Sunday, January 2, 2011

To Christmas… and BEYOND!

We’re wrapping up two weeks of holiday 2010 celebration. It started when we faked Christmas on December 18th. I decided Santa was not about to schlep his business to Texas and was coming early. I decided this a little late, so we skipped elaborate planning and tradition defining and just kind of winged it. It was fun.


I pulled out a whopping three Christmas decorations this year. Our house is (still) not decorated for 365 days of the year (I am S.L.O.W.L.Y. perfecting my way through all our new space), so I didn’t feel like interrupting my projects to decorate it for one month. Plus I was out of town half the month. I can get away with this Bah Humbugness because my kids are too young to know anything is missing. We take advantage of their don’t know/don’t care innocence as much as possible (and I’m not just talking Christmas). We figure there will be plenty of years where they do know/care about everything. So while they don’t, why not cut ourselves some slack?

That said, the picture below is the extent of our Christmas scene. You’ll notice our stockings (which my mom makes, which I love), pinned down last minute with topiary bases. You’ll notice place cards from Thanksgiving dinner (beautifully handmade by Ligia) still proudly displayed. You’ll notice I have a fireplace. We love that we have a fireplace!


Anderson and I set out cookies and carrots. Anderson kept sneaking bites of carrots, not cookies. What kid picks veggies over cookies? Oh yeah, Harley’s kid. Anderson thought it best to leave Santa’s milk in a sippy cup.


Harley and I gave each other plane tickets to Texas, so there wasn’t much going into our stockings. On our “Christmas Eve” 524 diapers arrived from (they’re running a great deal right now: enter WEKI9180 for 30% cash back and 15% off your first order!) on my doorstep so I decided that could be Santa’s gift to me. And to Max. When we laid everything out on the couch there wasn’t room for Harley’s stocking so he got the floor. We need a real couch set. Or at least a loveseat or chair.


Stockings left to right: Harley (under the table), Wendy, Max, Anderson. I had a last minute idea for Anderson to color a picture of what he wanted and leave it out for Santa. It was a great activity and he loved finding the real thing next to his picture in the morning. A tradition is born!


Anderson (2 1/2) on “Christmas morning”

I’m proud to say we spent less than $50 on Anderson for Christmas. We probably could have stopped at half that. Again, that whole relish in their ignorance while you can. The priciest thing we bought him: 2 Disney DVDs, both on sale. I’m more proud to say Anderson was THRILLED with every part of his budgeted Christmas.

Anderson’s big gift was Buzz Lightyear, which we purchased for $2 at a yard sale.


Love at first sight.

Is anything better than experiencing the magic of Christmas morning with a child? Don’t think so.



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We do have another child. He slept through most of the morning’s excitement. When he woke up we showed him his loot: diapers and board books. As you can see he was ecstatic.


My parents got the boys this awesome train table from Costco. Harley spent 2+ hours assembling it.DSC_0037


Remember when all I wanted from Santa were these? Surprise of the morning: my stocking had a blue box inside... that was empty. Nice joke, right? The funny part is I pulled the prank on Harley. You should have seen his face when I pulled out the box. For about two seconds I think he believed in Santa again.


Turns out Harley had a real surprise present for me, a whole case of these:


Loaded with cane sugar, authentically brewed south of the border, packaged in cool bottles, thoughtfully purchased down the street at Costco. These things made Harley excited. (Shhh, I can’t taste the difference and prefer my Coke on the rocks anyway.) I was excited to have help staying up all night as we prepped for Texas and our 4:00AM shuttle ride to the airport. Oh yeah, Texas! That’s next!

P.S. I spontaneously made a New Year’s resolution for Anderson tonight while at Target: Quit the tat (pacifier). Cold turkey. This is HUGE. But guess what? So far, so good. A Buzz t-shirt may have been involved. Ironically, it all went down as I stocked up on new pacifiers for Max.


anna banana said...

Darling of course, we almost moved our Christmas up, but realized we had some conflicting engagements where other children who hadnt had Christmas yet would be there and would be very confused. :) We love used toys, kids cant tell the difference and really dont care. :)

Ali Snow said...

Can't wait to hear about the no tat adventure. I'm sure you'll explain it to Anderson and in all his wisdom he'll accept the new rules then go use the big boy potty and that will be the end of tats and potty training.

Can't wait to hear about Texas.

LOVE Mom's stockings as well.

How fitting that he "rowed up" his presents.

Have you ever used the brand before? Let me know...I'm due for another order.

jeanette said...

Overachiever...You actually got your children gifts! We decided that Cameron's Christmas would consist of his gifts from other people and the boxes in which they came. The boxes, of course, were the best gift ever. Our stockings were purchased from the dollar store, so I think you are doing pretty well! Did "Santa" have to assemble the train table lat that night?

Brittany said...

Looks like a fabulous Christmas! I love the pic of Anderson lining up/orgainizing his christmas gifts. That playdough is in a nice, neat row. LOve it!
Christmas is so much more fun with kids.
And I couldn't agree more, get away without decorating and skipping traditions while you can. When their older, it's impossible to forget anything! They'll remind you asap!

lys said...

You always tell such a great story! I love your fireplace pic- so pretty.

Jessica Taggart said...

There is no Santa? WHAAAAAAT?

Great. Thanks a lot.

Lisa Weiler said...

i love the sippie cup for santa

Mom said...

A very fun post as usual. My favorite pictures; Anderson gazing into Buzz Lightyears eyes and falling in love, and the look in Max's eyes with his Christmas loot.

Kaija said...

Thanks for your great examples of a budgeted Christmas! Afterall, it is the joy in the simple things that kids love -- which your pictures so perfectly capture!

Ming said...

I love that Anders rowed up his presents. I've never seen a kid who did that so neatly. Such a fun Christmas. Lucky little boys! That Buzz is fabulous.

Ming said...

PS funny trick with the little blue box. :)