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New Year's resolutions with a twist

Over the New Year's holiday, my 4-year-old daughter asked me, "Why are we celebrating such a humongous number, Mommy?"

It took me a moment to process her comment. I then realized she was referring to 2010, and I had to smile at my little Einstein's mind. "Yes, honey, 2010 is a humongous number!"

As I look back on 2009, I recall many glorious and challenging memories of motherhood from this year. There were times I wanted to pull my hair out, times I laughed so hard my face hurt, and countless times I worried about things like H1N1 or ear infections. It's all part of the joys and tribulations of parenting and leading your children into the future.

That's why laughter is the theme of this mom's resolutions for the New Year. I'm not a fan of resolutions. I tend to break them within 15 minutes of declaring them! So this year I resolve to:

• Not take out my contact lenses for bedtime before I find my glasses for reading bedtime stories.

• Not forget my preschooler's backpack, folder, book order, mittens, hat, scarf, jacket, snow pants, boots, tennis shoes, class picture order, and the fact that it is "wear blue and gold" school spirit day. Gosh, preschool is hard!

• Not use my six arms to drive, change a CD, talk on my cell phone, hand my daughter her sippy cup, and eat a bite of breakfast all at the same time. (For any law enforcement reading this, I'm just kidding.)

• When I forget to go to the grocery store, I will not boil the macaroni necklaces my daughter made for me in preschool.

• When my husband and I go to a restaurant without the kids, I will not roll up his sleeves or move the knives out of his reach. I will not accompany him to the bathroom and remind him to wash his hands. If my husband wants dessert, I will not tell him it depends on his behavior.

• Develop an ability to have a conversation with an adult that doesn't revolve around my children's toilet habits.

• Be a better disciplinarian. This means not laughing when my kids do something silly while I am scolding them.

• Spend more time with my husband. And for the record, quality time is not defined by us both falling asleep on the couch during a movie.

• Become more flexible. Yoga would be good, but I get plenty of stretching trying to negotiate a diaper change with my toddler.

• And lastly and most importantly ... Always find time for laughter and good times with my children and family.

Every mother knows the years go by too fast. In fact, I don't remember giving my daughters permission to grow up, but they are doing it anyway.

So I will savor each moment of the present, because it will too soon be the past. We will hold each other when my kids fall down, hold our tummies as we laugh, and hold each other's hands when times get rough.

That is my New Year's Resolution -- to survive, to thrive, and to keep laughter alive. That is my wish for my family -- and for yours. Hope you have a humongous 2010!