Back in Chicago for a hearing. It's MINUS 29 DEGREES PEOPLE. MINUS. Even PLUS 29 degrees is cold. I have my hotel room up to 74 but the cold air is drafting in by the window and I'm still cold. I am wearing tights and socks and two shirts and a sweater. *** And I am still cold. How do people actually LIVE here? The blessing: we were not delayed in the flight and landed with only mild skidding across the runway sideways as the 40 MPH gusts blew that airplane around like a candy wrapper in a hurricane.
Tomorrow I get to wake up and walk a couple blocks to the courthouse - it's supposed to be a balmy 11 degrees. I think I'll wear shorts.
Meanwhile back at Casa de Next Door, I left the kids a note. Little Stinky had some surgery to remove the girly parts, so I knew Daughter and Son would be back and forth for pills and treats and such. Plus they just run back and forth all the time. Leaving the doors unlocked and the lights on and the place a mess. And they wonder how I know they've been there?
The kids have been asking me what I want for Christmas. I am a believer in presents for Christmas. They don't have to be expensive. In fact, I prefer them not to be. But they should be personal and thoughtful. I am so easy. I love smelly bath gels and funky artsy earrings. I love warm, fuzzy socks. All simple things to get mom. But they keep asking. And Son probably won't manage to put something under the tree again this year anyway. Which is another annoying story, but I digress. SO I left them a note that went something like this:
"What I Want for Christmas, by Mom"
What I want for Christmas is Help and Respect.
CLEAN YOUR ROOMS:
I have invested in expensive furniture and pretty/handsome bedding and decorator pillows for your rooms. You have asked for and helped me decorate your rooms. But the comforters are on the floor, the furniture is never dusted, the rooms are a disaster. I would like you to CLEAN your rooms and respect the time and energy that went into decorating them. Dust your furniture. Make your beds. Keep the junk off the floors. Respect the time and energy that we put into making your room a nice place to be.
CLEAN THE BASEMENT:
We have created what could be a really cool teen hangout in the basement. But there is GARBAGE on the new TV cabinet, garbage under the couches, junk all over the floors. There is no respect for the home theater or the pool table or the new furniture. Clean up the basement. Vacuum the rug and the furniture. Respect the hard earned money I invested in the basement so that you could have a nice place to bring your friends.
CLEAN UP AFTER YOURSELVES:
You are 16 years old. I am a single, working mother. When you make yourselves a sandwich or cook something, clean it up. Throw away the wrappers, wipe up the crumbs, put away the food. Don't leave it out for me to come home after a long day and clean up your messes.
I would like to know that you respect our HOME and you respect the amount of time and energy it takes to make this HOUSE into a HOME. I need your help kids. And I need your respect. That's what I want for Christmas.
Yeah, with Ex moving away, things are going to need to change. So I thought I'd give this a shot. Before the split, they were required to do a lot more chores than they do now. Ex finds it simpler and more efficient to do things himself (he is Felix of the Odd Couple-Mr. NeatNick) and does not require the kids to do simple things like make their lunches. I think kids need chores and responsibility. Which is hard to enforce every other week. The good news - while my parents were here "babysitting" mom said the kids were very proactive at cooking, cleaning, doing trash collection and pitching in. Whew. At least they remember how. Now if they can just do it for MOM!
So yeah between work and kids and The News of the Move, I am having trouble finding Christmas. I am reading lovely posts over at BlogthisMom and the Hulagirl that are helping move me in the right direction....4 days left to find it.
*** edited to add: ha ha I just went back and read this. I'm wearing pants, too, people. Just in case anyone caught this...