We finally bought our Christmas tree, last night. It was freezing cold, and Emersen cried the whole time in our dear friends' Jeep...but it was worth it. We brought the dvd recorder, so we definitely have footage of our baby picking out a Christmas tree! A big shout out to our most amazing pair of friends in the universe, The Smiths. Without them, we wouldn't have a Christmas tree. Their jeep saved the day! (Thank you both from the bottom of my heart, you are both incredibly and wonderfully amazing family to us.) They also forced Paul to listen to Christmas music, which he hates and I absolutely love. I don't blame him for not liking it though, quite a few years working the holidays in a grocery store where the holiday music starts before Thanksgiving and doesn't stop until after New Years would drive anyone crazy. However, I did get a giggle from him while I lip-synched the words from the Alvin and the Chipmunks rendition of Christmas Christmas.
So as I sit here typing these prose, just having finished re-decorating the tree with some incredibly sentimental ornaments I dug out of a box I can't help but feel excited about Christmas again. As your grow up, your imagination falls by the wayside to more realistic ideas and (hopefully not) pessimism about certain things like paying for Christmas, waiting in lines at the grocery store that would rival a ride at Disney World and the like.
Although there is no love lost between Santa and I. No one ever spoiled the surprise for me, and I'm sure my sister figured it out way before I did she didn't say anything either. It definitely was not some tramatic childhood incident. I think it was the year I was old enough to recognize my dad's handwriting that did it for me. It was a present that said "From Santa" in my dad's tell tale block handwriting. He tried to convince me that he was just the "writer of labels" and Santa had actually dropped the gifts off that night. My parents did an excellent job each year, making sure we made Cookies For Santa, and left carrots for the reindeer. Sure enough, the next morning the cookies and milk were gone and the carrots had been eaten. (Cookies and carrots?! My poor dad...)
I love Christmas, I love helping out a less than fortunate family and making sure they have dinner and benefactors for gifts. Last year, we went shopping at Toys R Us for gifts to give to Toys For Tots. I was hugely pregnant, and we had three huge bags of toys to give but the bin was gone! We hunted down the person responsible for making sure the donations got where they needed to be and donated them. This year, God pointed me to a woman who's misfortune was just too much for my tiny budget to handle and so I sought out the help of my husband and his Chaplains. They figured out a way to give this woman and her family of eight children a Christmas dinner and gifts for all the children. What a blessing, and true miracle for them.
Emersen's first Christmas is going to be huge, over the top and out of control. Her first birthday is going to be the same. But hey, if forty year old men get earrings and fifty year old women get tattoos because "they are only that age once" then my baby can get all the things I want for her because next year is not her year of firsts this year is!