1.06.2011

With this Ring, I’ll take a Day Off and a Cup of Tea

It’s dreary January, and even though North Carolina is not typically that cold, and Carolina Blue skies do peak through the clouds from time to time, it’s still a long, lackluster month.  I credit the dullness to the let down of the post holiday hoopla.  Let’s face it!  December, even though it can be crazy, is a fun and festive month.  You go to parties with your friends, visit with family, the house is all bright and cheery, and you have a good excuse to be merry with a snowman cookie in one hand, and glass of red in the other.  After all, red is Santa’s favorite color!   But after you stay up late on December 31st, comes January.  Sure, there are parades and football on the first day of the month, but then what?    You have to bundle up to go the mailbox and you have no mail to look forward to once you get there because holiday bills replace the joyful Christmas Cards.  If you are like most, you also try to tighten your pocketbook this month, and that only adds to the dreariness.

To add some pizzazz to January, you may be thinking about vacations or days off from work, and are about to approach your boss with your selected dates.   My situation is different. I’m sure my oldest boss, five year old "JH", would love to go on vacation, but we have different agendas.  I would like a day off from him and his sister.   When I took this job five years ago, I didn’t know that meant I would forfeit all sick days and vacation days.  I know what you working parents are thinking!!!!  You’re probably saying,  “you don’t have to make deadlines, be in meetings, and you can set your own schedule daily.   That sounds like a vacation!!” You’re right!  There are some great perks to being a stay-at-home mom, but at the same time, you never get away from your boss.  They are with you morning, noon, and night, and actually outside your bathroom door yelling, “Mama” while you try to take the time to go to the bathroom.

Children of any age can be mentally exhausting when you can’t get away or hide from them.  When I was in the working world, I could close my office door and let the phone go to voicemail if I wanted to eat my Café Carolina Cobb Salad.   Now, I find myself not even sitting down to eat lunch, but rather nibbling off of the two lunches that I made for the kids while standing at the kitchen sink.  With the time and effort it took to make two different lunches because of the kid’s four year age difference, I have no desire and energy to make a third lunch for myself.   And on the flipside, taking two children out to lunch isn’t exactly the most tranquil experience either.

This all brings me to New Year’s Day.  I was standing in my family room with the TV remote in one hand, and with one year old Little L crawling up my pant's leg, looking at me with her big, beautiful eyes.  She wanted to be held.  At the same time, JH was yelling at the top of his lungs, which is his rendition of quiet, indoor play.  I was actually trying to watch some of the Rose Bowl Parade.  No one in the house had any interest and chaos was all around me while I was trying to focus on the beauty of the floats and the marching bands,  one of which was from my hometown of Cullowhee, NC.   Just at this exact moment of craziness, my husband, Big W, walks from our home office to the kitchen via the family room.   As he gets past the TV, I say to his back, “You’ve got to take April 29th  off, please.  I don’t think I can stand it if you don’t take that Friday off.”

My husband who is truly a blessing says, “What?”  And I proceed to tell him that there is no way that I can watch the wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton if it is like this, and I won’t be able to stand it.    Big W doesn’t even blink an eye.  He says, “Sure!” in less than three seconds.  He didn’t hesitate or roll his eyes.  He knows that I love a wedding like he loves finances, that I have been a follower of the British Royals since watching the wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer in 1981 when I was 13 years old, and that my collection of Princess Diana books clutter our bookcases.  We even chose London for our honeymoon.  You get the idea.

I’ve grown up a lot in 30 years, and I will not buy any William and Kate books to clutter our house, but I do want a day off to see this British historic event unfold live on my HDTV at 4 am in the morning with a cup of tea in my hand.   And thanks to my King , my little prince and princess will be upstairs with their daddy in the bonus room playing Wii while this Anglophile enjoys the British Royals putting on the their best pomp and circumstance.

Prince William and Kate Middleton


So as Wills and Kate say,  "I do" on April 29th  and enter into a world of wedded bliss, I will be living my own fairytale that same morning----a day off with a nice cup of English Breakfast with one scoop of organic cane sugar, and a splash of milk.

Til next time….I'm off to get a cup of tea!

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