30% OFF Pride collection code: USAPRIDE! Free Shipping over $99

Fuss and Muss

by Tanya Ward Goodman December 27, 2011

By: Tanya Ward Goodman

A few days ago, my daughter descended the stairs and declared that her new name was “The Fuss and the Muss.” She then went on to explain that she was “The Fuss,” and her bunny, “Bunny” was “The Muss.” They would live in “The Fuss and Muss Lair” behind the Christmas tree.

I had been grumpy about getting the Christmas tree. In fact, I was feeling overwhelmed by all the “fuss and muss” brought on by the holidays. All I could see was the pine needles on the carpet, the dusty box of ornaments we dragged in from the garage, the tangle of tiny, silver hooks, tangled strands of lights and last year’s crushed candy canes. I’d lobbied hard to go without a tree this year. Or at the least get a very tiny one.

It’s not that I’m a complete Scrooge, it’s just that we are travelling and it seems silly to go through all the fuss and muss when it’s not going to be up for that long.

My plan to pick up branches from trees knocked down in the windstorm was met with incredulous eye rolls from my children. Even my husband wondered which prairie I’d chosen for my little house. The thought of no tree (or even a slightly smaller tree) squeezed tears from my sturdy son. And so I caved to the fuss and the muss of the holiday. Paper and tape and boxes and pine needles and gift lists and grocery lists and on and on and on…

I think my daughter has triumphed over the fuss and the muss. By dubbing herself “The Fuss and the Muss,” she has assumed all the power. Nothing will be fussier or mussier than she. (And sometimes this is true.) She has also made a kind of order out of the Fuss and the Muss. In the lair behind the Christmas tree, she performs shadow puppet shows that are silent and beautiful. Her small hands move in the light, casting only slightly larger shadows on the wall. A dog chases a bunny until suddenly the show ends. “Cut the lights,” she says. “Cut the direction. Cut the action.”
It’s the holiday season and The Fuss in the Muss is in control. And she puts the light in my heart.

The post Fuss and Muss appeared first on The Next Family.

Tanya Ward Goodman
Tanya Ward Goodman


Leave a comment

Comments will be approved before showing up.

Also in Parenting

Modern Fitness For the Modern Parent

by The Next Family March 25, 2016


Originally published on The Seattle Lesbian

By Laura King

Life can get busy. With work, kids, family commitments, friends, chores, and the general chaos of everyday life, it can be near impossible at times to sit down for a cup of tea, let alone squeeze in an hour of exercise regularly. However, all things are possible if you set your mind to them. Those that prioritize their fitness nearly...

Continue Reading →

Estate Planning: The Basics For LGBT Families

by The Next Family March 25, 2016

With the passage of marriage equality last year, laws have been quickly changing across the United States. LGBT couples with or without children weren’t just given the right of marriage, they were provided new protections and benefits within their families. All of a sudden, LGBT couples and families had to figure out how to file jointly when it came to taxes, how to add...

Continue Reading →

Representation of Modern Families in Kid-Friendly Entertainment

by The Next Family March 24, 2016 1 Comment


By Alex Temblador

I recently wrote an article for The Next Family called, “Family-Friendly Films That Feature Adoption and Foster Care,” that shared wonderful family films with adoption or foster care story lines. My reasoning behind doing so was because every family deserves a chance to see similar families like theirs represented in various forms of entertainment.

The same can be said of other...

Continue Reading →