My First Black Friday Shopping Trip!

November 29, 2009 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: dc metro moms, Holidays 

Black Friday Shopping     Well, I finally did it.  I went against years of eye rolling and head shaking… and I joined the shoppers in the early morning on Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving.

It was cool!  I’m doing again next year-

in fact, I’m making it a Christmas tradition!!

Read all about it here, at DC Metro Moms…


DC Area: Check Out A GREAT Holiday Bazaar This Weekend

November 12, 2009 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Around DC, Holidays 

Christmas tree It’s beginning to look a lot like… !!

Well, right now it’s been raining for 2 days so it doesn’t look like a lot of anything outside my window.

BUT- THIS WEEKEND is a different story!

My FAVORITE Holiday Bazaar is on Saturday.  It’s the St. Jane de Chantal Holiday Bazaar from 9-6!

This is the Mac-Daddy of all holiday Bazaars, and I kinda consider myself an expert…

I love holiday bazaars and have gone to many.

Note:  My son goes to school here; that being said, this holiday bazaar is just ‘known’ for being great.

They start lining up vendors in JULY!

So here’s the info- Great shopping, great parking, food, chances to win decorated Christmas trees..


Check it out- I start my Christmas shopping here every year and always find great, unique stuff!


The annual St. Jane de Chantal Holiday Bazaar will be held Saturday, November 14, 2009, from 9am-6pm at

St. Jane de Chantal school,
9525 Old Georgetown Road, Bethesda, conveniently located off Beltway exit 36.

Admission is free and there is plenty of off-street parking.
This Holiday Bazaar features over thirty independent vendors selling unique, quality merchandise including original art, personalized items, jewelry, stationery, glass, children’s clothes and much more.

New this year, our Bazaar will feature sihlouette artist Anne Leslie, who will be available to create timeless, handmade portraits. We are also pleased to announce the return of American Plant.

Come check out their gorgeous decorations and shop their boutique!


I’ll see you there!


I Saw Decorated Christmas Trees on Columbus Day

October 13, 2009 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Holidays 

Christmas tree     As I just typed that title I thought of the movie line from The 6th Sense– ‘I see dead people.’

But in a weird way, that is kind of appropriate, in a ‘this could not really be happening’ kind of way-

Yesterday, it did happen.  The day started off like any other, a nice morning, a day off school, a pleasant breeze, the fresh Fall air…

and my son and I were walking through Sears… and he stopped in his tracks…

There, before us, were twinkling lights, Christmas decorations, ornaments and 7,

Yes, 7, Christmas Trees.

 I’m not ready for Christmas yet, repeat: 


Let’s enjoy Halloween, Thanksgiving, my son’s birthday… and then we can celebrate Christmas.


Post Script:  We then went to a Halloween store to pick out a costume for trick-or-treating…



Have You Ever Forgotten Your Mother-In-Law’s Birthday… While Standing In Her Kitchen?

May 19, 2009 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Holidays 

Mother-In-Law\'s Birthday      Or rather, have you remembered it is your Mother-In-Law’s Birthday while standing in her kitchen?  I have… just the other day.  

My Mother-In-Law’s birthday falls on Mother’s Day or just around Mother’s Day every year.  This year we went to the beach for Mother’s Day weekend, so we weren’t around.  And everyone was fine with that…

I even got my Mother-In-Law a birthday/mother’s day present, which I’m not supposed to do- because my husband takes her out to a very nice restaurant every year for her birthday/Mother’s Day. It’s a nice tradition and they both enjoy it!  He is taking her to dinner this week.

So, I tell her I got her a present and that My son and I are bringing it over… I took a GREAT picture of my son and his twin cousins who are all about the same age- you know: an unbelievable picture where everybody has a cute smile on their face, they are all kinda-hugging each other, everyone is looking at the camera and not picking their nose… one of those, great, pictures.  So I blew it up into a 5×7 and framed it-

Nice, huh?

So, we go over to their house, and are having a nice afternoon.  My little guy, me and my mother-in-law- we’re sitting around talking.  And then she asks my son if he wants a piece of cake…

“Sure!  Great!”  

And I’m thinking, ‘Why does she have a fancy little cake out on the counter… what’s the occasion… Is it left over from Mother’s Day?’

And then I look at the calendar- and it’s her birthday!

“Happy Birthday!”  I said very loud, I think because I was so surprised by my lack of tact and awareness/trying to cover up the fact that we had been over there for half an hour and not actually wished her a happy birthday…

So, I went over to my mother-in-law’s house, WITH A PRESENT in hand, forgetting it was her birthday…


Can anyone top that?  No, I didn’t think so…


Thank God my Mother-In-Law has a sense of humor ~



Bethany Beach on Mother’s Day

May 13, 2009 by · 3 Comments
Filed under: Holidays 

    We spent Mother’s Day weekend at Bethany Beach.  It was quiet and peaceful and wonderful.  You know how crowded Bethany Beach gets?  Look at these shots-

To the North-


And to the South-


These were taken Friday afternoon.  Saturday turned out to be beautiful, so there were a few more people on the beach- but that’s it :)

We played on the beach, went out to dinner, visited FunLand in Rehoboth on Saturday afternoon (opening day- it’s open for the season now), played some more and had a great time.

We ‘cut a swath’ through the outlets on the way home on Sunday too!

If you’ve read below, you know that my son woke up bright and early on Monday morning with Strep Throat, but he’s been on antibiotics since Monday morning, feels fine now, and life is back to normal.

And a good weekend was had by all !

On a lighter, navel-gazing note: It doesn’t matter how long you go to the beach-if you go for a month or just a weekend, you still need ‘all the stuff': beach toys, all the beach stuff, etc. etc.



You Know You’re Irish When…

March 17, 2009 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Holidays 

      Happy St. Patrick’s Day Everyone!

And I do mean everyone- since everybody is Irish on St. Patrick’s Day.

I’m not blogging from The Dubliner in Downtown DC;

I used to start every St. Patrick’s Day at The Dubliner, my husband always took off work and we’d ride Metro down.  An old-fashioned Irish pub is a nice place to be at 10am on St. Patrick’s Day… not too many people, nobody is drunk yet, there are a lot of older people in green sweaters, happy to enjoy a pint of Guinness before the 20-something binge-drinking starts.  Ah, the good ol’ days!

I just got this in an email and it’s a good read on this Irish-est of days.

What It Means To Be Irish or Have an Irish Family

1) You will never play professional basketball.

2) You swear very well.

3) At least one of your cousins is a fireman, cop, bar owner, funeral
home owner or holds political office. And you have at least one aunt who is a
nun or uncle who’s a priest.

4) You think you sing very well.

5) You have no idea how to make a long story short!

6) You spent a good portion of your childhood kneeling in prayer.

7) You’re strangely poetic after a few beers.
8) You are, therefore, poetic a lot.

9) Many of your sisters and/or cousins are named Mary, Catherine or
Eileen… and there is at least one member of your family with the full
name of Mary Catherine Eileen.

10) You may not know the words, but that doesn’t stop you from singing.

11) You can’t wait for the other guy to stop talking before you start

12) You’re not nearly as funny as you think you are …but what you lack in talent, you make up for in frequency.

13) You are genetically incapable of keeping a secret.

14) You have Irish Alzheimer’s … you forget every thing but the

15) Your skin’s ability to tan…. not so much.

16) You met your husband/wife/significant
other/accountant/lawyer/landscaper/etc. in a bar/pub.

17) At this very moment, you have at least two relatives who are not
speaking to each other (not fighting, mind you), just
not speaking to each other.

Avoid The Rush… Go Out The Night Before

February 24, 2009 by · 6 Comments
Filed under: Food and Drink, Holidays 

It used to be pretty fun going out on special nights- New Year’s, Valentine’s Day; but as we all know: things change.

I’ve never been a fan of New Year’s Eve anyway, because it can rarely live up to the hype associated with it.


I have now done this for New Year’s AND Valentine’s Day and it works great.

My husband and I now have a tradition of going out on December 30th- there aren’t the crazy crowds, babysitters are more readily available, and service isn’t rushed.

Fast forward to Valentine’s Day this year; we were planning on going out as a family for dinner to one of our favorite family restaurants on Saturday, February 14th… 

then I got to thinking, ‘Everywhere is going to be packed, everybody’s going to be a little rushed’, and I quickly changed our plans-

We all went out to dinner on Friday, the 13th, had a wonderful dinner, the restaurant wasn’t very crowded

and then for Valentine’s Day we ordered chinese.

Moral of the story:  Consider starting this tradition, it’s easier and then ‘ordering in’ the next night is a nice topper!

2 Birthday Parties… I’m Recovering

December 20, 2008 by · 1 Comment
Filed under: Holidays 

On Thursday I had 22 children in my home for my son’s birthday party; We had games, a magician and a pinata. Thursday evening we had both sides of our family over for a family birthday party. Friday morning we put up our Christmas tree, but my son didn’t want to decorate because he wanted to play with his birthday presents. He then went to my parents for a sleep-over…

So last night my husband and I canceled our dinner reservations, stayed home, decorated our tree…

and relaxed,

and loved it.

And most of all, our son had a great birthday.

Note to self: next year I have our Little Guy’s birthday party somewhere besides our home :)

Not Busy Enough? Throw a Birthday Party!

December 14, 2008 by · Leave a Comment
Filed under: Holidays 

Christmas is the 25th, Kwanzaa always starts on the 26th and Hanukkah starts the evening of the 21st this year. So no matter who you are, we’re all basically on the same schedule this year…
except for those of us who as a result of:
poor planning,
or a lack of planning,
missed due dates,
early births,
or just ‘seeing what would happen’… now have a child born this time of year.

I would not trade my son or the day he was born (December 18th) for anything in the world. It is a great honor and pleasure to be his mother….

Now, with that said: candles, candy canes, wreaths, Santa… Plus: balloons, confetti, birthday cakes, ice cream. It’s a lot.

This is a busy time of year for everyone, needless to say. But the hard part for moms with holiday birthdays to plan isn’t the organization part; moms are good at the ‘whole organization thing’.

It’s the COORDINATION and TIME part that makes this hard-
Coordinating when we are celebrating what, when to emphasize what, when we are decorating, when we have the kids party, when we have the family party…

Last year my son came up with the awesome tradition (I thought) of celebrating his birthday, on his birthday (December 18th), and THEN decorating for Christmas AFTER his birthday. We went out the morning of the 19th, got our tree, decorated and had a whole week to get excited for Christmas.

I blogged about this last year on DC Metro Moms and WAS PSYCHED.

Perfect I thought, we’ll always have a sweet, unique Christmas tradition that no decorations go up until the 19th and who cares, because it will be a great reminder of our wondrous Christmas when we brought home our Little Man.

And this is the unique way our family celebrates this season…

There’s just one problem that I’ve just been reminded of:

4-year-olds change their minds… a lot.

My son just asked me a couple of days ago when our tree will be going up. I told him we’ve been over this a bunch of times- the 19th, the morning after his birthday.

And here it comes: He wants to decorate before his birthday this year, he decided.

The only problem – I have at least 20 4-and-5-year-olds coming to our home for a birthday party on the afternoon of the 18th, and both sides of our family coming over for an evening birthday party on the 18th too-
I can’t fit a Christmas tree and all the decorations with an extra 20+ children, plus adults, plus a magician in my house.

I explained this to my Little Man and he’s fine with it. But I’m kicking myself for being almost too concerned about ‘making his birthday special’ that I’m not giving Christmas enough of a build-up.

Solution: next year we’ll have my Little Guy’s birthday party somewhere besides our home (although I love home birthday parties) and we’ll decorate for Christmas BEFORE his birthday…

unless he changes his mind again.

Post Script: I think I need to take this whole birthday thing year by year. And relax. I’m making my son’s birthday special, and that’s what’s important.

At least I’m used to this: my dad’s birthday occasionally falls on Easter, my mom’s birthday sometimes falls on Thanksgiving, my brother’s birthday is the day after Halloween and my mother-in-law’s birthday sometimes is on Mother’s Day.

Enjoy the Holidays and birthdays you are celebrating right now :)

An abbreviated version of this can be read over at DC Metro Moms Blog.

A Festivus Miracle… At the Post Office!

December 9, 2008 by · 2 Comments
Filed under: Holidays 

Ahhh, the post office at holiday time- it’s crowded, cold and s…l…o…w.

Yesterday afternoon my Little Man and I went to the post office to send out our Christmas cards.  They were all addressed and done, but 1 Christmas card we send out goes to our friends in England, so we needed to wait in line for extra postage for that 1 card…

We waited in line which stretched the whole length of the post office.  I heard an older man behind me mutter, “Can you believe they only have 2 people working right now?!”  Another lady in back of me looked like if you locked eyes with her, she might haul off and hit you.  Everyone was ‘busy’ and ‘in a hurry’.

There were no other children in the post office.  People were taking time from work or shopping or cookie-baking or whatever else you do at 3:00 in the afternoon.  And no one was pleased that the line wasn’t moving very quickly.

Then my Little Man started to mosey around the post office and broke into song,

‘Sleigh bells ring, are ya listenin’?

In the lane, snow is glistenin,

A beautiful sight, we’re happy tonight,

Walkin’ in a Winter Wonderland.’

I looked around and everyone was a little calmer.  My soon-to-be 5-year-old glanced around and continued…

‘In the meadow we can build a snow man…’

And the crotchety old lady a few people in front of me started to sway.

‘And pretend that he is Parson Brown…’

And a few people started to smile.

And the line started to move a little faster.  And then it was our turn.  We paid the extra postage and turned around and everyone looked at my Little Man and smiled.  He then, as he is so prone to do, said good-bye  to everyone in line and waved…

And then he locked eyes with that fierce-looking woman behind me.  ‘Watch out’, I thought.  And she smiled at him.

We walked out to our car and my son exclaimed, “Well, that was fun.”

And I thought I heard, as we drove out of sight,

‘Don’t get stressed, Have some fun,

Remember preschool- and you just might’.

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