Anyone who wants to see him or herself as an elf can visit the Office Max "Elf Yourself" website (if you click on the links to my videos you will see a "Create your own" button on the page. To date, hundreds of millions of elves have been created on the site.) I remember seeing it for the first time years ago at work. Someone had sent me the link in an email. Last year my brother sent one in an email with his whole family as dancing elves. It's good for a laugh and only takes a minute to do.
This year I couldn't resist "elving" Michelle and I. She doesn't give me a lot of time to do things these days. She's been a night owl lately up until 2 a.m. sometimes and by then I'm too tired to do anything. So I've started trying to do some things while she's awake -- including checking my email etc in the afternoon. I managed to make the elf videos with her on my lap. It took less than a minute to upload the photos and resize them for the elf bodies. When I played the elf video she seemed to enjoy it.
It's funny seeing Michelle as a dancing elf. It's kind of eerie. She can't even stand yet, much less walk or dance.
She did stand for two seconds on her own the other night though. I had my hands waiting on either side of her to catch her if she collapsed. I was amazed when I let go for a second that she was actually sturdy enough to stand on her own at ONLY FOUR MONTHS OLD! It's actually kind of scary. She will be crawling soon, standing, walking. There are probably a million things I'm going to have to change and childproof once she's on the move. I'm not sure what I'll do. I've heard of people hiring an expert to come into the house and tell them all the hazards they need to address so the house is safe for the baby. I'd be scared they'd tell me to get rid of everything I own!
I've already made some changes -- like trading my glass and chrome coffee table for a more practical leather storage ottoman (filled with toys). I know about childproof doorknobs and clips for the cupboards. I have packs of outlet covers. I have baby gates, including one I'll have to screw into the wall at the top of the stairs. A friend told me I'd have to get rid of my books in the living room. I'm not doing that. I just hope she isn't tempted by them. She'll have her own books and toys and I don't think mine will entice her. I will have to find another home for the breakables (glass sculptures and vases) that are on the shelves of course. One time when my brother's family was visiting my niece broke a decorative plate (with a painting of St Peter's in Rome on it) that was in my kitchen. I have a collection of Eiffel Towers as well on my credenza. My kitchen houses my Europe collection -- I backpacked in Europe with a boyfriend in 1993 and became obsessed with collecting memorabilia of the places we went -- including London, Paris, Rome, Florence, Venice, Munich -- once we got back home. I couldn't buy souvenirs while we were there since we had to carry everything on our backs. A shopoholic who can't buy souvenirs?! It was torture! So I made up for it by collecting souvenirs at flea markets, etc. It was kind of strange when we got back actually because I kept seeing the places we went -- Neuschwanstein castle in Bavaria, Germany was suddenly on collector plates, calendars and books. The Eiffel Tower was everywhere. My souvenirs are part of what makes my house a home. They are pieces of me, the life that I have lived so far. I really don't want to pack them all away. Of course Michelle is the most important thing in my life now. She is my present and my future but I don't want to have to trash my past. So many wonderful memories. In any event, I figure I'm safe for a few more months at least so I won't worry about it yet. Maybe I'll get lucky and she will understand that certain things are "off limits" or she'll be satisfied with her own plethora of toys and leave my trinkets alone. I can only hope.
Michelle is a lot of fun. She helps me to get in touch with my inner child and my inner silly elf! I've always wanted to find someone that I could be myself with. Some of my boyfriends appreciated my weird sense of humour but with Michelle I get to explore my silly side more than ever. It's my life's mission to keep her smiling and to make her laugh so I do whatever it takes. If anyone else heard or saw me they'd probably think I was nuts with my high pitched cute voices and silly songs (like singing "She did a poo," while I'm changing her, to the tune of "Definition" -- it was a game show in the 70s-80s. I think they used it in Austin Powers actually and a rap artist did a rap version of it as well. Anyway, it's quite ridiculous. I don't know why I do it. It just puts a positive spin on changing a diaper full of orange/green goop and she seems to get a kick out of it.) I have to be careful when I'm out with her to tone it down a little so that people don't think I'm completely bonkers. At home it's just her and I, and Ali so there's no one to say "You're weird!" Maybe once she can talk...