It’s over. It’s all over. Christmas and Hanukkah have come, gone, and now are in the past. And this tired pregnant woman couldn’t be happier to see it all go. Oh sure, I like seeing family, decorating the tree, eating good food, and getting and giving presents, but I put so much energy into it that I barely have enough to get me through to the end of the year.
Christmas Eve was the more formal party night. We went to see my dad’s side of the family, and this year’s gathering was being hosted by my cousin at his enormously beautiful new house. I can’t even fully describe how big that place was. As we walked up to the door, Cordy said, “Look, a palace!” and Aaron and I had to laugh and agree that she wasn’t far off. The place has three full floors, a sunken formal Italian-style dining room, a two story living room with a wall of windows looking out onto a lake, etc. The downstairs was a funhouse: a game room with a pool table, air hockey table and pinball machine, a full bar (seriously, when you stepped into that room, it looked like a well-kept small pub), and a home movie theatre, complete with leather theatre seats, a projector and a very large screen taking up an entire wall. I was blown away by it all – clearly we’re in the wrong lines of work. It was stunning.
Cordy was very shy at first, but soon warmed up and was wandering through the crowd of about 35 adults and 20 children. Although there were a few other kids her age, who tried to interact with her, she ignored them and continued doing her own thing, as usual. Santa visited the kids, and while she wouldn’t go near him without me holding her, she did at least say thanks for the gift (which we provided). All the kids then ripped open their gifts, and I found it funny that all of the other little girls squealed with glee over their princess dolls and dress up kits, while our little girl was excited to unwrap a Backyardigans pirate ship.
Dressed up for Christmas Eve
Next was the gift exchange for the adults. By this point it was after 9:00pm – a full hour past Cordy’s latest bedtime – and by 9:30pm she was done. She climbed off my lap, laid down on the floor in the middle of all the chaos, pulled a pillow over her head, and fell asleep. Everyone had to carefully step over her, and the loud conversations did nothing to wake her. She slept for the rest of the night.
Christmas day we spent at home, with all of my mom’s side of the family joining us for dinner and gift opening. Cordy started the morning with her big gift: a trike!
That is the face of a happy kid.
She probably spent a good half hour sitting on that thing, saying, “A bike! A bike!” over and over again. She doesn’t know how to pedal yet, but she’s happy enough to sit on it for now. We can work on the logistics of locomotion in the summer.
Once family arrived, the day became a blur. Food was being prepared while gifts were being sorted and then opened. Then it was time to eat, followed by clean up and before I knew what was happening, it was 3:00pm, everyone was leaving, Cordy was down for a nap and I felt a strong urge for a nap myself.
Cordy got a lot of very nice gifts, including lots and lots of books, a playhouse for the backyard, an Aquadoodle mat, and megablocks. But, as can be expected from many toddlers, she had no interest in opening those gifts or playing with them. Instead, she was far more content to play with the boxes.
Huh? An awesome toy? No thanks, I’ve got this box…
(More tomorrow, including the Gift Hall of Shame. Although the winner should be no surprise to you, you probably can’t guess what the worst/weirdest gift will be.)