Category Archives: Holidays

The Tiny Terror of 1st Grade

Seems like I’m having to write a number of emails to the counselor of the elementary school my twins attend.

Here’s the latest one:

(*”Nellie’s” name has been changed and is not her real one.)

Hi Mrs. S,

I’m pretty steamed about this.

For awhile there, I thought we were doing pretty well with the “Nellie”* situation, Halle even received an invite to “Nellie’s” birthday party!

But today Halle informed me that “Nellie has reminded her once AGAIN (the last time was a few months ago) that she intends to travel to our apartment, break in and break all of Halle’s Dora the Explorer DVDs and the DVDs of any other show that “Nellie” thinks are “for babies”. (and yes, I’ve told Halle how improbable it is that “Nellie” could actually carry out such a thing, but Halle is afraid, nonetheless.)

Halle also has been letting me know on an almost weekly basis for the past month that “Nellie” has been telling her that The Tooth Fairy and Santa Claus and Easter Bunny aren’t real, that it’s the mom that puts out all the presents and lies about it to the kids.

I told Halle to just tell “Nellie” to stop trying to ruin her fun, but “Nellie” is not so easily dissuaded. Since Halle has done her best to deal with this situation on her own, and the situation has once again devolved into “Nellie” threatening Halle, I’m now escalating it to you.

Look, I don’t know who ruined a big part of the fun of childhood for “Nellie, but that does not give her the right to try and undermine what I tell my kids.

I’ve done my best to circle around the issue because I do not want to lie to Halle if she ever, of her own volition, asks me if those characters are real or not, but I do not count this as Halle excercising her agency, but being coerced by peer pressure/bullying.

And I really resent being constantly put in this position!

I’ve mentioned it to you before and I’ll say it again – someone should seriously look into “Nellie’s” homelife. It seems like she’s having such a miserable experience of childhood that she’s acting out by trying to make other children miserable by crushing any innocent happy enjoyment of childhood experiences for them. “Nellie” is obviously not dealing too well with something in her life and is taking it out on Halle. Some kind of intervention is needed for “Nellie”. Is it really appropriate for a threat-making child like this who so resents others’ happiness to be placed in a class without additional supervision?

I would prefer to avoid confronting “Nellie’s” parents, or having to tell Halle that “Nellie” is dealing with unresolved emotional/mental issues, but this child does not have the right to ruin things for Halle, Zanna, my husband and I, the twins’ grandparents (all five of them), 14 uncles/aunts, 1 godmother, and 1 grand-aunt, and a number of older cousins (we’re not counting the Japanese grandaunts/granduncles).

The entire family is pretty upset by this! This will spoil a lot of the fun of family holidays. I even have a friend that sometimes calls the girls up pretending to be one of the characters, and my brother D. calls up all his nieces pretending to be Santa Claus every year!

I would really like for this to be substantially resolved before March 21st, which is the RSVP date for “Nellie’s” birthday party.

Short notice, I know, but the repeated threat was made today.

Like I said, I, and many others in my family are pretty steamed by this situation.

I appreciate your taking the time to read all of this. I know that you will give it the time and attention it needs so that my children are not further traumatized by this unhappy child and that “Nellie” can get the help and support she obviously is in desperate need of.

Lara N



Vashti gets the short end of the stick on #Purim


This weekend we’ve been celebrating the Jewish holiday of Purim.

Part costume party, part holy day, Purim commemorates the time way back when some nasty bad guy decided to decimate the entirety of Jews living in the land. (as nasty bad guys are prone to doing)

In a plot twist worthy of Disney, a brave young girl (Esther – aka Hadassah) braves the odds,  becomes Queen, and with her faithful companion Mordecai (her uncle), she turns the tables on the wicked Haman (boo!) and the Jews are safe once again until the next baddie takes a crack at ’em.  Oh yeah, somewhere in there is Esther’s tool of a husband – King Ahasureus (aka Xerxes).

But before sweet, virginal Esther happened upon the scene to turn the King’s head, there was Vashti, a beautiful Queen.

That is, until her husband demanded that she parade around in front of his buddies at his drunken stag party so that he and his homies could have a good gawk at her beauty.

Vashti, like any confident, self-respecting woman, of course is turned off by the notion that she – the QUEEN – is to be shown off and objectified in front of drunken partygoers – by her HUSBAND, of all people, so she respectfully declines the ‘honor’.

The drunken King flies into a rage and divorces her and has her cast out of the palace. Right after that he’s ‘testing out’ all the virgins in the land until he finds the most biddable one – Esther.

Yeah, hooray for Esther saving the Jews because of the mess her foolish husband got them into by pandering to the overblown ego of his cruel advisor.


But what really fries my turkey bacon is that now and forevermore, every Jew on the planet is loudly proclaiming (in front of their impressionable young daughters, sisters, female children of whatever relation) that Vashti was a bee-yotch of the highest order for not agreeing to parade around in front of drunkards to be treated as though her only worth is her physical looks.  How dare she say anything against the disrespect of her husband toward her!

“Oy Vey!” we say, shaking our heads in disgust at her “stupidity”, when we should all really be on our feet cheering “You go, girl!”

Because the dream of every parent is for their daughter to grow up someday and be paraded in front of cat-calling drunks who only view her as being good for one thing – being pretty.

So why the heck are we wasting so much time, money and energy on getting more girls interested in S.T.E.M. (Science, Tech, Engineering & Math)?

God was the one foolish enough to put a functioning brain inside females, but we humans know better than God Almighty, am I right, or am I right?

So obviously the lesson to be learned from Vashti on Purim is that the highest a woman can aspire to is being objectified by drunks, with her own husband (such a good catch!) at the head of the slavering pack.

Oy flipping Vey!



The Egg Hunt That Would Not End


Remember when all you other mommies out there gave birth? It was so traumatic and painful that after it was over, your mind sorta blurred the experience in your memories so you’d be willing to have another child after that one.

That’s what must have happened to me after last year’s Easter Egg Hunt.

Our usually family shuns public egg hunts, as lately there’ve been a plethora of stories in the news of thug parents bullying other children, or encouraging their own offspring to physically overpower other kids just for the sake of a stupid plastic egg and trinket probably worth all of 10 cents!

So we have the home version.  I buy a bag of plastic eggs at the dollar store for $1, and put 1 jellybean in each. (We don’t give a lot of candy to our kids. Yes they get a basket, but it’s modestly sized and with small gifts and minimal candy.) Sometimes I’ll put in a chocolate chip, or a mini-marshmallow, or a slip of paper with a number for a prize.  Anyhoo, the twins are mighty happy with what they get.

The problem is that Every.  Fricken.  Year.  there is ALWAYS at least one or two eggs that we cannot find.

And every year, I swear that next year, assuming we even have a Hunt at all, we will carefully write down the location of every hidden egg.

And we forgot to do that again this year.

So there we were, two kindergartners, me, my husband and my mother looking all over the place for the last egg.  Because wouldn’t you just know it – it was one with a special candy treat in it.  I couldn’t just swap it for another jellybean – this was an organic 100% all-fruit roll-up.  And I didn’t have another one handy.

Finally, after 40 minutes of dedicated searching just for that one egg, we threw in the towel and tried to console the child whose egg it would have been (they’re twins, they’ve got to have the same amount or it’s war.).

Eventually, when my stress-hazed mind cleared a bit, I idly asked my husband if he was SURE that he hadn’t hidden any eggs in the off-limits zone that included the toybox.

I swear I could have cheefully throttled him when he got a guilty-shocked look on his face.  Not a jury in the land would have convicted me.

Sure enough, we found the last egg, the child rejoiced, and the rest of us adults collapsed in exhaustion.

Next time, we are going to write down the locations of every egg we hide.

Next time, we are going to write down the locations of every egg we hide.

Next time, we are going to write down the locations of every egg we hide.

Next time, we are going to write down the locations of every egg we hide.

Next time, we are going to write down the locations of every egg we hide.

Next time, we are going to write down the locations of every egg we hide.

Next time, we are going to write down the locations of every egg we hide.

Next time, we are going to write down the locations of every egg we hide.

Happy Easter! Happy Passover! Happy Spring Equinox!


The Twins are 5! – A #CadburyHighTea Mommy/Daughter Event!

The twins are now 5 yrs old, and I have survived throwing my first twin birthday party.

Each girl got to choose her besties for her half of the guest list (and that’s when we found out that summer vaycay is perhaps not the best time to throw a B-day party, as many of their would-be guests had gone to Other Lands for the summer), and thankfully, enough people had RSVP’d.

We pulled out all the stops:

A glitter tattoo station, TWO home-made cakes (Max & Ruby’s Angel Surprise Cake w/Raspberry Fluff Frosting and Stars) – one for each twin,


Thanks to the VERY nice folks at My Blog Spark, Cadbury(tm) & Blue Bunny Ice Cream(tm), we had supplies for  a ‘High Tea’ Mommy/Daughter Party!  We had several flavors of Cadbury(tm) Chocolate-covered Blue Bunny(tm) Ice-Cream Bars, fancy dress-up hats and real porcelain teacups w/saucers for each guest!


I had the table filled with 4 kinds of tea sandwiches  and I had cut the crusts off so the sandwiches would be extra dainty, and plenty of hors d’oeuvres for everyone – including plenty of vegetarian options, since one family who RSVP’d was vegetarian.

The girls had a lot of fun sipping their beverages from the teacups, eating their dainty tea sandwiches and wearing the fancy hats.

And then after the more nutritious foodstuffs were consumed, it was time for the cake and ice cream!

Everyone loved the cakes (thank goodness!) and the ice-cream bars were so yummy!  The timing was pretty good too, as July is National Ice Cream Month!

I’m a fan of Cadbury(tm) Chocolate – they’re like the equivalent of Hershey’s(tm) in the UK (although I think Cadbury tastes better.) and everyone got their choice of Vanilla Chocolate, Double Chocolate, Caramellol and Chocolate Almond, along with the cake.

The girls enjoyed the ice cream so much they even “clinked” their bars together in a toast!

And each guest got as many glitter tattoos as they wanted!

And after the party each guest received a goody bag with a very nice tutu, tiara, Japanese snacks, Mott’s Fruit Snacks, and a coupon for $1 off Cadbury Choc. covered Blue Bunny Ice-cream Bars, and we wrapped up the teacups and saucers for each guest and they got to take those and the fancy party hats home, too.

And, as per modern tradition, we waited until any guests had departed before opening the prezzies.

So the girls and their guests had a wonderful time, plenty of food got eaten, and somehow I survived.

And thankfully the girls were happy to help me write all the Thank-You cards for the presents they received.  We even got those mailed out within a week of the party – a new record for us!


*I received 4 boxes of Cadbury(tm) Chocolate covered Blue Bunny(tm) Ice-Cream Bars:

* Cadbury(TM) Ice Cream Bars by Blue Bunny®-Blue Bunny® Ice Cream teamed up with Cadbury® chocolate to bring you and your family the best new icecream bars this summer. Cadbury(TM) Ice Cream Bars start with creamy Blue Bunny® ice cream and then are dipped in thick, rich, Cadbury® milk chocolaty coating! Cadbury(TM) Ice Cream Bars are just the right size and with eight in a box your whole family can enjoy them!

* Cadbury(TM) Caramello(TM): Creamy Blue Bunny® vanilla ice cream is swirled with caramel sauce and dipped in rich, creamy Cadbury milk chocolaty coating.
* Cadbury(TM) Double Chocolate: Creamy Blue Bunny® chocolate ice cream is dipped in thick, rich Cadbury milk chocolaty coating.
* Cadbury(TM) Vanilla Chocolate: Creamy Blue Bunny ® vanilla ice cream is dipped in thick, rich Cadbury milk chocolaty coating.
* Cadbury(TM) Chocolate Almond: Creamy Blue Bunny® vanilla ice cream dipped in thick, rich Cadbury milk chocolaty coating with almond pieces.

as well as teacups, saucers, fancy party hats and $1 off coupons.  I received these items via My Blog Spark for the purpose of trying out the Ice-Cream Bars with our party guests and writing up our ‘High Tea’ party experience.  The opinions expressed above are in no way influenced, they are my honest views and no monetary compensation was received.

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