Monday, December 6, 2010

Go big or go home, Christmas-style.

As always, December 1st hit (which I know is wildly late to some of you!) and the Christmas decorations came out of cold, hard isolation, aka the garage.

I took Jake's nap as an opportunity to run around like a chicken with my head cut off, pulling various pieces of d├ęcor out of the Rubbermaid containers, with absolutely no rhyme or reason, and jaunted my happy tush all around the house spreading Christmas cheer.

You guys. I LOVE Christmas. LOVE.

I love how merry (don't. just don't) it makes the house seem. I love how the Christmas tree, the strand of lights framing the French doors, and the light-up snowman work together to illuminate our nights. I love how this time of year makes me feel like a kid again; giddy with anticipation of the smiles and happy and curiosity of what's headed our way.

And, the baking. Oh, the baking. Could I be more pumped? (I sincerely hope you read that in your best Chandler voice) No, I certainly could not. There are few things I love more than cooking a meal to warm my boys' bellies, and serving up some tantalizing, must-have-dropped-from-Heaven dessert to top things off. I love that they're excited for what I make them. Of course, Gary will be getting his goodies long distance, but he's getting them nonetheless :-)

I love watching Jake's eyes dance as he stares in awe of the lights and decorations. I love that I get to help out Santa. Last year, Jake was 3 months old, and excited to watch all the present opening, and was definitely feeding off all our happy, but this year? He's so much more aware I can hardly stand it. Ya know how when you're a kid and all that tickles your fancy is all the stuff you imagine you're getting? It's the polar opposite as a parent. I don't need one thing Christmas morning. My heart will be of bursting proportions watching Jake open his gifts. I feel the child-like excitement that he will one day feel, and it brings tears to my eyes. I want nothing more than for him to have a good day; for my husband to know he's right there with us, carried in our hearts.

When we were younger, for as long as I can remember, my brother, Kevin, would sleep on the floor of my bedroom Christmas Eve. We'd chatter until the wee hours of the morning, sometimes about what gifts we hoped to get; other times about anything that popped into our heads because we were too excited to stop. Once we finally were able to drift off to sleep, we knew it was only a few hours before the big day was upon us.

Whomever woke up first was to run out to the living room and check out all the loot, then run back and wake the other up, so that we could both rejoice in the awesome (mind you, I don't think we ever detailed the plan. We both just always did it. Must have been a sibling thing. It was go time.). Then, it was time to wake up my parents, then our other two brothers. We'd have to get the coffee going and run up and down the hall because hello, we woke you guys up an eighth of a second ago, why are you not down the hallway yet?!

Once everyone was finally up, we got into our respective positions; Dad on the loveseat, me in the middle of the couch, Kevin on the big chair, Colin by the tree close to the hearth, Patrick also on the loveseat, and mom passing out the gifts. We each always got one big gift in addition to the gifts around the tree. We'd wait for the word "Go!" and it was on! Wrapping paper flying, plastic cases being ripped was outstanding. Once we each had a few gifts under our belts, we'd start looking to the others, to share in their joy. We'd be saying things like "Patrick, that book on the Civil War is awesome!!" and "A laptop?!? Whaaaa?!?! Winner winner chicken dinner, Kevin!!" Whatever it was, we were so excited for each other getting what we wanted.

These are the feelings I cannot wait for our kids to have. I cannot wait for them to have that can't-sleep anticipation. I can't wait to hear their footsteps pitter-patter down the hallway to our room to wake up mama and daddy. I can't wait to see their faces light up as they see that they got that one gift they really wanted. I can't wait for them to be happy for each other, and grateful for what they've gotten. I can't wait to sit around with them, playing with their new loot, and eat our traditional monkey bread and hot chocolate breakfast.

Sitting here, in the delicious glow of oh, so many lights, I feel content. The years of tingly anticipation for our family during this time of year, and my hubby, is what's keeping me warm.

I am blessed.


Wendy said...

This post got me so much more excited about Christmas!!! I was thinking about our childhood traditions and can't wait to share them with Caleb! You'll have to post some decoration pics!

SoVeryDomestic said...

I looooove Christmas too. When I was a kid, I adored Santa, when I got older I adored helping my parents be Santa and now that Chris and I get to stay up late putting together dollhouses and stuffing stockings, I love it even more!

Daily Dose of Dahl said...

Someone, I think was office max or office depot, used to have an app around Christmas called Elf Yourself. You crop and paste pics of your family on elves and they dance around and sing. I'll see if I can find it and send you the link. So cute!