Monday, December 22, 2014

cutting the tree to the quick.

ahh, the 'fake tree v. real tree' discussion we have every year.  every year, todd's like, 'let's get an artificial tree this year.  it's only a one-time expense, you don't have to wrestle it home every year, you can leave it decorated, it doesn't shed, it probably never smells like animal urine like that one time.  all of these things are wins.'  and every year i'm like, 'noooooo.  nostalgia!  (yummy) smells!  memories!  i promise i'll vacuum so the pine needles don't get into atticus' eyes like that one year!  puhleeeeeeeease!'  and todd is adequately convinced for at least one more year, although he's covered in sap at the time and not happy about it.  like, at all.

so here we were, with a tree strapped to the roof of the vidivan, and i was as happy as a clam in butter sauce whose clam husband is moderately annoyed with her, but everything will be okay because butter sauce.  and that, friends, is a happy clam.





we got the last tree of its kind at menard's.  sure, there were smaller ones, but we've all seen how that goes over.  and sure, there were the vanderbilt-caliber trees, that were like twice as expensive because their needles are all fancy and they circulate unicorn blood instead of sap.  but this guy was tall and cheap and perfect.

as it turns out, though, we bought a siamese.  it's not just one tree, but two, which grew next to each other and ended up shaped as though they were only one.  remove either tree, and the other is curved and grotesque and obviously missing its mate.  like me when todd is at work or in the bathroom, and not around to round me out in the classic man-and-his-rib kind of way.  you just got 'christmas-tree-as-a-metaphor-for-marriage-which-is-a-metaphor-for-christ-and-the-church'ed.  yeah, i'm that good.

anyway, todd had to saw off the metaphorical feet of the metaphorically married tree.  i'm not really sure what that was supposed to symbolize, but it creeps me out a little.  so i took a bunch of photos of it to assuage my unease.





anyway, as is the inconsistent tradition, i'll be picking a name for this tree.  last year's tree was Little Billy Junior, our first christmas tree was named Christy Brinkley.  somewhere in there we had a Daddy Warbucks.  this year, i'm thinking something along the lines of The Deuces... or something.

so here's where stuff could get fun if you people bring your A-game: leave your idea(s) for a name for this tree in the comments.  i'll pick a winner based on my own fickle feelings and name the tree thusly.  okay...GO!

Friday, December 19, 2014

weekly 'what's up,' teaser edition.

we got a christmas tree.  i'll tell you more about that next week, although i'll tell you now that it was less eventful than it was last year, when i cried and cried and cried over our tree.



again, more on this next week, but we lit and decorated said tree.  it took about a million years longer than it would have had i just done it myself, but that's the joy of christmas: everything is more difficult than it should be, but you're jacked up on sugar so you don't really mind that much.



i was in a christmas play.  my character was "Mable Pierce: Hot Mess."  i don't have to tell you twice that i was tailor-made for this part.  i was born for this.  i did... okay.

atticus lost his second tooth.  i would show you, but it occurred after dark, and lone teeth and bloody gums under poor lighting do not an appetizing photo make.

i got to snuggle with this girlfriend after her bathtime.  it was only the awesomest.



and here ends the last full week before christmas!  do you have your shopping done?  your presents wrapped?  your mailman stank-eyed for losing that one package?  drink some wine, it's christmastime.



Thursday, December 18, 2014

y'ain't dutch, y'ain't much.

or so i've learned from marrying into The Dutch.

i really am quite clueless about my own heritage.  my maiden name is some kind of german, or dutch german, or pennsylvania dutch, which is essentially amish.  or something.  and that's as far as my geneological knowledge extends.

but todd, on the other hand, knows where he comes from.  he's dutch.  and before you go calling shenanigans, citing his lack of blonde hair and blue eyes and weird strappy short pants, he has ample evidence.  his grandparents were immigrants, making his dad, tony, a first generation american, and tony spoke dutch exclusively until he started public school.  and todd grew up in a town where most people are mostly dutch, and basically the whole phone book is comprised of Vans and Vanders.  (prior to knowing todd, i didn't even know that 'van-anything' last names were even a thing.)

so it's been fun getting to worm my way into a heritage-in-law.  i mean, i'm crazy for pretty much anything blue and white, and the dutch are responsible for delft, which is an excellent starting point.  plus, the only foods they are famous for (that i, in my ignorance, am aware of) are all dessert-related.  um, okay.  sign me up yesterday.  (also, the modern dutch are famous for legalized euthanasia and prostitution.  but we don't talk about that.)

anyway, i've tried to incorporate dutch-related traditions at christmastime.  sort of.  i mean, i have some wooden shoes that i found at a garage sale that i set under the christmas tree.  and when we were in ames, and had a dutch bakery nearby, i'd always special order V-shaped dutch letters for christmas breakfast.  (DUTCH LETTERS, you guys, are why i married todd in the first place.  they're like a croissant filled with heaven, if i'm being forced to attempt to describe them to you.)  i tried getting into the sinterklaas side of things, and delivering presents in wooden shoes on december 6, but three things thwarted the idea of that effort:  1. we don't even do american santa claus at our house, 2. december 6 is the day after atticus' birthday, and i just don't have the energy for back-to-back presents days, and 3. black peter, sinterklaas' freaky sidekick and possible slave.

kay, what?  i found this.  who is this middle guy, krampus? because he is the worst, which is saying something considering sinterklaas himself appears to be a slave-holder.  i'm pretty sure krampus is not even dutch, so this picture is not entirely culturally accurate, which gives me some relief, until i realize that even if he's not dutch, krampus is from somewhere.  who on EARTH would come up with this guy at christmastime?!



gah, so scary. 

so i draw the line at sinterklaas but am still fully on board with dutch letters.  feliz navidad, The Netherlands.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

video vednesday: 'werk' with an 'E?'

of course.

Monday, December 15, 2014

monday, monday, meme-ing down on monday.

oh dear, guys.  all i wanted to do today was post this crazy meme of crazy dawson's crazy cry-face:



because, seriously?! this still shot is the best thing that has ever happened to me.  but is it really so much to ask to just post an internet photo and move on with my life?  you'd think i was being perfectly reasonable to want to post just one meme, but apparently noooooooooo.  the internet had to go and be all hilarious again.  LIKE USUAL.  

so i present to you today's 'Best and Most Loved Memes That I Found After Only A Very Brief Search On the Internet' Runners-Up:

third runner-up:



second runner-up:



FIRST RUNNER-UP!



and there you have it, dawson.  a guaranteed way to turn that frown upside down.  (actually, it may take a bit more than these to turn that particular frown upside down, as it seems to be twisted into his face somehow.  but as for the REST of you, you now have no reason to be dawson-faced this fine monday morning.  you're welcome!)

Thursday, December 11, 2014

what's up? (weekly.)

it's the end of the week, all, and you know what that means:  PHOTOS!

i have no idea what finneas is doing here, but he seems pretty confident about it, whatever it is.



my parents went to mexico on a missions trip in october, and brought the kids gifts this week.  penelope was looking rather dashing in her dress.



all of the kids have been happily occupied with atticus' birthday gifts, and there are plenty to go around.  the backhoe has stolen the place in atticus' heart that was once occupied by his Bobcat, which i didn't think was even possible.



penelope cut the cheese.  ha! fart jokes.



yesterday, todd took penelope on a daddy-daughter date to our local gourmet cupcake place.  (yes, we live in a world where that's a thing.)  she was beyond excited.








"here, daddy, it's bald now.  you can eat the rest."


penelope's verdict concerning the afternoon?



i bet your week wasn't as good as penelope's.

i'm hoping the fountain of youth is really just found in a pair of bedazzled jeans.

erg, you guys, i'm getting old.  i've felt it for a while now, just with the achier joints and the more brittle hair and the seemingly thyroid-related 'resistant weight loss.'  (thyroid disease is not a young-person problem, i've gathered.)  the other day i noticed that the skin under my chin is starting to sag.  i've started noticing that most 'young' people in the media are younger than i am, which is a shift.  but the clincher came a few nights ago, when a well-meaning teenager invited me to sing along to the new taylor swift song (which, hello, is irresistible) and i did... and then she was all, 'oh, you like the kids' music?'

and i was like, HOW OLD DO YOU THINK I AM?! I AM TWENTY-EIGHT!  I AM ONLY A COUPLE OF YEARS OLDER THAN TAYLOR HERSELF, FOR CRYING OUT LOUD.  I AM NOT OLD AND I RESENT ANY IMPLICATIONS OTHERWISE.  I. AM. NOT. OLD.

and even as i shouted it, i knew it was only partway true, and also understood that there was no way on earth that a fourteen-year-old could understand that twenty-eight is not ancient.  i'm two lifetimes old to her.  i remember being twenty-one and becoming friends with a twenty-three-year-old and not even being able to imagine a day when i would be as old as she was.  (although, she's now thirty, obviously, so joke's on her.)

all that to say, at the ripe old age of twenty-eight, i'm not only feeling old, but i'm reaching the age where other people don't assume i'm young.  and that's sad to me.  so to try and combat that perception, i'm going to start trying my darnedest to seem younger:  i'm planning on buying myself some really low-rise Miss Me jeans in my high school size (because if it says it on the tag, it becomes true, and everyone else agrees that it must be your size) and some cap-sleeve tshirts that say stuff like "spoiled" and "whatever" on them.  i'm going to bleach my hair a really shocking shade of brass (except for the roots, obviously, which will remain dark, because dark roots give the illusion of volume, and volume gives the illusion of youth.)  i will always chew gum.  and i'll probably start tanning and smoking, because those things undoubtedly make you look younger for the first year or two.  and i'll definitely put my nose ring back in to round out the look.

this is the beginning of a new era for paige van voorst, so get ready, world.  i'm about to turn back the hands of time, and if i can't seem young, at least i can seem like an old person who's trying to seem young.  which is clearly the next best thing.  if anyone wants a ride in my new soft-top jeep, just page me.


Wednesday, December 10, 2014

video vednesday: at the end of the day, it's your health and attitude that makes us love you.

Tuesday, December 9, 2014

birthday party like it's 1999.

yeah, we did.



there was a cake, the theme of which was a repeat from a previous year, but which has proven to be a perennial favorite, so there's no complaining.





he looked thrilled to have to wait to open his presents.



it all worked out in the end, though, when he got his very own tool set.  another perennial gift, but this time it had real tools, and nails and screws, and real life wood from a tree on which to practice hammering and screwing.  among other gifts from people who know him well:  a dump truck, a lego set that can be built into three different construction vehicles, and a hot wheels track.





yepper, it was a right excellent party.

Monday, December 8, 2014

calls from the tub.


boop, boop, boop, just calling my bff.  


hang on, it's ringing.


haaayyyyyyy gurrrrrrl!