After getting back from Ireland, I was in full mode Christmas planning. After all, I only had three days to finish up some shopping (fortunately I had already bought 90% of my gifts), wrap everything, clean the house, bake cookies, and do this all while keeping the kids busy and suffering from total jet lag.
This year I had made the decision to go “light” on presents. Last year was such a total overload that I can’t even remember what each kid received. So I really didn’t buy the kids anything but one or two gifts–and things they really wanted or needed. My sister and I made the same decision about the entire family. We all got gifts, but small gifts–nothing that cost too much and something we actually needed.
So everything worked out great. Except my present wrapping. That was just a hot mess.
Christmas Eve we went to my parent’s house for dinner and family time. We ate, talked, tracked Santa, and generally everyone got super annoyed at Luke because he could not contain his enthusiasm for Santa which made him behave like a bat-shit crazy person. Other than that, though, we had a good time.
(First decent family photo in a long time)
My head hit the pillow and before I knew it, I opened my eyes to Luke’s huge face directly in front of mine, asking “Can I open presents? Is it time? Can I? Can I? Mommy. Mommy. Listen to me.” I looked at my phone and the time was 6:30 am. I have one Christmas rule and that is NO OPENING PRESENTS UNTIL 7 AM. So I told Luke to wait another half hour and I got up, washed my face, brushed my teeth, and made some coffee.
But let me tell you, that 1/2 hour was the longest of my life because Luke kept pestering me for the time (“It’s 6:38, Luke. Now it’s 6:40, Luke. It’s 6:41, Luke”) and having to wake up the ultimate teenage girl, Maddie, who would have slept until 10 if she had her way and even though she had presents waiting for her, grumbled as she tried to get out of bed.
Finally, it was time.
(How Luke acted every time he opened a gift that contained clothes. The exact opposite of his sister.)
(Probably Maddie’s favorite gift–a pair of Birkenstocks. And Lord help me if I swore that Birkenstocks would never cross the threshold of MY house. If this doesn’t prove how much I truly love Maddie, then I don’t know what does)
I think this was my favorite Christmas yet because we really just enjoyed each other as a family and there wasn’t an over-abundance of toys everywhere. It felt like what the season should be about–playing with new toys/outfits, for sure, but also just hanging around with family and savoring that crazy/loving/anticipatory feeling of Christmas.