Friday, January 2, 2015

When You're Stuck Inside

Now that the holidays are more or less over (we have two celebrations to go; one on Saturday and one on Sunday.  While we're looking forward to both, I can't help but think, Just gotta get to Monday, then I'll be freeeee!), it's time for the requisite post on the winter doldrums and cabin fever and snow-cold-blaaaaaargh.

This is the third time I've written this post but it keeps sounding so insufferably whiney I end up delete-delete-deleting in irritation at myself.  I'm trying to turn it from a self indulgent, winter-is-basically-house-arrest monologue to a Hey-we-do-fun-inside-stuff-this-time-of-year reminder.

So.  Fun inside stuff.

We've been playing a lot of games.  Jenga is a family favorite.  Well... it's a favorite of everyone but me.  My nerves can't handle Jenga.  I have to constantly fight the compulsion to lash out wildly at the structure just to end it all and rid my stomach of the horrible tension that exists during Jenga.  Even watching other people play I have to bury my face in my hands and whisper to whomever's unfortunate enough to be sitting next to me to just tell me when it's over.  

That kid up there, though?  I wasn't sure if four years old was old enough to play Jenga, but holy cow.  That kid is a Jenga Master.  His moves don't make any sense.  The tower should topple after most of his moves, but it never does.  I'm expecting his letter from Hogwarts the minute he turns 11, because that is the only explanation to his inexplicable talent.

We've also been playing a lot of Tri-ominos.  Adelaide and I have played the most, simply because she hasn't been in school so we actually have the long stretch of time it takes to complete a game, plus when I play with her I force her to be the score keeper, citing math; you get lots of practice adding and subtracting both positive and negative numbers.  

Derek and I played last night, but I'm not sure when he'll be willing to play with me again.  Something about what I call a victory laugh but he referred to as a cackle.

Derek busted out his trap set for a couple days, and everyone got to take a spin on that.

Click to embiggen and see Cade's tongue sticking out the same way Derek's often does when he's drumming.

I was out for a run when he set it up, but could hear it when I was still almost a block away from the house.  It's... well, it's loud.  I don't know how Derek's parents don't have permanent hearing loss from years of his teenage drumming.  

There's the tongue again.
We did make everyone wear ear plugs.  No need to give them a legitimate reason not to listen to me.

Derek got some practice time in, too, which was tons more fun to listen to, because he doesn't suck.  Not that our children suck.  (Yes, they do.)  I'm sure if any of them choose the drums as their instrument (heaven help me), they'll improve.  

Baking is another great indoor activity, and will help you meet those winter weight gain goals.

Adelaide and I made that apple pie up there on Christmas Eve.  I have to say, if you have an eight-year-old sous chef, everything is so much easier.  She can assemble all your ingredients, mix up the filling while you make and roll out the crust, then falsely lead everyone to believe you're some kind of Martha Stewart by shaping extra dough into whimsical shapes for the top.  If you can get your six-year-old to misbehave on December 23rd, so much the better; he can spend the following day doing heaps of extra chores and your house will be unnaturally clean for your holiday.  

Throw in some books, Legos, and jigsaw puzzles, and you have our winter.  Crislers Gone Wild.  


  1. I want to come to your house for the rest of winter. It looks way more fun than our house. I'll bring my own ear plugs and I promise I will listen to you.

    As you may know, I am very fond of pie. That pie looks exquisite and I love the decorations.

  2. That is a beautiful pie --nice job, Adelaide! I'll be over for a slice.

    I'm quite happy Emma chose the guitar. Really, of all the instruments, I think it's the easiest to listen to when the player is still in the early stages of learning :-)

    Emma has yet to get bored. Like Adelaide, she got an amazingly big art set for Christmas and has been quite occupied. She's also been sleeping until 10 am, so Monday morning at 7 am is going to be really hard on both of us. Sigh.

  3. Now that we're in the middle of a snowstorm, I will steal some of your ideas. I'm feeling lazy--as in, "put a movie in while I read a book" lazy.

    My sons would be jealous of your "REAL" drum set. May I send them over?


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