Well, my first try at National Novel Writing Month. I started at midnight on November 1 and by the end of the day I reached 5,395 words. Whoo Hooo! I am off to a great start. I sure hope I can keep the momentum going. I suspect I would have gotten further on it, if it weren't for the girl invasion, but that was a nice distraction. Kevin has decided he definitely does not want a little sister. Sam on the other hand doesn't mind the company. Someone who finally listens to him.
I am off to writing today. Hoping to get in a decent continuation on the word count today.
Here is an excerpt of the novel thus far.
Dec 18, 2000
I am so glad that James did not have to travel this week. It is the week before Christmas and there is so much we need to do yet. Hopefully, I’ll have time in the evenings to go shopping. James was saying something about wanting to be involved in the shopping, but we’d have to have Gwen come in to watch the kids if we did that. It is just much simpler to tag team.
We took the boys to see Santa over the weekend. That went over with Calvin about as well as oil and water. Calvin was a bit freaked out by the bearded man. I think things may have been fine, but Santa spoke. Santa has a very deep voice that I don’t think either one of the kids were expecting. The minute he spoke, both kids got scared. The elf helper brought over a small chair and they had Jeremy sit in the chair by Santa. Poor Jeremy. He did get to sit on Santa’s lap this year. I suppose I should have let them see Santa separately instead of together at the same time. But after standing in line for an hour, we just wanted to get it done and over with. Calvin started screaming the minute Santa spoke. His little pudgy face turned bright red and the tears just streamed down his face. Then the moment I’ll never forget. Calvin kicked Santa. Right in the knee. Oh, lovely I have the child who kicked Santa. I bet my boys made Santa’s day. We will be the story that Santa tells his family about when speaking of his Santa career.
What a lovely picture that turned out to be! Jeremy looks scared. Like a deer in the headlights. His eyes are so big and he has this shocked look on his face. I’m not sure what was going through his head. Calvin has his mouth wide open screaming, his face a very bright red, with tears streaming. And Santa….Santa is clutching Calvin for dear life. I hope they pay Santa a good salary for his job.
While we waited for our pictures to develop, Jeremy had gotten into the Peppermint Patties they had on the table for their customers. I am not sure how I missed Jeremy getting into those, but I did. Apparently James did not notice either. I guess we were just so wrapped up in comforting Calvin and calming him down. Plus deciding which pictures to order.
I’m sure the Gap Store will not allow us back into their store. But that is what they get for having pure glass walls in front of their store. They should really be mad at Santa and not us. Santa is the one who provided the chocolates. My lovely little innocent Jeremy got chocolate every where. All down his mouth and all over his hands. Chocolate was all over his clothes. He then decided it was a good idea to wipe his chocolate covered hands and mouth all over the glass windows of the Gap Store. What a lovely decision. I had Calvin snug in his stroller at this point, so upon noticing Jeremy and the store clerk was headed our way. James whisked Jeremy up and we ran out of there pretty quickly. I’m sure we aren’t the first ones to smear chocolate all over their glass walls. At least it was on the outside of the store and not the inside. I do wonder though, how many times through out the day the Gap store ladies have to clean the outside glass from the Santa exhibit.
James and I got the car. We put the kids in, looked at Jeremy smiling his chocolaty smile and we busted out laughing. Definitely a Christmas to remember. We certainly hope Santa won’t remember us next year.
Dec 24, 2000
Today we spent the day with James’s family. They live in the same state as us, unlike my family. My family lives in Wyoming. I left home when I was eighteen. I went to college in Minnesota and while in college, I met James. I knew it was love at first site. So I stayed here when our relationship took off. Going back home to Wyoming for the holidays just doesn’t happen. Airplane travel is harder in the winter months, and you just never know what the weather is going to be like. It is just better to visit during the summer months when the weather is nicer. Things aren’t as chaotic then, and we get a real nice vacation out of it. So our holidays are always spent with James’s family. They really are a great family, but I just knew that Calvin would be a bit much for them to deal with. James and I are the only ones who have children, so we are setting the path, although James’s sister and husband announced that they are expecting a baby in July. How wonderful! James and I will no longer be the only ones with kids in this family. Everyone was really beginning to wonder. We are so happy for them. My children will have a new cousin.
I had no cousins growing up as a child. My mother was an only child, as well as my father. James had quite a few cousins growing up, so he got to have the cousin experiences that I did not. I am really hoping that our children will have good relationships with their cousins here.
The kids were so excited to open presents at Grandma and Grandpa’s house. They could hardly contain themselves. They couldn’t wait to rip into all that pretty paper under the pine tree. Curiosity was getting to the best of Jeremy. He understands what happens at Christmas as this is his third one. He knows what all those pretty wrapped packages are for him. Calvin was just feeding off of Jeremy’s excitement. I wasn’t sure how this would play out considering the way Calvin has been acting.
When it came time to open presents Jeremy went nuts. He giggled and he ooohed an awed at the paper. He enjoyed opening presents so much. He had more fun with the paper and boxes than he did with the actual presents. Christmas is just supposed to be so fun with the little ones. Jeremy’s excitement and joy was completely overshadowed by Calvin, however. Through, the chaos of presents and paper ripping Calvin just sat there and cried. He wanted nothing to do with any of it. At one point he got up and walked away. I went to go see where he was and he was sitting in a corner. He was still upset, but he seemed to more complacent there. So I left him there. Jeremy kept yelling “mommy, mommy, wook.” Jeremy had proceeded to open all of Calvin’s presents and mine. Bless his heart. I’m just glad at least one of my sons had a good time.
I could tell James family noticed Calvin’s behavior. They pretended not to notice, but I could tell they did. They started to ask questions that I simply did not have answers for. I’m sure they were wondering what kind of mother I am, to have such a child who just seems so different. I really wish I knew what has gotten into him. What ever it is, it certainly isn’t going to change any time soon. It is just who he is. I’ve heard of animals temperaments changing when they get older, so perhaps the same is true of Calvin.
To avoid unanswerable questions, I got up to check Calvin. He had gotten mysteriously quiet, although, I knew he hadn’t moved from the corner I found him in earlier. To my horror, Calvin was covered in blood. It was all over his mouth, his arms, and his legs. What on earth! I picked him up and looked for the source of blood. The first place I looked was his mouth. I saw nothing wrong. There was blood all over his teeth, but I didn’t see any teeth that were loose or indication that any had fallen out. I ran him into the bathroom. Of course, everyone wanted to know what was going on. I just couldn’t imagine what could have caused so much blood to be all over Calvin. It certainly couldn’t be something too horrible since Calvin seemed so calm. I took a wash cloth out of the cupboard and wet it down. I took off Calvin’s pants and shirt and still found nothing. I took the wash cloth and washed his hands. His hands at this point still had fresh blood on them. As I washed the blood off his mouth and hands, I noticed his knuckles were badly cut up. I then realized the cuts were from his teeth. Why would my baby injure himself like this? Why on earth would he chew on his own hand to the point of mutilation? None of this was making sense. I tried talking to Calvin, but I of course got the usual response from him that I’ve been getting for the past few months now. He wouldn’t answer me. He wouldn’t even smile or frown or show any facial expression. He just looked at me like he was playing the coolest poker game of his life. His face just showed nothing. This is definitely something new and I hope it doesn’t happen again. I’m just glad to be at home now and away from family. They have so many questions as to why Calvin would chew at his hands the way he did. I of course, had absolutely no answers for them. Calvin is proving to not be the typical child. I haven’t read anything yet to describe this type of behavior. I just really don’t understand.
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