Halfway to Christmas

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And just like that, there are less than two weeks until Christmas. We had a great Thanksgiving spent with both sides of our family, then my daughter had surgery, so we’ve been hunkered down the first two weeks of December as she recovers (and we recover from waking up all night with her). But she’s on the mend and it’s hard to believe her second birthday will take place in just a few days. It seems like just yesterday that I was giving birth to her just 10 days before Christmas.

Every year since I started having kids, I’ve been humbled as I’ve had to adjust my own expectations around Christmastime. I have this idea as to how my house will be decorated for celebration, how I will cook all the Christmas foods and how the days around Christmas will be spent celebrating with family. The past three Christmases have not gone as anticipated. Each year, we’ve gotten sick during December and the germs seem to last the whole month. Now that Scarlett has mostly recovered from surgery, I’m praying the rest of the month will go smoothly…though that seems unlikely for us Hobsons given our track record.

Thank goodness we put up our Christmas tree a couple weeks before Thanksgiving when the UPS man delivered it, because I spent the first week of December at my parent’s house nearby helping Scarlett recover. That means we started our Truth in the Tinsel Advent for kids five days late and our Elf on the Shelf “John Jacob” showed up on Dec. 6 and has already forgotten to move one night. Oops. But I did start my She Reads Truth advent on Dec. 1 and look forward to reading it every day, digging in more on days when I have a little more quiet time to myself.

But we are having so much fun just celebrating the season and I’m trying my best to remind my kids about what–better yet who–makes this time of year so special. A few weeks ago we went shopping to fill our Operation: Christmas Child box and the boys had so much fun imagining what little boy would receive their gifts. They have since offered to give some of their current toys to other kids who don’t have many, which of course warms my Mama heart.

We’ve also visited Great Grandma at her assisted living home during her holiday party. Scarlett danced the night away as soon as the jazz musician began to play. She charmed all the older ladies and even conned a few into dancing with her. My boys arrived at the party a little later but had a great time as well. They were all enamored with Santa when they laid eyes on him. Santa asked JM what he wanted for Christmas, and after much thought, he replied, “A coat like yours.” And being the good Santa that he is, he let JM wear his long furry sweaty coat and hat!

The kids also attended their first breakfast with Santa. It was small and simple, but they got a second chance to sit on Santa’s lap before gobbling up pancakes (and Beau cakes) and creating special ornaments with a couple elves.

We recently introduced our tiny dancer to the Rockette’s Christmas show and I think she’s found her new calling.

So far, we have checked out roughly 35 Christmas books (many on this recommended list) at the library this month, and are planning to churn through a couple dozen more before the big day. Our local library knows us by name–well actually, by sight–because we’ve stopped by every couple days since Thanksgiving to checkout books, make Christmas ornaments, decorate Christmas cards for first responders, create light sabers–basically any craft they offer 🙂