Holiday Bucket Lists: The Untold Story

It's that time of year again, when we make our holiday lists and check them twice:

Yeah, right. Allow me to share with you what a holiday bucket/to do list looks like in real life.

1. Pinterest version: Visit Santa.

Real life Lindquist version: Force your "mama's girl" to sit on a stranger's lap.

2. Pinterest version: Decorate your tree with hand-made ornaments.

Real life Lindquist version: Scream hysterically when the Christmas tree falls on your young daughters and probably scars them (and you) for life.

3. Pinterest version: Remember this year forever with holiday portraits.

Real life Lindquist version: Push your luck partaking in an unwanted photoshoot with kids under the age of 5.

4. Pinterest version: Bring home the bargains on Black Friday.

Real life Lindquist version: Have your joy zapped by a retail worker who is pissed that your Christmas shopping is standing between her and a 10 minute lunch break.

5. Pinterest version: Sip hot cocoa by the fireplace.

Real life Lindquist version: Gain all your holiday weight in one sitting.

6. Pinterest version: String up lights to make the neighborhood glow.

Real life Lindquist version: Laugh/cry when your husband tells you to check back in a half hour to see if he's fallen off the roof.

7. Pinterest version: Attend an ugly sweater party.

Real life Lindquist version: Allow your husband to wear something you treasured in the 5th grade all in the name of winning a contest at work.

8. . Pinterest version: Make a gingerbread house.

Real life Lindquist version: Throw away the gingerbread house craft that's too ugly even for a mother to love.

9. Pinterest version: Involve family pets in your Christmas celebrations.

Real life Lindquist version: Torture your dog with jingly bells.

10. Pinterest version: Read Christmas letters from family and friends.

Real life Lindquist version: Become saddened by the realization the people whose last names end in S haven't read this chart:

Merry Christmas and Happy New Years from the Lindquistes' :)

What's on your holiday bucket list?

23 Things about Gabby Grace

1. First thing is first. You are still my little mama's girl. I wrote about you being a Stage 5 clinger awhile ago and am happy to report nothing has changed. You seek me out constantly and I love you for it...except for when I'm trying to help Faith brush her teeth cause mommy only has so many arms. But overall, it feels so good to be "thee person" that you prefer above anyone else.

2. That said you love your dada too. Dada is your favorite word for sure. And nobody gets you to giggle like he does. When he blows on your belly, tickles your ticklespots or does on of his many bodily function noises, you smile and laugh. Every baby laughs differently and I think your's should be recorded for a toy.

3. The number of words you can say and sign has increased immensely over the past six months. In addition to mama and dada, you love to say apple, ball, book, Howie, No (many times those last two words are together), stop, iPoop, peas for please, mo for more, wawa for milk, Nama for Grandma and nigh nigh for anyone who closes their eyes.

4. You are a pro at kisses and hugs. I love the way you pucker your lil lips and pat me on the back  when we hug.

5. Your favorite pastimes include playing with babies and putting blankets on them and putting barbies in the car and taking them out over and over again. You also love jumping on the bed, playing peekaboo or "I'm gonna getchu" and dancing, dancing and more dancing, preferably naked. Almost every day on your sheet from school, it says you enjoyed dancing to the music that day. When a song comes on, it's like your body can't help but move.

6. As for your little preschool, though it took you three. long. weeks. to stop crying at drop off, you now seem to enjoy your little friends and all the fun activities you do together. Your teachers told us at conferences (yes, there are parent-teacher conferences for 1-year-olds) that they absolutely love your personality. You are easy going, eat well and nap long. Three great qualities in a kid.

7. You officially know your name. Even though you think it's Gabba and not Gabby. That's probably our fault for saying Yo Gabba Gabba all the time.

8. Your hair is still blonde and stick straight, the opposite of your sister's. I love the color and am ready for it to be long enough to tuck behind your ear. For now we do a half-side-pony, and sometimes I pull it back in the middle, but that makes you look too close to two!

9. You and Faith/FaFa are getting along better, though you still don't trust her 100% and I don't blame you. She looooves to pester you because you're so cute and lovable, but much of the time she just wants to be near you and cuddle or hug. You like your bubble of space and seem to screech if someone enters it unauthorized.

10. I would list your favorite foods, but you still like pretty much anything and everything I put on your plate. Broccoli and cold peas are your fav veggies and blueberries and strawberries for fruit. While you're a healthy lil eater, you also go for the ice cream every time and unfortunately have been introduced to fruit snacks. Grandpa is your new best friend for feeding you pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving.

11. Bath time is a joy with you because you don't mind water over your head at all. Getting you out is a different story. Thankfully, a little foot rub and a light blow dry help you forget you're not in the tub splashing around any more. Plus, you smell amazing and we need to look into making it into a perfume!

12. You officially know who Elmo is! And Abby Cadabby. I am trying to get you to learn the other characters your sister had memorized at an early age, but then I realized you've never even watched Sesame Street while she tuned in regularly back when she was your age. Hoping to win tickets to Sesame Street Live in January so I can watch your mind be blown by Elmo coming to life!

13. Since you're officially 18 months it's time to start thinking about taking away your binky. Nooooo! You are so attached to your MAMs, even though you don't ask for them by name. And we can't go very far without your "birdie" either. I love that you have comfort items…makes our lives a lot easier in the car and at nap and bedtime.

14. You enjoy reading books now and will find one and just start backing up into someone's lap. You trust-fall your little booty right down and expect the lap to be there. When we read, you love to point out apples, balls and anything with its eyes closed. Animals noises are your specialty.

15. When you wake up in the morning, your hair is usually a fright, but as long as you can have a few hits from your binky, you're in a good mood. If you're up before Faith, I'll let you watch a toonie in our bed for a few minutes. Now that you know the routine, you walk into our bedroom and grunt and point at the TV and remote until somebody finds Curious George.

16. Just when I thought you were too little to discipline, you started hitting people to see what the reaction would be. I don't think you were pleased to find out that meant a time out in your orange rocking chair. It's hard not to laugh when you pout, but I think you've learned your lesson. The other day I walked in on your babies sitting in the rocking chairs. When I got closer, I heard you yelling "No No" at them.

17. Smiling for the camera or for anyone on command is still the opposite of your specialty. I have several cute photos of you, but only daycare was able to capture your smile when they took school pictures (yes, school pictures for 1-year-olds, too). It doesn't phase me a bit that you won't smile for just anyone. Make em work for it, GG!

18. You're ready for a steak. I swear you should have all 20 of your baby teeth at this point, as it seems like you're constantly getting a new tooth. Hopefully you're done until your two year molars!

19. The Boynton books are some of your favorites, including Moo Baa La La La and Red Hat, Green Hat. Here you are reading at the ripe age of 18 months.

20. After saying "yeah" to everything forever, you finally learned to say no, and we captured it on video as well.

21. You've been introduced to dum dums. Everything in the house is sticky. Causation, not correlation!

22. Current wake/sleep schedule:
7:15 wakeup (always EARLIER on weekends)
12:15 naptime
2:15 or so wake-up
7:45 bedtime
Lots of babies, barbies and blocks in between. And we can't forget your many meals and the outfit changes that come with each one!

23. Last but not least, you've been sick for the Thanksgiving weekend, it's made me realize that despite your waking up at 2:15, 3:15 and 4:15 (you're very consistent when you're ill) I would do absolutely anything for you. All you want right now is to be held. I'm happy to be the person to hold you. I love you so much, Gabrielle Grace. Happy half-birthday!

That's What She Said 4-Year-Old Edition

Me: "And what do four-year-olds like to do?
Faith: "Go to bed without brushing their teeth?"
Me: "Nice try."

Faith, during prayers: "God, where do you put your bike?"

Faith reciting the pledge of allegiance.
"and to the repuglic, for which it stands" …. "with liberty and Justin for all."

Faith: "Amigos. That sounds like mosquitos."

Faith (to Rob and me): "Do you guys know how to say United State of America in Spanish?"
Rob and me: (blank stare)
Faith: Nakitu Maseeeki

Faith: (sings an entire song about Spanish colors)
My sister in law: "So have you been learning Spanish in school?"
Faith: "No."

(To the tune of Hi Ho the Derry O)
Faith version: "Hi Ho the Hairy Ho"

Faith: "I really love this shirt grammy gave me!"
Me: "Awww, that's sweet."
Faith: "I love it more than sugar!"

Faith: 31, 32, 33, 34, 35, 36, 37, 38….
Me: 39
Faith: 100.