Thursday, December 31, 2015

My Christmas Wish


My simple wish for Christmas: I hope that, when my children are grown, that one of their favorite Christmas memories is having gone to Grammy & Papa's house and Grandma & Grandpa's house for the holiday.


This is the good stuff. 


Friday, December 25, 2015

What I Loved About This Morning


I loved being just as excited about Christmas morning as my kids were.  I was the first one up, way too early, because I couldn't sleep.  I loved our tree as it glittered so imperfectly in the early morning darkness (our prelit progressively lost its lights as the month went on).

I loved sitting with Drew on the couch in the morning quiet, while we waited for the others to wake up.


I loved their nervous anticipation.


I loved that Reed was just as excited for his sister to get gifts from Santa as he was about his own.


I loved Drew's face when he realized there was stuff inside the Skylanders storage case, too.


I loved that Ruby's is super excited about dental hygiene.




I loved it when he said "This is the best Christmas ever!"


I loved that I didn't spoil the magic.


I loved their expressions.


I loved that she couldn't wait.



I loved it when she said "JOY!"





I loved that they loved these.


I loved that I was able to give to Ruby my old baby doll crib.  And that Joy was the only doll allowed to sleep in it all day long.


I loved this morning with them.


I loved the warmth of this family.
And I loved the joy and the time and the tradition of this day.

Thursday, December 24, 2015

The Magic of Christmas


I was *this close* to spilling the beans about Santa Claus.  Truly.  *This close*.

It was completely selfish, too.  Bottom line: I'm tired of Santa getting the credit for all the good stuff.  (Although, he's also getting a little bit of the blame for not having given Drew an iPad yet...he's asked for one the last four years, for cryin' out loud!)

Then I thought better of it, and decided that instead Mom and Dad are giving the good stuff and Santa can give the less thrilling stuff - like the books and the fleece tie blankets.

But then.  We made our visit to see Santa and what do the boys ask for from him?  The good stuff.  Of course.  

And it dawns on me ... I can't spoil the magic.  I need to hang on to it for as long as I can.

Yes.

They're only children once, and for far too short of time (or at least that's what people tell me). :P

And eventually they'll know.  They'll know if was us who gave them the good stuff.  And hopefully, by then, the "good stuff" will be knowing how deeply, how achingly, loved they are.

{I have a hunch it won't be much longer, anyway, before Drew realizes the truth about Christmas and Santa Claus.  He's beginning to ask some really good questions.  Tonight, as we were setting out Santa's cookies, Reed also wanted to set out some carrots for the reindeer.  I told Brad to grab nine - one for each reindeer - and Drew said we only needed eight.  We named them all and discovered that, in fact, there were nine, to which Drew said "Rudolph isn't real!"  For him, believing in a red-nosed reindeer is too much.  Bingo, our house elf, on the other hand - we were given proper instructions the first year he arrived, that on Christmas Eve, before he flies back to stay at the North Pole until next year, the kids were finally allowed to touch him to say goodbye.  Drew wouldn't do it.  Too afraid that Bingo's magical powers would disappear if he touched him (as Bingo's book clearly states), he declined the offer to give Bingo a farewell hug.  But he did say goodbye, with a clear request that Bingo bring back yummy food again when he returns next year!}


Tuesday, December 22, 2015

December Days

Here's what been happening around here, as we prepare to celebrate Christmas...

Our elf, Bingo, arrived on the first of the month.  It's just as much fun for the kids to find him now as it was when he first arrived four years ago.  Ruby's even gotten into it!

Her favorite place for Baby Jesus?  In the donkey's carriage.

*This close* to finishing The Order of the Phoenix.

At least somebody likes to clean around here.

New library books always give us heart eyes.

Twin day at school!

Brothers on our bed on a Saturday morning.

Song practice for the church kids' Christmas performance.

Going to school.

Coming home from school.  (Sunshine!  Green grass!)

Quick and easy when Dad's away for dinner.

Reed volunteered to bake a cake for the birthday party for Jesus at church.  He's serious about bakin'.

I heart our church.  So much.

Santa House!



Ruby said no.  Maybe next year?


Brad (and his beard) hosting the holiday family night lip sync contest at church.

John Lennon's Happy Christmas as lip sync'd by Josh & Friends (including Drew's and Reed's puppet handiwork).

The winners!!

My heart grew three sizes...

Reed & BFF Jocelyn at their classroom holiday party.

Making cinnamon ornaments.

What a Glorious Night!  What a glorious sight!

!!!

Pie Face at Drew's classroom holiday party.

Brad took his girls on a lunch date to Olive Garden.

It's been a full month.  This is the first time in a long time, though, where it's been full and relaxing, not full and busy.  Good stuff.  Fun stuff.  Life-giving stuff.  And the excitement is just beginning!