I truly do love this time of the year. It gets dark early and that is like a cozy warm glove enveloping us. The kids have hockey three days a week which I love because I get to spend 1 on 1 times with them that I do not get more of the year. When hockey is done and after dinner dishes are washed and things are mostly put away we begin the rush to get the kids to bed. Baths as needed, brushing teeth, pajamas, grunts and groans about the time and who is going to read first to whom and how much longer till Santa comes. Serious question; serious answer is 'not for a while peanut we still have Thanksgiving in there'. And there is always that perfect O of the mouth like 'Oh yeah that is poor Thanksgiving it is so silly'. No love for Thanksgiving.
Though I did share with M Bug why I love turkey day the most. It is a quiet weekend for us. We are a small (but mighty :) ) family. It has always been a small thing for us even as a kid growing up. No travel required. No kids versus adults tables. No crazy family members to stay out of the way of. No drunken shenanigans from crazy Uncle Bob (neither side of our family has a crazy uncle Bob but we are still safe from him either way!) I would have to say if I am being completely honest I do not feel I have missed out. I feel sorry for people who have to do all or any of that. We do not get stay home in our jammies all morning whipping up a delightful meal with the Macy's Thanksgiving parade on in the background and kids running to and fro up the stairs out the back door and back in again with red cheeks and wind blown hair. I suppose the kids get a little bored - I assume they would prefer more kids be around but for the most part we are happy and jovial with drinks at noon and a movie in the afternoon. I told M Bug it is the best holiday for kids because there is absolutely NOTHING required of them. They can play, relax, watch TV, sleep, and eat. It is the ultimate in life. I think that makes for the best holiday ever!
Last night I snuggled in with M Bug and our favorite kid's catalog. It only comes around the holidays every year. Maybe it does come more often but we usually pitch it I guess. Not at this time of year. We pour over the catalog and discuss the options. He gets a pen and circles things. We talk about why something would be cool and why it would not be (it costs a lot, that looks kind of cheap, I am not sure that is the right age for me...) This discussions spills over into dinner and car conversations. We are always asking - what do you want? what looks good this year for Christmas? have you thought about Christmas morning and what you would be most excited to see? If you do not get everything you want and you only get a few things, what would you most want to get?
I love the planning involved in the Christmas season. Even when Santa has left the building I do think we will lose the love of planning, the discussions snuggled up warm and cozy under layers of bedding with the odd catalog our heads together, the conversations about what is cool and what is not any more. It is the part about the holidays that I love, a holiday I used to loathe as a kid but have come to love as an adult with my own family because of the traditions and sweetness we have surrounded the holiday season in. Starting with Thanksgiving on and it is about us, together, our small family and we appreciate our bigger family but we truly like the sense of togetherness and love we have fostered.
Yes, Christmas is a money driven holiday, material in nature and it is hard to see past the obnoxiousness of that sometimes especially at the eleventh hour when I am wild eyed at the mall trying to come up with something to stuff in a stocking that is not candy because my kids. have. had.so. much. candy. already. NO MORE RED DYE #4 thankyouverymuch. Beyond of it though, if we all worked harder to get away from the money and the obnoxious holiday "stuff" everywhere the moment Halloween ends and rather we planned to maintain that sense of family, innocence and love and time together than I think we would all enjoy the holiday season that much more!