Another stressed-out Christmas carol

So last year about this time, I was doing the Writing 101 challenge and the prompt was fallacy. I wrote a stressed-out-Mom version of “Jingle Bells,” which pretty accurately reflected my state of mind for the duration of the holiday season last year.

Actually, it’s a pretty accurate reflection of my state of mind right now, too.

In a fit of inspiration this morning, I heard the words to another stressed-out-Mom carol, and the following was born:

It’s the Most Burdensome Time of the Year

It’s the most burdensome time of the year!
With the holiday shopping
And temperatures dropping, we’re living in fear,
It’s the most burdensome time of the year.

It’s the stress-stressfullest season of all.
With the social engagements and concert arrangements
I just want to bawl!
It’s the stress-stressfullest season of all…

Oh, the kitchen is smokin’
And my budget’s broken,
I think I’m becoming a loon.
Will the pipes keep on freezing,
The kids keep on sneezing,
Or will they be throwing up soon?

It’s the most burdensome time of the year!
The noise is astonishing,
With carols admonishing be of good cheer,
It’s the most burdensome time of the year!

Oh, the kitchen is smokin’
And my budget’s broken,
I think I’m becoming a loon.
Will the pipes keep on freezing,
The kids keep on sneezing,
Or will they be throwing up soon?

It’s the most burdensome time of the year!
The noise is astonishing,
With carols admonishing be of good cheer,
It’s the most burdensome time,
Yes, the most burdensome time,
Oh, the most burdensome time
Of the year!

I had quite a lot of fun with this, and I know several others who like to put their own take on Christmas carols around this time of year. I’m thinking about making it an annual tradition!

What about you – are you ready for Christmas? What have you got planned?

(c) 2016. All rights reserved.

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You’re only fourteen once

It’s Miss Tadpole’s birthday today, and she is fourteen. It’s hard to believe that – it seems like just yesterday when we met.

Seymour and I had decided to take the kids bowling. We thought introductions would be less pressure that way; they arrived first, and Bubbles and I arrived a few minutes later. They invited us to bowl with them and we accepted. We had a blast together, and afterward, she invited us to have supper with them.

Completely her idea.

I’ve been thinking more and more about those early days lately. They seem so long ago, and yet…not. I swear it was just yesterday that she walked up to me, tugged on my shirt, and said, “My trouble name is Tadpole Mary Kauffman.”*

And if I’d have smiled any bigger, I think my face would have broken.

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So have a happy birthday, Miss Tadpole – you’re only fourteen once. Before you – and we – know it, you’ll be fourteen no longer.

*name changed to protect the silly

(c) 2016. All rights reserved.

Frozen to the Core

IMG_20140305_084531It’s the most wonderful time of the year…

A storm rages outside my window. It’s dark, and the freezing mix makes it hard to see. Amy sounds tinny, and far away, and not at all the way I remember her in this song. In my memory, she is warm and welcoming, close enough to touch yet larger than life.

Now, though, she is tiny. A tiny woman singing a tiny song through a tin can phone.

I’m alone, and lonely, and the darkness doesn’t help.

It’s the hap-happiest season of all…

The darkness wraps itself around me, but it does nothing to ward off the chill, cannot stop it from settling in my bones, from freezing my marrow. I freeze all the way to my core, and not even my expensive down coat with its heat-reflecting interior can warm me.

I’m alone, and lonely, and the darkness doesn’t help.

img_20160107_082108It’s the most wonderful time…

I crank the heater up to eleven and then, because I can’t hear her over the road noise and the heater, I turn Amy up, too. Only it’s not Amy singing anymore, it’s Josh, and Bing, and their once-silken voices now sound raspy and grating, so I turn the radio back down. The blast of hot air from my car’s dashboard vents sears my eyes and chaps my skin, but it can’t warm my soul, and the bright Christmas tunes can’t dispel the gloom.

I’m alone, and lonely, and the darkness doesn’t help.

Oh, the most wonderful time…of the year!

(c) 2016. All rights reserved.

I’m too *fill in the blank* for this!

It’s hard to believe it’s been almost a year since I posted my stressed-out-Mom version of “Jingle Bells,” but it’s true. It’s that time of year again, and just like this time last year, I’m feeling the blues. The holiday stress began in earnest with Thanksgiving and trying to squeeze in trips to family, trips to friends, and trips to the store on Black Friday (not for the deals, but because we actually needed things) without going bonkers. This week I’ve got two Christmas concerts, church for the kids, a basketball game, a house to decorate, family pictures to take, and 20 dozen cookies to bake before Saturday.

It’s gonna be a crazy…