Friday, December 25, 2009

A CHRISTMAS AT HOME

Brian and I had made the choice a while ago to stay home for Christmas this year. There were several reasons we wanted to be in St. Louis. The biggest reason was because we wanted Christopher to have a Christmas in his own home. He may not remember this Christmas years from now, but I we wanted him to have a sense of familiarity this year.
One of the things I couldn't wait to do when I had kids was to give them a real "Santa's Christmas". When I was younger, and when my mom was younger, Santa would always bring our Christmas tree and presents on Christmas Eve. He would set up the tree, light it, and hang all the ornaments.
I loved going to bed at night, knowing it was Christmas, but also knowing I wouldn't see any of it until the next morning.
Brian and I decided to let Santa bring our tree this year. It's something he doesn't do very often any more, but I begged him and bribed him with extra cookies, and he gladly agreed. Through the entire beginning of December Brian and I anticipated the arrival of Santa Claus. In fact, our Christmas season didn't really get started until this past week. On Monday we headed over to see Santa himself at the Galleria. Christopher got a picture with him, but wasn't quite as sure about Santa as he was last year. Brian and I then decided to head over to Tilly's Park to see the Christmas Lights show they set up every year.
We all agreed it was starting to feel a little more like Christmas was coming. On Tuesday and Wednesday Santa came over after Christopher went to sleep and started putting together our tree in the basement. Like I said, it's not something he does very often and he just didn't know if he'd have enough time to get it all done for us on the 24th. But he couldn't start putting it up in our dining room early, so we suggested he start in the basement and he could bring it up the stairs on Thursday night. I sat on the floor in the basement for quite a long time and watched as Mr. Claus starting piecing everything together. I offered to help several times, but he refused.
Then on Christmas Eve Brian, Christopher and I were invited to our cousin Leslie's and her husband Bob's house for dinner. It was a wonderful get together. Especially since we hadn't seen many of them since Easter. Christopher had a wonderful time playing with his cousin Dylan. Dylan was gracious enough to show Christopher around and he even let him play with all of his toys!
We had a wonderful time opening a few gifts and Christopher was so thrilled with every item. The two boys ended up racing around the house for about an hour and by the time we left, Christopher was done for the night.
When we got home I turned on the porch light for Santa and waited. When he showed up around 10 p.m. he raced downstairs to get the tree, and by the snap of his fingers all the lights lit up. He then tapped his boot on the floor and pulled on his left ear lobe. Before you knew it, all the ornaments magically appeared on the branches.
Brian and I stared in amazement as Santa ate his cookies, drank his milk and climbed back up to the roof where his reindeer were waiting.
Brian and I stayed up until around 1 a.m. waiting for Uncle Super Chicken to arrive after getting off work. We also tidied up and made a French Toast Casserole to bake in the morning.
When Christopher woke up around 6:30 a.m., much earlier than normal mind you, Brian went upstairs and stalled Christopher while I fixed myself a cup of coffee.
When it was time, Brian went downstairs first and waiting by the tree with a camera. I brought Christopher down into the kitchen and waited...
At first sight Christopher just stared in amazement, and then... "COOL!" He raced toward the tree almost falling onto it. He spotted his Talking Chuck Truck first and then Elmo.
The rest of the morning was wonderful. We enjoyed breakfast, a movie and even had time for a little Wii while Christopher was sleeping.
I can say that seeing the look on his face and hearing the excitement in his voice when he first saw the tree - well, it made it all worth it. I'm so happy we stayed home, and I'm so gratefully Santa put up our tree on Christmas Eve.
I've posted a few (17, I believe) photos below from our past week. We certainly hope your holiday was as wonderful as ours. Merry Christmas and Happy Hanukkah!
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MONDAY
A visit with Santa. Not so much.
Just a few of the lights at Tilly's Park. TUESDAY Christopher excited about the lights on our own front porch. THURSDAY, CHRISTMAS EVE Dylan and Christopher getting psyched for dinner! Showing Jack and Dylan his new book. Santa turned on the lights with the snap of a finger! (He said we could only take pictures as long as he wasn't in them.) And poof! The ornaments appeared.

Next Santa brought down all the presents off our roof.

He even remembered Christopher's stocking (made by Mimi)
FRIDAY, CHRISTMAS DAY
"Cool!!"

Elmo, my favorite bud.

Daddy helping me open a present from Mimi and Great-Grandpa Deck.

Mommy helps too!

Bangin on my new drum set! Daddy's smiling now...

Playing "Store" with Uncle Super Chicken.

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