Tis the season to be…something. In the benefactor’s case, a bit harried and busy. It seems her employment has been a veritable explosion of birth, a nonstop frenzy that has left her exhausted in the evenings, a perfect condition for children who desire asking favors, of which there have been many. Please, benefactor, take me here. Please, loan me this. Please, please, please.
The benefactor and children hosted an open house the evening prior to the eve of Christmas. Much preparation and culinary ingenuity was required to produce the grand menu we aspired to present. On the eve of the eve of the eve, the benefactor set us to work: chopping, mixing, and shredding various vegetables and dairy products to allow cooking the meal to run smoothly. It was difficult and arduous work, and required payment in cookies, which the benefactor reluctantly obliged. However, she had no choice but to meet our demands, or work solo.
Our open house was a lovely, all day affair where various friends came through to wish us happy holidays as we cooked tamales, enchiladas, and various sweets. The benefactor only became irritated with us twice today, which is a new low. This may have been assisted by the spiked cider she was partaking in throughout the late afternoon, which lent her a more relaxed nature. In the evening, we built a fire outside and sat with acquaintances, as the benefactor hosted her own people in the living room. When it got too cold, we returned inside, and the benefactor wondered if we had extinguished the fire. We planned to leave it burning and unattended, with a blind faith that nothing bad could possibly happen. She insisted we douse the fire with water and make sure it was dead, which was more work for us, but apparently necessary to guarantee we would not set the entire neighborhood on fire.
Of course, we asked the benefactor if we could use her boudoir to entertain, and she promptly refused allowance. We did so anyway, leaving various cups and platters scattered about the room, and the crumbles of cookies somehow fallen between the sheet and bedspread, about which the benefactor was heartily displeased.
On the eve of Christmas, the benefactor forced us to engage in unpaid work at one of our schools, assisting with parking cars for the annual art walk at a close by destination. It was an hour in freezing temperatures hovering around 50 degrees, and we did our best to complain nonstop and make it known how miserable the experience of having to do something for other people made us feel. After, all but one of us were ushered to the art walk by the benefactor, a yearly tradition. Again, we did our best to let her know how horrendous the experience of walking amidst lights, farolitos, and carolers was, driving her to tears until she returned us to the car, and home. Despite our insidious behavior, the benefactor prepared us food and warmed cocoa, although our poor canine, as she was pouring the liquid chocolate, was slightly doused when the pan splashed. It was a good lesson for the mutt to learn to not stand at the benefactor’s feet in the kitchen. After reflecting on our actions, almost all of us offered apology, which she kindly accepted.
Christmas morning came and the youngest female attempted waking the benefactor prior to the sun even tiptoeing across the horizon, then allowed her a scant amount of additional rest before waking her through relentless chatter. The younger male also, miraculously, woke by himself in the wee hours and came in to rouse the benefactor. Finally, she rose, and then, with glee, took joy in waking the exhausted, elder children, who were also required to participate in the tradition of tearing paper off gifts and eating griddle cakes.
After great anticipation as she made her morning tea, we took turns opening presents, oooing and aaahing over our bounty. When we finished, the benefactor prepared our breakfast, which most of us only half ate, too engrossed with our toys and tech. By afternoon, all we could manage were to lay like immovable, tossed sacks across the furniture. The benefactor was required to go to her employment, and when she returned, we remained in the same positions as when she left.
That night, we watched various media box entertainment, and simply enjoyed the company of each other, perhaps the best gift of all this season.
This has been a very active and chaotic week for the benefactor and children. Holiday vacation has descended, which means preparation for festive celebrations and plenty of time to slowly drive the benefactor insane as the days count down. To recharge, the younger female and benefactor spent some time on Sunday resting and watching the media box, literally lying in bed without a care in world. It was a peaceful and quiet afternoon of snuggles, conversation, and laughter.
Later that day, the benefactor took the younger children to visit with the man in the red suit. Only the younger female chose to talk to St. Nick, as the elder male bounced around the outlying kiosks of goods, constantly touching items as the benefactor reminded him over and over to stop touching said items. This was followed by gathering some holiday necessities from a general store, which turned into a faux jousting match when the children decidedly chose tubes of shiny wrapping paper and used them to charge at one another in the crowded store. After getting them to stand down with minor threats, the children began an endless litany of complaining about having to shop and be out in public, and the benefactor gave up and took them back to the homestead, for which they thanked the benefactor by making her tea.
The next day, the younger children accompanied the benefactor to her place of employment for the day, which proved to be a draining and exhausting day of nonstop whining and boredom, as the younger children did not adequately prepare activities to keep them busy. Upon leaving, however, an interesting conversation ensued when the youngest female pronounced that she wasn’t sure, but she might marry a woman when she is older, and then asked the benefactor if two women could have children together. The younger male, without a filter, immediately responded that she would need to borrow male virility to make that possible, which the benefactor had to carefully and gently explain as the can of worms had been opened. During the conversation that followed, the younger male was shocked to learn that men could have children pretty much until the day they died, whereas women suffer from yet another form of ageism when it comes to reproduction, which irritated the younger female.
When they finally arrived home that evening, the younger male sensed the benefactor’s exhaustion, refusing his nighttime meal, insisting that he hated the potato soup the elder female had worked all day to make, which the benefactor didn't have the energy to argue. However, he then attempted to steal a bag of cinnamon baking chips as his dinner, sloppily hiding them in a blanket, where they fell with a thud to his feet as he tried to slink away. That night, the benefactor was never so happy to hear the whisper soft breath of children sleeping.
For their holiday correspondence, the benefactor insisted they gather and travel to a location above the city to have their image captured. After 20 takes, the appropriate portrait was finally captured, but not until after the elder male and younger female jokingly faked a maternity pose, and the children lost their composure for several minutes. Their task accomplished, they wandered down to the city center plaza to admire the festive lights, and then reconnected with the elder male who was meeting his new love interest for a rooftop, sunset picnic in the crisp, winter air. The younger children only mildly embarrassed him, which openly entertained the benefactor, who rewarded the other children with drinkable cocoa and snacks at a local western establishment.
Apparently suffering from amnesia, the benefactor again took the children shopping, this time finding herself yelling in vain as they acquired air guns and played a game of cat and mouse throughout the store (luckily not being asked to leave), the benefactor unsuccessfully trying to pick out gifts as she asked them repeatedly to stand down. They then traveled to a food market, where the younger male stealthily swiped an excessive amount of free, sample cookies, vexing the benefactor and pushing her to threaten his expected gifts if he did not stop stealing.
Tensions have been running high between the elder male and the benefactor, as he strives for independence but does so without the same respect for the benefactor he once displayed. The elder children, in general, have been much more defiant as of late, and with all else the benefactor feels she is fighting in this world, it often feels like too much to argue with them over and over, especially as her love for them know no bounds. Alas, as the holidays descend, hopefully some semblance of peace will accompany it, for both our home, and yours.
The past week has had its share of ups and downs for the benefactor and the children, primarily with each other. Seemingly wanting to make it their sole mission in life to drive the benefactor to an early grave, the elder children continue to argue with the benefactor over their shared responsibilities in the homestead. They often seem surprised when asked to repeat a chore they were required to do just the week before (hint: they continue to live in the space), and often act indignant in the face of such obligations. Clearly, this drives the benefactor crazy, and oft when she finds herself repeating the same requests over and over, it is with less congeniality in direct proportion to the number of asks, which then infuriates the children, and further incites conflict. Tis a vicious circle for all.
This past weekend, the children were directed to assist with tidying to facilitate decorating for the yuletide holiday, including building their faux evergreen for adornment purposes. It took hours of cajoling, and the benefactor shouldering much of the cleaning duty, to finally get them to do some simple tasks to help. When it came time for placing ornaments and other such festive items, the benefactor left it to the progeny, which boiled down to the eldest female doing most of the work while occasionally throwing a snide comment to the younger siblings, lost in the media box. Internally, the benefactor felt a tiny stab of glee watching the elder female, generally her greatest resister, having to live out her every day, always bargaining for aid, existence.
Last night, the benefactor had to take all the children to a special event for the elder youth on preparing for the rest of their lives once they have finished their teenage school years, a topic that gives the benefactor great concern, as they seem quite incapable of functioning independently most days. A rather long presentation found the benefactor being distracted by the younger children, reasonably bored, who acted out by writing on the table they were seated at, or deciding at random to sit underneath it. However, she ascertained the elder children’s future goals for attending higher education through their written responses: the elder female wants to use the opportunity to leave the country, potentially join a service organization abroad, learn to live alone, and in general, prepare to enter the workforce. The elder male, on the other hand, wrote about his interest in art and science, particularly medicine and dance, and how he would use his time to explore and party. While slightly concerning, there was nothing she could refute in his goals, considering how she spent her own formative years.
Every other week, the benefactor invites an acquaintance to the home in the wee hours of the morning for calisthenics, while the children sleep. This week, however, the younger female woke when the benefactor rose, and insisted she could not return to sleep. Instead, she came downstairs, along with the mutt, and persisted in being as distracting as possible during the exercise routine by capturing herself as a moving picture on the benefactors talking square, primarily creating messages for her favorite pop star. She did this seven times. Seven times. In addition to her disturbance, the canine seemed to harbor a secret death with by walking in front of the benefactor and trainer as they were utilizing heavy metal bells with movement. Finally, the benefactor sent her to wake the younger male and prepare for the day, hoping these tasks would take her enough time to leave them in peace. Of course, she returned five minutes later (with the hound), fully dressed except for her stockings, which the trainer graciously helped her dress in as the benefactor was mid-routine.
After finally getting through the morning physical training, the benefactor quickly readied, only to be detracted by a search for the younger female’s new handbag, which went missing overnight. Finally, the bag was located in the laundry room (why?) despite the benefactor clearly remembering placing it in the child’s room. It does not help that the elder female has converted every inch of their room into her own personal closet and make up facility, and nary an inch of the carpet is visible.
Once in the moving vehicle, the younger female, irate and sick of the younger male taunting her singing, threw a paper plate (again, how did this find its way there?), hitting him square in the eye en route. They continued a back and forth, hands on experience, until the benefactor threatened, with conviction, that she would pull to the side of the highway and force them to make their own way on foot. At last, they placed their hands in their laps and conceded it was, perhaps, just not worth the potential agony of being abandoned by the side of the road.
The previous week, the children mostly got along well, which was a rare occasion. Rather, they chose to bicker with benefactor individually rather than each other. It often seems that when the children find their own unusual methods of working out their disagreements, it makes the benefactor more distraught and concerned for the well-being of all, as it usually involves some form of warfare, such as using plastic, practice weaponry. Aside from attempts to improve their target practice and annoy each other endlessly, they also seemed determined to heartily irritate the benefactor, often caught in the cross hairs of such battles.
Mispronunciation seems to be an issue that is ravaging like a disease amongst the male kin. During a random conversation, the younger male announced to his family that he would be the only one able to have ‘erractions’ during a now forgotten circumstance when he would be older. After copious laughter subsided, the benefactor gently corrected his miswording. He also informed everyone at a different time that he would be more equipped to perform the ‘himinach’ maneuver should someone in the household require it. Again, much giggling ensued, and the younger male, unaware of his mistake, merely looked about in disbelief and asked, “what?’ many times over. The older male also struggled, discussing the musical Les Miserable, and botching the name into ‘Les Me’, similarly mocked like his younger counterpart.
The elder male and elder female participated in a school dance over the weekend, after a special holiday party at the elder male’s place of employment. He was slightly vexed when the benefactor insisted on transporting him to the second event, insisting she get the opportunity to meet his newest love interest. Just to annoy him a slight bit more, the benefactor insisted on taking a photo of not just the elder male and his date, but also having his date take a photo of her with the elder male. He was not amused.
At the end of this weekend, the younger children were kept at their other benefactor’s home, after concerns of communicable disease when the younger male became infected with influenza. The benefactor missed them greatly, but also wanted to protect the health of the elder children, and herself, as well.
Lately, tensions have been running high between the benefactor and her brood. Instead of having to instruct the children a few times to motivate them to complete their tasks, it seems to now take almost entire days of cajoling for the benefactor to inspire them to actually move. This is both frustrating for the children, who tire of nagging, as well as the benefactor, who exhausts from being the naggee. Dishes have been left in large, unstable piles, and it often feels as if a tornado ravages the home, particularly following the elder children path’s through the house. For the benefactor, it feels like never ending disaster management without any real threat of disaster. There still remains hope that perhaps, one day, the elder will understand the benefactor’s frustration, but alas, not likely until they themselves become benefactors themselves.