I remember them all ... Christmases with my children.
Hiding presents, hanging stockings, staying up late Christmas Eve putting toys together under the tree, putting out the cookie and drink that Santa would enjoy and my little ones would sort of, kind of believe that there really was a Santa !
The whispering and anticipating and hiding of gifts.
The anticipation of Christmas morning and trying to get everyone to stay in bed, "just a little longer " .
The last days before the Big Day, running a million errands, wrapping gifts after little ones have gone to bed, hiding things in my closet ... I don't know when they finally caught on to that hiding place.
They were better than bloodhounds for sniffing out where the presents were hidden !
I would go into a frenzy of baking and cooking , shopping and wrapping, eating and drinking.
Sitting in the living room at night with only the tree lights on, watching sleepy eyed little ones fighting sleep, it was so magical, can't miss anything .
Then the children grew up.
The presents changed, they were easier to hide . . although sometimes not as much fun to buy.
Who doesn't love standing in line at a toy store where they have had to limit how many people come in ?
Suddenly it was about clothes, records, posters, books and jewelry ! Wait a minute, where are my little ones, sneaking down to see the tree?
The cat liked Christmas. He liked chewing on the tinsel.
When I found it in his litter box, I rejected the idea that he was merely decorating and stopped putting tinsel on the tree.
That did not stop him from a small attempt at climbing ..
Pup liked the trees but didn't really care one way or another.
He respected the presents under them though .. all except one that had a jingle noise that drove him crazy.
We had a dog when the children were small. He was totally housebroken, gentle with the children,a nice dog.
Some "friends" were coming over to visit, bringing their two small brats ...err... children and we bought and wrapped two presents and put them under the tree.
Later in the afternoon, we came into the living room and the dog, skulked out, looking guilty .. what in the world? nothing is damaged, the tree is still standing, wait, what is that ?
The presents for the two visiting children are wet ! they are in a puddle !
Right before Christmas Day I would usually have a melt down .. I can't get everything done !
I have to buy a gifts for the employees! The children are having half days, I am not going to be able to manage .
And then I did.
Every Christmas came along and happened and everyone was happy and I have photos to prove it !
None of them show me, half lying on the sofa, circles under my eyes, hair standing on end, listening for the chime of the oven timer to tell me the Turkey needs basting.
Only the children, smiling, busy with their new gifts, trying on new clothes, listening to new music, my husband looking at his new gifts.
I miss every minute of it.
I miss those babies, I miss those houses and I miss it being Cold at Christmas !
It was not long ago that I was complaining about how cold it was and I still had to find stocking stuffers, now it is hot and there are no stockings to stuff.
Enjoy your holidays ( I know you will) ... they go by in the Blink of an Eye.