yeah right) before Mom Mom McGarry came up for round 2 of Christmas presents. I think they each had a 45 minute snoozer. Not too bad.  So we started again with gifts (and fighting and yelling). Typical with two boys just a little bit heightened on Christmas Day. But it was a wonderful day capped off with a great tortellini casserole dinner. I posted the recipe a few weeks ago. You can find it here.  Thanks again Maria! 

But the real test for the week was Wednesday morning. Ben’s MRI day. I will save that one for another post! Stay tuned.  Sorry it took way too long to get this blog post done. Hopefully I can write about the MRI tonight after the kids go to bed. 
I hope that you all had a wonderful and safe Christmas! I am sorry if I wasn’t able to reach out and answer all of your emails and texts this past week. I have just been extremely overwhelmed and I promise to be in touch soon! I thank you all for being so wonderful and kind to us – the prayers for Ben have definitely helped! 
PS – I am up to number 40 on the mommy blogs and at number 4 in the Stay at Home category! Keep on clicking. Every day pushes me higher up the list. The higher I get the more peeps who read the blog! Thanks again. 
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My Dream Christmas Wish List

Just one final blog post before Christmas! Just a little something light hearted and fun.
What I would ask for for Christmas if I was rich:
1. A healthy family
2. A brand new Jeep Wrangler Unlimited (or maybe a new Range Rover)
3. A brand new house with 4-5 bedrooms and a very large kitchen
4. A housekeeper
5. A personal trainer
6. A babysitter
7. My own boutique
8. An ocean front beach house in Avalon, NJ
What I am really asking for this Christmas:
1. A healthy family
2. A calm year at work for my husband
3. A million dollars
4. A blog that provides me with some extra funds from advertising
5. An ipad – ooops I just got that as an early Christmas gift!
Merry Christmas to you all! Wishing you and your family a very happy and safe holiday. I hope that you are able to spend the day with the ones you love. Remember like I said in my post last week….
“It came without ribbons! It came without tags!
“It came without packages, boxes or bags!”
And then he puzzled three hours, till his puzzler was sore.
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before!
“Maybe Christmas,” he thought, “doesn’t come from a store.
“Maybe Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!”
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Overwhelmed

So a few weeks ago I was on my blog and Facebook bragging about how all of my Christmas shopping and cards were done. Well I guess I have done shit since then because I just realized I have less than a week until Christmas and I have not wrapped one thing. I have not gone to the grocery store and I have not cleaned my house.
Now we are not having a ton of people over – its just the 4 of us this year with my mom coming up on Christmas Day. So it’s not like I have to cook a huge meal or go crazy with parties but I still need to get stuff done. I have not made one cookie for Santa, I don’t have carrots for Rudolph. I feel like I am just so far behind! And all this time I thought that I was ahead of the game.
I did survive a very hectic week with Ben’s 2nd seizure, the fighting with his medicine, Joey’s birthday, two Christmas shows and two separate pajama days at school. I did get the classmates and teacher presents done on time so I guess that’s a start. I did bake a cake for the hubby and we did celebrate his day. Other than that I feel like I haven’t done too much.  Ben has been so attached to me at bedtime that I have not had the energy or the time to wrap any presents. I know I will be up until 3am on Christmas Eve helping Santa out. I don’t see any other night to get it done. Plus the hubby is not around until Sunday and I haven’t seen him at all except for a quick goodbye at 6:30am almost every morning. See you in 2013 dear.
I know that everyone else is just as overwhelmed. For some reason this year the stress level is higher and my spirit is a little bit lower…. Hoping to get everything done this weekend because next week will be a hectic one. Christmas Eve/Day, Ben’s scan and a week off with the kids (pray for me).
But looking back at our Christmas cards over the years did put a little smile on my face! I hope that you enjoy looking back at the boys as much as I do.
2012 Christmas Card

2011 Christmas Card
2010 Christmas Card
2009 Christmas Card
I can’t find a copy of the card but this is the picture that we used! Snapfish deleted my card and I am too lazy to go dig it out of a storage tote!

2008 Christmas Card
Again, I can’t find a copy of the card but this is the picture that we used! Snapfish deleted my card and I am too lazy to go dig it out of a storage tote!

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Christmas Pageants Galore

So the past two days I have been consumed by my boys Christmas pageants. Let me start by saying that I love these shows. I love when kids cry, I love when they scream “Hi Mom” and I love when some sit there and just pick their noses (or give bunny ears to the kid in front of them – like Ben did today).  Out kids and these shows remind us of the true meaning of Christmas and why it is so important. Just to quote Dr. Seuss from How the Grinch Stole Christmas (which we have watched a few times already this year)
“It came without ribbons!  It came without tags!
“It came without packages, boxes or bags!”
And then he puzzled three hours, till his puzzler was sore.
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before!
“Maybe Christmas,” he thought, “doesn’t come from a store.
“Maybe Christmas…perhaps…means a little bit more!”
The past two days I have witnessed the same Christmas show twice but with two different groups of children. Each day was special and unique and filled my heart with joy. I was happy that for once I wasn’t thinking about Ben’s medical issues (okay I was slightly worried he would have a seizure and fall off the stage). I was thinking how joyous of a day it was, I was thinking about all of the families in CT that won’t get to see their children perform in any Christmas or holiday shows. I was just happy that I was able to watch my boys shine. Happy to see my boys up there giving it their all and having a great old time! I loved (and laughed) at how some of the parents acted with their cameras. It’s just an exciting time. Whether their first show or their last one it’s always amazing. 
Yesterday was Sean’s day. I was a little worried that he wouldn’t stay in his seat but he was WONDERFUL! He sang every song and chatted with his bestie Maddie (who thankfully was seated right behind him). It was precious at times, he sat there with his head in his hands looking bored but he was still singing. I was so proud of my little man.
Today was another great day – Ben’s day! Yes, I was full of nerves that he was going to have a seizure and fall off the stage – but he didn’t! He was awesome. Ben is usually super shy but he sang every song, helped a friend when she lost her halo and was even giving bunny ears to the kid sitting in front of him. I was so proud of my shy guy!
Love the hands in his pockets! 
He wanted to wear a tie and was mad that I tucked it into his sweater because he wanted everyone to see it.  I apologize to my husband for the horrible tie job! Even after I taped my husband showing me how to put on a tie I still got it wrong! But Ben was happy with it. He told me that he just wanted to look sharp!
So I think the past two days may have been a little stressful on mommy but they turned out to be wonderful! The kids have their countdown on to Santa’s arrival and the birth of baby Jesus. I am just thankful that I only have 6 more nights of moving Gary, our elf. 

I have videos from the shows but I am having trouble uploading to YouTube. If I ever get them up on there I will post. 
I know that Joey was sad he had to miss the show but we are so proud of him for all of the hard work that he has put in at work the past few months (and years). He is doing it all for us and I am so happy to have him as my husband (and daddy to our boys).  Yesterday was his birthday and I know that he worked his ass off to get home at a decent hour so he could see the boys. He went in early and came home a little after 8pm. We did get to celebrate with some beer, some presents and of course the Dogfish Head cake that I made just for him!
Happy Birthday Dear! We love you!
Have a great week guys! I know that I still need to do my Weight Watchers post. I have just been so busy and my mind is elsewhere. I haven’t posted daily updates, I haven’t blogged as often and by God I haven’t vacuumed my floor! AHHHHHH I now regret letting the boys put tinsel on the tree this year! Ahhhh tis the season!
PS. I apologize if my posts are scattered and incoherent these days but that’s where I’m at lately. I think that after I find out what is going on with Ben I will hopefully be back to myself – horrible grammar and all. 
Love ya all!
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