Time to write letters to Santa!
Yesterday, we woke to find that our little elves had come bearing gifts–some new pajamas for Miss C and H-man. I guess they thought the kids had been especially good this year, so they wanted to leave them a little something before they said goodbye and flew back to the North Pole for another season.
The elves also brought a little video message straight from Santa, and Cadence about lost her mind when the big guy called her by name and she saw her and Henry’s name on the TV screen…
After that Miss C headed out the door to play in the snow, which was a very welcome sight after a few days of gloomy weather and pouring rain. At least a few inches of snow made it feel a little more like Christmas, and Cadence had a blast playing outside while her Daddy shoveled and sledding in the yard with the neighbor kids.
As for Henry and I, we stayed in where it was warm and hung out.
And now, forgive me while I overload you with photos, but I can’t help it. Christmas becomes a little more magical when you become a parent. And this year, with the addition of little H-man to our family, we got to experience a first Christmas all over again. Even Miss C got in on the excitement. I swear, she was almost more excited about helping her little brother open gifts than she was opening her own.
And I gotta say, when you’ve got kids as good as ours, it’s so much fun to spoil them a little, at least one day a year. 😉
Merry Christmas everyone!
People always talk about how much your life changes, how much you change, when you have kids. It’s true in a way, I suppose. There are certain parts of my life that have changed immensely. I’m perpetually sleep-deprived. I plan most of my evenings around stories and consistent bedtimes. And a normal day (at least during the baby and early toddler years) usually includes me getting puked on, pooped on, or walking around covered in a thin layer of drool or something unidentifiable and slightly sticky. But as a whole, I’m still very much the person I was before my kids were born. There are parts of myself and my life (like my writing, and my relationship with my husband) that I cling to, because they are things that keep me tethered and make me whole.
A certain level of of chaos is to be expected when you bring a child into your home, and yet I don’t agree with the people who claim that your entire life and world and marriage and identity get turned completely upside down when you have kids. For some people that might be true, and hey, I’m not faulting them for it. We all get to choose how we’re going to approach this thing called parenting. But I tend to think that completely allowing your children to take over your life and your marriage is a very dangerous road to go down, especially if you want to emerge with your partner and your sanity when the kids eventually leave the nest.
Stevie and I certainly aren’t perfect, but the fact that Cadence is still alive and that she’s a really great kid (at least 96.7% of the time when she isn’t overtired and whining) gives us a little hope that our parenting philosophy is working, and that we just might have a chance of our kids growing up to be smart, compassionate, productive members of society.
We try to keep it pretty simple.
1. We’re in charge. End of story. We made you. We wiped your butts. We go to work and make the money. We pay the bills. We make the rules. There is no sense of entitlement allowed here. And this certainly isn’t a house where a kid (be it a toddler, a grade schooler, or a teenager) is going to run the show. Sorry, not happening. As Stevie says (and his Dad once told him), “We’re the King and Queen of this castle. You are our little court jesters. Someday, when you move out, and you are the King and Queen of your own castles, you can make the rules. Until then, we do. Get used to it.”
2. We are a united front against you. There’s no taking a no from Mom and running to Dad to turn it into a yes. Not even a maybe. No means no, and we’re both sticking to it. We started telling Cadence this when she was too young to even understand it, but now she gets it, and I think it just might be one of the reasons she was so excited for Henry to be born, so at least she had someone in her corner to lend a little support to her cause. It’s also the reason we’re perfectly content being a family of four. We’re not interested in being outnumbered.
This December, we are suddenly outnumbered because, let’s face it, inviting a couple of ornery elves in for the month leading up to Christmas is sort of like asking to be thrown into a pool with a school of semi-hungry piranhas–you know there’s some danger present, but you still firmly believe you can survive, even as they begin to nibble at your toes.
So, after a few messes left behind after their late-night junk food binges, Santa decided to step in and help us out a little bit. Thanks big guy.
Cadence and Henry take note.
Since Cadence headed over to her friend Charlie’s house for a sleepover and Henry went down early last night, Leo and Cosette decided to head to the North Pole with the kiddos’ Christmas lists and stay over for a night with Santa. Of course, the first thing Cadence did when she got home this morning was burst through the door to find the elves, but what she found was a note instead, tucked into the branches of her little Christmas tree…
Have a fun sleepover at Charlie’s! Leo and I are going to spend the night at the North Pole with Santa and deliver the Christmas lists for you and Henry. Be good, and we’ll see you tomorrow!
Cosette & Leo
When Cadence woke this morning and found the elves, she came running back upstairs to get me.
“Mom, I found Cosette and Leo,” she said. “Come on, Mom. You gotta see what they’re doing.”
She took my hand and led me downstairs to the kitchen, where our silly elves had commandeered Henry’s bathtub and made their own little spa.
Cadence giggled madly.
“I guess they really needed a bath after their trip back from the North Pole huh?” I said.
Cadence nodded. “Oh yeah,” she said. “Elves like to hang out with reindeer, and reindeer get really stinky.”
Can’t argue with that.
Okay, so we’re totally slacking this year (um…sort of like we do every year). We haven’t even attempted to put up any Christmas lights, and we still don’t have our tree. To be fair, we’ve been a little busy getting our house ready to sell. But yeah, we still kind of suck at the whole “decorating for the holidays” thing. Maybe we’ll get motivated this weekend.
After all, our little elf is starting to give us hints that we need to make it a little more Christmasy around here. This morning we found her perched on the kitchen table with Cadence’s scissors, making snowflakes.
Cadence was so impressed with Cosette’s handiwork that she had to take the snowflakes to school to show her teachers and her classmates.
Clever little elf. We’ll get our butts in decorating gear soon, I promise.