things that don’t go together

A weekend in a hotel for the Hollywood Vibe Dance Convention and Competition and YOU have to study and take the online portion of your Neonatal Resuscitation Program renewal test. Doesn’t that sound like a workable thing? Oh, I forgot, you are bringing along your 12 year old boy because your darling husband is working through the weekend. You know, the sweet boy of yours with sensory processing issues? Don’t forget that your grandgirl, who also dances, will be there for part of the weekend too.

No! YOU thought this would be totally easy and doable.

Of course you did. Until you got there at the hotel…where the dance convention is being held…crowded with lots of other families from lots of other dance studios there…with lots and lots of very excited kids because OMG!!! Kent Boyd is here too!!!! A lot of dance moms were overly excited too. Still, you imagine this will be doable. The kids will be in dance classes from 7:30 AM until well into the afternoon and then they dance competitively through the night until around midnight all weekend long. You’ll have time for sure you tell yourself.


Did you forget the son you brought along?

But there’s a pool. He can swim. He has video games. He can keep himself entertained while you are studying and logging on to take that 9 part test. He’s a good boy. Your husband will be picking him up Saturday afternoon. You end up repeating that last sentence over and over again because he is a 12 year old boy and the last thing he wants to do is entertain himself. Your husband will be picking him up Saturday afternoon…

Did I forget to tell you that there is a hockey tournament happening here too and there are all kinds of hockey teams here with hockey players the same ages as all those dancers? Oh, and with hockey teams come hockey parents. Hockey parents who are more than okay with letting their kids play hockey IN THE HOTEL ROOM NEXT TO YOURS in the evening…until you asked them not to because it sounded like someone was being murdered in the next room which distracted you from studying and REALLY stressed out your 12 year old…the one with sensory processing issues. Apparently hockey dad didn’t think this was a problem until you told him that you thought that it might be…so he sends the kids out into the hall to play hockey. Yes. Because apparently on every floor there are kids playing hockey. They are also playing hockey in the hotel lobby too while their parents are doing celebratory shots Saturday night because their kids won the tourney.

YEAH Junior Kings!!!

Did I forget to tell you that the Internet connection is very spotty? The Internet connection you have to pay for because of course this hotel isn’t going to offer complimentary wi-fi to their guests.

So the connection keeps dropping while you are taking your test. There are hockey games, loud hockey games happening everywhere. Your son wants to go back to the pool an hour after he decided that he was tired of swimming but can’t possibly wear the swim trunks he wore because he wore them and they are wet. Any parent with a kid on the Spectrum gets that. If you don’t get that all I can say is, I’m sorry. Your grandgirl is REALLY upset because she can’t go swimming because her day is filled with dance classes and dance competition. You’re very thankful that your dancer is old enough to get herself to and from her dance classes but there are still the dances she is dancing in…and the grandgirl is dancing in. What kind of dance mom/mima would you be if you didn’t watch these kids dance?

You know what? None of this mixes well together at all.




So the next time you find yourself in hotel with your kids for a dance convention and there are also lots of hockey teams there too with hockey kids and hockey parents and you have work you must do for work that requires Internet access DON’T DO IT!!!

Just don’t.

Dance convention and competition is enough. It really is.

I know that my dancers think so. Hang in there girls…only five more hours to go then we go home.


Excuse me, I have to get back to trying to take my test before the wi-fi cuts out again.


taken down, packed up, like a boss

It’s official. The kids are back to school…hurray, hurray, hurray. The final, frenzied dance competition season is just about to begin. The Rockefeller Christmas Tree is officially down and being milled and readied for “green lumber” for Habitat for Humanity.And, The Big Top Christmas Crazy is down and packed away for another year. Yes, including the Big Tree…unlike last year, when it stayed up until the beginning of March because me have elves to help pack this holiday crazy up and put away?

Oh honey, please! I have help putting this all away like I have help putting it all up. They are clowns, not elves, living here under the Big Top.

So with a burst of energy and the desire to beat my personal best with my new Fitbit, I got all of it, including the big tree, packed up in one afternoon.

Like a boss!

Oh and I logged over 20,000 steps.

Again, like a boss!

Meanwhile, poor Zelda is mourning the fact that I packed away all of her fabulous toys. I forgot how much kitty cats love the Christmas crazy.


letting my heart be light

Won’t lie. Since Thanksgiving, and all of it’s feelings, up until now, the holidays have pretty much sucked.

It has.

It could be worse. So much worse. Still the fact remains that December has mostly been not much fun at all for me. Of course that does wonders for one’s mood. But one afternoon while sipping some tea from a mug from a Christmas past, I was gently reminded. Easier said than done this letting my heart be light, I know. Still I was going to try doing my best to focus on the excitement of my preteen aged son who desperately still wants to believe in Santa, the joy of receiving holiday cards from family and friends (few though they may be) and the excitement of children ready to sing their little hearts out at their school’s holiday concert…

Hazel’s very first school concert! And while she seemed to be looking everywhere for her family, I tried my best to get a good shot of her.

Easier said than done if people in front of us insist on standing through most of the concert.


This letting my heart be light is harder than it looks what with views like these. I get y’all want to see your darling child because Hazel’s family wants to see her just as much as you two. But it’s okay. No one behind you two really wants to see anything but the back of your heads.

I literally counted to ten because it’s the holidays, I’m trying to let my heart be light, it’s Hollie’s birthday and this is Hazel’s (and some 300 other students) moment. So finally I got up, walked to the front of the multi-purpose room, waved to Hazel and got this shot.

Seriously adorable reindeer, aren’t they?

They are.

Having got the shot, I quickly moved back to my seat in the way back and listened to the rest of the concert…what I could hear because EVERYBODY needed to listen to this lady’s LOUD running commentary of all the shopping she has left to do, her grown children’s adventures and woes, how she just can’t shake this smoker’s cough bronchitis and the fact that she couldn’t hear those kids singing.

Letting my heart be light…letting my heart be light…letting my heart be light…

I’m trying. I swear I am really trying.


play it again: Santa did you know?

Originally published December 17, 2009. Oh and Santa did you know that he still believes even if his recent visit with you was much too short with barely enough time for the $10 4×6 portrait and certainly not enough time for him to explain why he missed you last year or to get a “selfie with Santa” which he thought would be really cool to get. At Bass Pro Shop and Vintage Faire Mall, Santa I’m sorry to say that you disappointed Daniel a lot. Hopefully at Dell Osso Farms your visit will be much more fun. Just saying…

Santa did you know that when you saw Daniel at school this afternoon that you would see him again just an hour later?

Santa did you know that Daniel and I would get to the mall before you?

Santa did you know that we would be first in line to see you at the mall?

Santa did you know that you looked just a little bit different? It’s amazing what one hour can do to one’s appearance.

Santa did you know that your helpers at the mall are freaking rude?

Santa did you know it is not permitted for a parent to take more than one picture of you with their child with their own camera even if they are buying the $30 package that is offered?

Santa did you know that my picture was better than the one taken by your helper?

photo by Santa’s mall helpers

photo by Daniel’s mom

Santa did you know that Daniel thinks you are amazing?

Santa did you know I picked up that one thing that Daniel wants more than anything ever?

You’re welcome, Santa.


Everyone and everything is missing Daniel here under the Big Top.

Even his bed, covered with his bedtime friends…yes, he sleeps with ALL of them…seems so forlorn.

I’m being pitiful, I know. This isn’t the first time I have sent a kid of mine off to science camp. I missed them all too…very much. Yes, I just wrote that for them because they do read this blog regularly. But yes, I did miss them all a lot when they were away. But I was certain that they were just fine…having fun…probably not missing me at all.

And yes, I just recently put Daniel on a plane alone to spend a week with his sister in LA as well as sent him a few times to spend time with his Auntie Toni in Capitola. But those were different. He was with family. He was guaranteed as many hugs and kisses as he needed anytime. He was with people who loved him because of his little quirks whether we understand them or not.

This time is different.


Of course the school’s attendance office calling the other day to inform me that my son was absent from school didn’t help. Not at all. I mean, yes, he was absent from school because he was with the rest of his fifth grade class, some of the fifth grade teachers and his school principal at science camp. Thank you for raising my blood pressure just a little and making me want to call the camp to make sure my child was okay and there at science camp. That’s exactly what I needed.

I didn’t call.

We won’t talk about how hard it was for me not to call.

He’s fine.

He’s having fun.

He’s coming home tomorrow.

He’ll probably be so much more grown up too…just like his sisters were.

NaPhoPoMo day 7