So thanks to S for sending me this email. It was so great, but I had to add a few of my own thoughts.
I've been a good mom all year. I've fed, cleaned and cuddled my children on demand, visited the doctor's office more than my doctor and sold sixty-two cases of candy bars to raise money to plant a shade tree onthe school playground. I was hoping you could spread my list out over several Christmases, since I had to write this letter with my son's redCrayon, on the back of a receipt in the laundry room between cycles, and who knows when I'll find any more free time in the next 18 years. Here are my Christmas wishes:
(Since I have 3 kids, I think I am living my life 3 years at a time. So in 10 years I will actually 30 years older. I already feel it.)
* I'd like a pair of legs that don't ache (in any color, except purple,which I already have) and arms that don't hurt or flap in the breeze,but are strong enough to pull my screaming child out of the candy aisle in the grocery store.
(Okay-so my little confession is that I feel I have been given a little gift when I see another mom in the candy aisle wrestling their kid. There is comfort in numbers. I also like to check the insides of other people's cars for french fries/stickers/broken toys/socks. Ours is gross, but I have found that most people with kids live out of theirs, too. We were actually loading up with a friend the other day, and she asked me-with terror in her voice, "You are going to let them eat ice cream in the car?" Where else would they eat? At a table? Weird.)
* I'd also like a waist, since I lost mine somewhere in the seventh month of my last pregnancy.
crickets. chirp, chirp.
*If you're hauling big ticket items this year I'd like fingerprint resistant windows and a radio that only plays adult music, a television that doesn't broadcast any programs containing talking animals, and a refrigerator with a secret compartment behind the crisper where I canhide to talk on the phone.
(I have the sweetest story about fingerprint windows. When Parker was barely able to walk we took him to see his great-grandmother in Jonesboro. He did what every kid does-tried to eat the glass. When we went back to visit at Easter, granny told us that she had treasured those little marks, and had cried when his aunt cleaned them away. I haven't been able to look at those precious little smears the same since. I wish I had a good story for the reason there is dust under the beds.)
*On the practical side, I could use a talking doll that says, 'Yes,Mommy' to boost my parental confidence, along with two kids who don't fight and three pairs of jeans that will zip all the way up without theuse of power tools.
(I am personally against a talking doll. I just want one that smiles and hugs. We got plenty of talking round here!)
*I could also use a recording of Tibetan monks chanting 'Don't eat inthe Living room' and 'Take your hands off your brother,' because my voice seems to be just out of my children's hearing range and can onlybe heard by the dog. If it's too late to find any of these products, I'd settle for enough time to brush my teeth and comb my hair in the same morning, or theluxury of eating food warmer than room temperature without it being served in a Styrofoam container.
(Seriously-if I had a quarter for everytime I say, "Please find something to play where no one is hurt or sad." And then after I tell Brad that I have to turn right around and say it to the kids. Exhausting!)
*If you don't mind, I could also use a few Christmas miracles to brighten the holiday season. Would it be too much trouble to declare ketchup a vegetable? It will clear my conscience immensely. It would behelpful if you could coerce my children to help around the house without demanding payment as if they were the bosses of an organized crimefamily.
(I subscribe to the out of sight theory. That's why I can sit here in peace while the boys are rope-swinging to get from their door to their beds. And, yes, it can be that bad. Sorry, Mom.)
Well, Santa, the buzzer on the dryer is calling and my son saw my feet under the laundry room door. I think he wants his crayon back. Have a safe trip and remember to leave your wet boots by the door and come in and dry off so you don't catch cold. Help yourself to cookies on the table but don't eat too many or leave crumbs on the carpet.
(Well, ya got me here....no laundry has been touched today.)
P.S. One more thing...you can cancel all my requests if you can keep my children young enough to believe in Santa.