Sunday, December 31, 2006

All I Wanted for Christmas was....a macaroni necklace?

OK, once I found out there was gonna be a little one in my life, waaaaaaaaaaay back when I wore fashionable clothes and kept very little healthy food of any kind in my kitchen, I had a terror of the inevitable child gift: the macaroni necklace.

I knew, just KNEW, that someday my child, who would of course be more adorable than any OTHER child on the face of the earth because, c'mon, let's face it, it was mine, right?...this child would present to me, wrapped badly in crumpled and torn paper, the ultimate handmade gift of a necklace strung with wobbly pasta, perhaps even painted and glittered. And I, because this is my child and I love it more than anything, would wear this necklace proudly and everywhere. And people would gasp at the adorableness of it, and would compliment my baby's ability to place pasta on a string, and they would be impressed. And furthermore, *I* would be an amazing mom because I wouldn't even CARE that this was (truthfully, just between you and me) not a particularly fashionable piece of jewelry.

And this scared me.

But as soon as the little one came out, I truly did begin to understand that fashion was secondary to mama love (and as the years passed, fashion kinda kept creeping down on the list, and now I think it's lost out there somewhere, and somebody remind me later to make out a poster to find it, hey?). And so I was ready to receive this finely crafted piece.

Eleven and a half years and TWO children later, still waiting. And honestly getting a little dismayed that I may not actually ever GET a macaroni necklace. And worried that this somehow means I have failed as a mom.

The kids *did* get me presents for Christmas. And this year was the first time that they picked them out ALL by themselves. Usually, when we get together with my parents, the kids will sidle up next to them and whisper, "What did we get Mom?" But this year, they were on their own, by my decree. And they did a great job. Mark got me a book, and some Sour Patch Kids, and a really pretty pair of sparkly earrings that he picked out on his own, and that actually were something I would have picked out for myself. Kira picked out an 8" wooden letter from the craft department and colored it herself in Magic Marker, so I could hang it on my bedroom door. This is directly related to the "M" and "K" that the kids have hanging on *their* bedroom doors, that are painted (and in Kira's case, covered with rhinestone jewels). She would have painted mine, but she had to do this in a top-secret fashion, and, being just turned seven, really isn't allowed free access to the paints. So she made do. And it turned out very well. My kids have demonstrated that they know me well, and have quite good taste, really.

But y'know, I'm just not giving up hope on that macaroni necklace. mk

And because I told Ro I would, here's the lovely way I responded to this year's Craft Day at school.

Each year the school volunteer group (of which I am a member as of this year) organizes a holiday craft day for the kids in grades K-5 at school. Last year they painted wooden shingles (and I still have the one Kira gave me hanging on my doorknob). This year they were painting terra cotta plant pots, and then receiving with them a small baggie of dirt and a bulb to plant, with the pot saucer as a lid. I contributed the gift tags that went along with them, printed a hundred or so and cut them all out. Craft Day took place on the Thursday before Christmas.

So, Friday and the last day of vacation came, and the kids brought all the stuff home from school that they'd made all week. Kira lovingly brought her plant pot to me, all proud: "Look what I did!" I admired it (it really was a clever little gift), and then, her little face all lit up, she rabbit-punched me:

"I'm going to give it to DAD!"

But, but! But what about ME?!?! And I am so ashamed to admit that I actually tried to subtly GUILT my little girl into giving me the pot, without ever asking for it. I even brought up the making of the gift tags. But she would not be swayed. It was going to her Dad. Because he hardly ever got any of the things she made. (She did have a point there. But I'm greedy. I want AAAALLLLLL the kid swag.)

Then, THEN she showed me the card that she made in art class. That she decided to keep for herself. But she took pity on her poor mom.

"You can have my gingerbread house, Mom!"

"You mean the one you came home and told me you smashed on the bus ride? Great. Thanks."

And even that. Yesterday when she had her friend over, she piped up: "Can we eat my gingerbread house?"

Kira giveth. And Kira taketh away. mk


Jenny said...

Okay. You need to put a macaroni chain on the 8 inch letter and wear it out. Seriously.

Happy New Year, my friend. You crack me up.

Anonymous said...

I just re-read this post and it's great! Very funny writing.

The Beast Mom said...

That part about the letter on your door is absolutely cool. Your daughter rocks for thinking of that. :) The apple doesn't fall far from the tree, eh?

I just read your giant list of 101. You are one ambitious chica. I don't think I even have it in me to WRITE the list, much less do it. I'm still "thinking" about writing the 100 things list from last year's blog circulation.

I CANNOT believe that THREE deer were after you. You are on the Deer-o-sphere hit list. Be careful out there in the wildnerness you live in.