Christmas, 2012

Well it’s Christmas again.  It really seems to just go by so fast!!  I think I’ll talk about one of my tradition’s at Christmastime.  Well it is the story of the, “Nutcracker”.  I have or we have been involved with the Nutcracker for I want to say 10 years.  It seems longer that that.  I have been a backstage mom at the Nutcracker.  I must admit, I like it when I am watching it from the house better than from back stage.  Matthew has been the Mouse King, Doll, Russian, The Arabian, Chinese, Jacks (MLB/Russian), Parent, Butler (Joffrey), Snow Prince and the Cavalier.  Connor has been a Dancing Boy & Fritz, Toy Soldier, Russian, Parent, Doll, Snow Prince, One of the Mice.  They have done Nutcracker’s all over the country, really from coast to coast and in between.  I can’t even name all of the company’s they have danced the Nutcracker with.  They have both danced with Joffrey, Milwaukee Ballet, and Dance West Ballet.  Matthew has danced it at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. w/Joffrey, this year with Richmond Ballet, in Richmond VA.  He also was at the Paramount as the Cavalier w/Salt Creek.  Connor danced this year w/Dance West and when they closed he jumped on a plane to San Diego,CA to do another Nutcracker.  They both closed the shows December 23rd and will be flying home on Christmas Eve.  I am going to put up some pics, but they are from previous years (some from a long time ago).  They will probably not be happy about it but sometimes you need a visual, so whatever.  So boys forgive me for posting these pics on my blog, but the way I see it,  you two are so adorable and me as you mother love the pictures.  So get me some new  ones and I won’t have to use these old adorable pictures.  Well I love them and it brings back wonderful memories.  I should take you back where it all started.  It was the 1st year that me and my husband, Michael were married.  All the way back to December, 1979.  We got tickets to the Joffrey Ballet’s Nutcracker.  We both worked in the city (Chicago).  We were just starting out on our married journey and we figured it would be a fun thing to do at Christmastime.  Well as luck would have it I came down with a terrible flu right before the show and we missed it.  Well if you would have told me 33 years later I would have a son dancing Russian on the Joffrey’s Nutcracker or I would be traveling to Washington D.C. watching him dance at the Kennedy Center with Joffrey Ballet I would have just thought you were out of your mind.  But that is exactly how it was.  Well I guess I’ll start with our 1st Nutcracker.  It was with Dance West Ballet in Naperville.  I believe Matthew was the Mouse King and Russian.  Connor was a Dancing Boy and I think a Toy Soldier.  I just remember learning how much work goes into the production.   I learned what, “5 Minutes,” meant.  And I understood why Beatlejuice said in the movie, “That’s why I won’t do two shows, I won’t do it!”  I fought with two boys to get their make-up on for the show.  Something I never thought I’d be fighting with my boys about.  We were up before the sun and at the theater for 6 straight mornings.  Tuesday thru Thursday, we did shows for the school district.  We had 2 shows on Friday, 2 shows on Saturday and we closed the show on Sunday afternoon.  We made a lot of good friends and it was something special to be a part of.  This was the beginning of my life as a real dance mom.  It is nothing like the reality show that I have seen on TV.  My boys have become professional dancer’s because of their love of dance and being onstage.  Enjoy the pictures and have a Merry Christmas.20561_267086706730_674061730_3559073_1642353_n23426_338134518057_744693057_3362651_4897057_n20561_267086741730_674061730_3559074_5567255_n20561_267086781730_674061730_3559075_5730685_n20561_267086831730_674061730_3559076_4837267_n151059_1699602257078_1448564859_31721330_7499754_nIMG_0201IMG_0204IMG_0224IMG_0221IMG_0226

Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving Dinner


Today I say was a beautiful day.  There was sunshine, against a bright blue sky.

The Autumn colors are so vibrant.  They followed me on my walk.

There was a chill in the morning air, but I warmed up quickly as I used the colors for my coat.

This wonderful day will come to an end, and Fall will move ever so quickly into the Winter Gray.

But still I will have this beautiful season!!  “My Fall Color‘s in a Bottle”

Mr Jinx the Cat

Mr Jinx the Cat

The Day the World was Changed Forever Matthew James/June 19th

I wrote this back in 2012, June 18  Happy Birthday, Matthew

It was hot, hot, hot that year.  I was pregnant w/my fourth child.  We knew it we going to be a boy and he would be Matthew.  I love the name, such a guy name…MATTHEW.  His due date was July 12,1988.  We had just moved into a new home in Naperville, IL Heritage Knolls.  It was right across the street from River Woods.  We had Michael Jr. who was 5 years old and Lizzie who was 2 years old.   We moved in on Memorial Day weekend.  It was hard because I got so big when I was pregnant.   And like I said before, it was hot, hot, Hot. Oh did I mention it was hot.

I had Dr’s. appts. like every week, because I was at the end of my pregnancy.  It was a Monday night and I had just been to the Dr’s. that day.  I was in the garage trying to get around the lawn mower, when I lost my balance and fell on the wires of the lawn mower.  I didn’t want to fall on my big belly so I landed on my legs.  Oh how that hurt and they got cut up and bruised.  The neighbor heard me crying out for help and came running.  He was a little asian guy and was trying to pick me up (w/o any luck).  Instead he just yelled to my husband w/a thick accent, “Your wife, your wife has fallen.  Come quick!!!”  Actually I was really crying  just because I was so mad and hot and tired of being pregnant.  How stupid that I could fall like that, geezzz.

Well then my husband had to pack us all in the car because the Dr. wanted to see me and make sure I was okay.  He put me on the monitor just to see how the baby was doing.  The baby was fine, my legs not so much.  Now my goal was not to have this baby until my legs healed.  I looked a sight.

I had a lot of work to do.  I had to get unpacked, set up a nursery, (buy everything including a crib as we had nothing for a baby) in the matter of a couple of weeks.  No easy task with two kids under six at home.  I had a girl, Laura Workman, come over part of the day and keep the kids busy so that I could get stuff done.  It helped some, but I was limited because of my size.  I was H U G E and the pregnancy was taking it’s toll.  

Father’s Day weekend came.  My dad came up to see the new house.   I just remember him coming up that day, that’s why I’m including him in this recollection.  Me,  Michael and the kids went into town to Ribfest that week-end.  I think it was the first time for rifest.  Like I said, it was so hot that day.

  Spent a quiet evening at home that night.   Went to bed feeling fine, just big, fat and pregnant.  Got woken up early the next morning.  It was June 19th, Sunday Father’s Day.  I had a discharge of water.  I thought this can’t be happening it is way to early.  I had almost a month to go.  Nothing was ready for the baby.  The house wasn’t unpacked.  The nursery wasn’t set up.  We didn’t even have a crib yet.  Really, you have got to be kidding me.  But the baby didn’t really care that we were not ready.  He was,so today was going to be Matthew’s birthday.  I had to call a friend to come and watch the kids until his Michael’s mom could get to the house.  I think I called a friend of ours from high school.  She came and off we went to the hospital, Good Samaritan in Downers Grove, IL.   

Dr. Muraski was on call and he was probably going to deliver the baby.  I wasn’t sure whether or not I was going to have an epidural or do it naturally like I had with the last 3.  I wanted to have a pain free childbirth, but I wasn’t so sure of getting a needle stuck in my back.  Well he told me not to wait too long to decide because once I passed a certain point I couldn’t get the epidural.  Well my first real contraction came and I told him to get the anesthesiologist  in here.  I wanted an epidural.  OMG, it was so easy after that.  I only wished I would have had that with my other kids.  Not only was labor and delivery sooooo easy, my recovery was so much faster.

  So I got the epidural around 9:30, 10 am and I just layed around watched T.V. til around 12:30/1 pm.  I started feeling a sensation of something, not pain just something was happening.  Sure enough, it was baby time.  Pushing was a breeze.  Unlike the other one’s, no pain!!!  I pushed a couple of times, and then there he was.  Matthew Frain was born into this world.  He was a beautiful baby.  Stunning, like an angel.  He had beautiful golden blond curly hair.  Bright blue eyes, I know all baby’s have blue eyes when they are born but he would keep them.

 He was like 4 weeks early so it was probably a good thing he came then.  As it was, he was 6 lbs. 13 oz.  He would of been like 9 lbs. if he had been born in July.  It was a good thing..  The weather was so, so hot.  100’s and  a drought on top of that.  I think we had 3 or 4, 100+ degree days that week he was born.  But Matthew was born on Father’s Day and that was a cool thing to give my husband that day.  A brand new, baby boy on Father’s Day, Matthew James.  What a cool name.  



Our Robin’s Nest


Social Media/Technology

Wow, I am so not sure of anything I am doing.  I have so much to learn, but I’m just trying to do it.  Today I posted on a website and my picture was attached.  I don’t know how that happened, but it was a good picture so I don’t really care.  Did you ever feel like the universe is working with you and helping you to make things happen.  Well today was that kind of day.  I don’t believe in coincidences (I hope that is spelled correctly).  It was what I call a, “God Wink.”  He’s just helping you out with his plan.  Well I’m trying to stay out of his way and let his plan work because I’m sure it is better than my plan.  He is just pointing you in the right direction and keeping you on course.  It’s called Faith & Hope.  Love, Patti