Sunday, December 30, 2001

The Nutcracker

Sheridan and I went to see the Nutcracker. She sat through it pretty well but was upset with the differences between Barbie’s Nutcracker movie and the ballet. Mostly, she was disappointed with how little Clara does in the ballet, and how the prince dances with everyone but her. The audience’s favorites were the Russian dancer and the Persian(?) couple. Afterwards we watched people ice skate outside (an unusual and unnatural act in Houston) and then tried to find a place to eat. Hard Rock Café had a 45-minute wait and Sheridan voted down the Italian place since they didn’t serve Chicken Nuggets. So we headed home instead.

Saturday, December 29, 2001

I got a phone call from Robin, a woman one of my students set me up with. She was nice enough but too fresh from her divorce. Every topic we discussed seemed to end back at “my ex-husband Roy’s a jerk, and here’s why.” So I’ve resolved not to call again.

I took Sheridan to have her nails done (and painted!). As far as I know, this was the first time she really “had her nails done.” The lady was nice and brought Sheridan over to a rack of colors. She selected a hot pink with red glitter and was delighted to have a big production made over her and her nails. She loved it and has been showing her nails off to everyone. Sadly, her joy has been overshadowed by the anticipation of her mother’s disapproval. Then we went to a production called “Rudolph Rides Again,” a play for kids out in Meyerland. Simple, cute, and perfect for kids. Lunch at Napoli’s Flying Pizza in Meyer Park. They had the Cartoon Network on TV and we watched the PowerPuff Girls. I was laughing harder than she was, much to the annoyance of our waitress. The hostess had brought her two-year-old daughter to work and she sat with us and watched cartoons for a while. Sheridan put on the ballerina outfit Cynthia gave her and watched Barbie’s Nutcracker movie.

Tuesday, December 25, 2001


I got a late start on the day and drove to Beaumont, where I had Christmas dinner with mom and Grandma. Afterwards we watched TV while I wrapped Sheridan’s Christmas presents. The History channel had one delight after another: the Loch Ness Monster, Pompeii, and something else I’ve forgotten.

My ex made me angry with a story she related: Sheridan asked about the date yesterday, and since it was Christmas Eve she asked her grandparents to help her put out milk and cookies for Santa. They did. In the morning grandma threw away the milk and cookies but no presents from Santa came. Sheridan was devastated. She believed Santa had come and eaten the cookies but l left her no presents. My ex also took it upon herself to explain to Sheridan that there was no Santa. In part because she believed she was lying to Sheridan and in part because she’s too dense to come up with answers to Sheridan’s questions, like how does Santa get into a house with no chimney? I was furious. I already had set aside some Santa presents for Sheridan and knew how much she looked forward to it. Santa makes Christmas magical for kids. Know Santa, know magic. No Santa, no magic. Sheridan seemed okay by the time I picked her up that evening, but I still resolved to give her at least one more visit from Santa.