My Free Pass to the Circus


What a delightful two days it's been.  Tiring, for sure.  But also delightful.  Crystal often talks of juggling her roles and I now firmly believe she couldn't be doing it any better.

This was my first time playing the role of Aunt Karen and part-time mom.

And I now know first hand that Circus couldn't be a better analogy.  Things I've observed....

This is a very ORGANIZED circus.
Before Crystal left she gave me a fully typed two page instruction sheet.  This was no double-spaced venture, either.  Everything from the predictable put-them-down-for-naps sequence to getting-out-of-the-minivan and refereeing the daily race to the front door.

Not kidding.

So if I found myself in a lurch, I defaulted to The List.  So much so that my nephew took to saying with regularity, "What does The List say?" or "Have you checked The List?"  Last night after reading the kids their bedtime story and kissing them goodnight something was wrong.  I couldn't quite understand what I missed so I went to check The List.  My mom (a.k.a. Nana, Life-Saver, Child-Distracter) heard him mutter under his breath,

"I don't know why they don't read the directions."

Ah, I forgot the lullaby.  That's an easy fix: lullaby sung, foreheads kissed, crisis averted.

Gratefully this is also a FLEXIBLE circus.
When I referred to the list for lunch instructions, it read "sandwiches, meat and cheese".  The only problem is that I couldn't find the bread or lunch meat.  Hm.  My nephew came to the rescue.  How about tortilla roll-ups?  But what do you put in a roll-up if you don't have meat?  Cheese, peanut butter and red bell peppers, of course.  And they loved them.  (Um, I had a bowl of Cheerios.)

Good improv, little guy.

And lastly, it's an HONEST circus.
Let me leave you with perhaps my favorite moment.

My Niece:  "My pants are falling down."

Me:  "You need a bigger butt."

My Nephew:  "Like yours?"

Rookie mistake.  I walked right into that one.

Thanks, Crystal.  I hope you had a great time in TX.  The Circus has been fun, if not humbling.


  1. LOL, without organization, we moms would never make it! I'm glad you had such a good time with the kids - I'm sure your time with them will be a treasured memory!

  2. LOL and LOLagain!! Circus time is memorable, and I'm sure you will treasure the moments for a long time. Hope the rain holds off and you enjoy a soccer game today.

  3. Ahh, The Lullaby! How could you forget The Lullaby!?!?

    (Hope you made photocopies of The List)

    (You should save it so you can read it back to them in about 10 years)

  4. It was a pleasure to watch and help my daughter (Aunt Karen) and the Circus. She did a great job. The kiddos missed their Mommy and Daddy - that is for sure - but Aunt Karen was a worthy stand in.
    Love you all!

  5. This post made me laugh out loud!

  6. you rock aunt karen!! and crystal i must say that i am extremely impressed by the list. every time i try to do this for a baby sitter i ALWAYS leave something out. seems like you got it all covered....well almost.

  7. Bigger Butt....that is just too hillarious - I can totally picture the look on your face after hearing that! You are a #1 auntie!

  8. Well, the circus sounds like a charming and hilarious place to be! And you sound like Super Aunt! I love the two pages of instructions. That is right up my OCD alley.
    By the way, you all look adorable in face paint! Camo is your color!

  9. This was so funny! Thanks for the guest post, Karen. It helps us not miss Crystal, too much.

    : ) Becky

  10. Great Job Aunt Karen! Crystal is super organized and flexible! Her son is a great kid. This blog was a great way to remind us that in the midst of the funny and wonderfully honest posts Crystal writes, she is a non-self-flattering WONDERFUL mother and wife


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