This Christmas was like no other. Honestly. I am not exaggerating.
It’s not because there was snow falling. We had snow the year Bubba was born. . . 1/4 of an inch but it was snow.
This year I slept through Christmas. (pretty much)
The day began like you would expect (if you have ever read this blog before). Little came dashing into our room at 6:15 AM screaming out, “It’s Christmas! It’s Christmas! Merry Christmas, Mom!” She proceeded to fling her arms around my neck and nuzzle her head against my face, per usual. This scene ended with Little tucked between her daddy and me with her FREEZING toes pressed into my back.
Before one could say, “Your toes are freezing!” there was a sound in the hallway of two other doors opening. No other sound. Just two doors opening followed by a pregnant pause as the two other children weighed the options of waiting to be called out of their rooms or risking it since Little had already paved the way. I put them out of their misery pretty quickly by calling out, “Merry Christmas, Bubba! Merry Christmas, KB!” Within moments there were two more bodies on the bed.
Little took this opportunity to announce that she had re-thought our schedule for the morning. See, the day before, KB had laid out what she thought would be the perfect plan for our Christmas morning:
1. Say Merry Christmas.
2. Have breakfast.
3. Read the Bible.
4. Run through the wrapping paper (something we had done in the old house but wouldn’t be possible/necessary in this new house).
5. Open presents.
Watching my seven-year old organize our day had been all the Christmas present I would need, mind you, but what sounded so great to Little on Wednesday, no longer sounded acceptable on Thursday. She announced that the order of our day had been changed and she was thinking that now it would be:
1. Say Merry Christmas
2. Open Presents
3. Eat breakfast
4. Read the Bible.
I took this as a teachable moment and let my executing of the REAL plan remind them of who was Mamma. We did what we always do and we started the day on the bed, reading the story of the Savior’s birth, and singing Joy to the World (horribly).As soon as Honey read the words, “Now in those days. . . ” I got tears in my eyes. I had my first “Daddy always did this” moment and I thought the day was sunk. But the tears were short-lived because, even though you would thinking hearing us sing would bring more tears to one’s eyes, the truth is it just makes me smile and laugh. Little is just so exuberantly off-key.
We headed down to the tree and opened some of the gifts.It was just after KB opened her horse that I realized every muscle ached and I was so cold. I went and put my coat on and just kept watching the fun around me.This year was different for our kids in that it was the first Christmas where we didn’t have some contact with Memom and Pop on or before the holiday. We have either been with them, they have been with us, or they have sent a truck load of gifts our way with friends traveling from Birmingham. This year there was no Pop, no Memom, no friends coming our way from Alabama – that meant a more controlled number of gifts under the tree.
We had decided we would continue with our plan of giving the kids three gifts each (if it was good enough for Jesus, it is good enough for a Kicklighter). There was also a gift from a sibling, a gift from Memom, a gift from Grandpa Jeriald/Grandma Linda, and a gift from some family member that had drawn their name. I fully expected my son to add that up, announce that everyone got seven presents, and then proceed to tell me all the things that meant he couldn’t possibly have gotten or how unfair it was. But, no! A Christmas miracle . . our kids were content and happy and GRATEFUL. I tightened my coat around me and went to fix breakfast while they played with one of the three gifts we had opened already.Of course we had happy drink in honor of Pop. I told the kids, “Every year Pop made us happy drink. He loved this stuff!.” At this point Bubba said, “I wish he was here to tell us that.” Okay – more tears. Again short lived. About now you are thinking that this story is taking much longer than it should. You are probably right. I’ll try to pick it up.
After breakfast we Facetimed (?) with the family in Birmingham, opened the remaining gifts, and headed downstairs to open stockings. This was the first year we had a mantle on which to hang the stockings . . . it was so Norman Rockwell.By the time stockings were empty, I was done. I looked at Honey and told him I needed to lie down. After that I remember asking for more blankets at one point, then wishing they weren’t so heavy because they made my aches ache, and then wishing for more blankets. I pretty much slept through the rest of Christmas.
There was a texting conversation with my friend Amy about a flu bomb (essential oils) and then me telling Honey how to make a flu bomb. There was a Facetime call from China. . . I don’t remember much of that. I tried to eat but literally tasted a teaspoon of each item before heading back to bed. I slept until morning.
Merry Christmas to me.
Don’t let me mislead you – I am okay with the way the day went. I am thankful that I wasn’t awake to worry about my mom or cry about my dad. I am thankful my kids had such a great attitude through the day. I am thankful it wasn’t worse and I am thankful for the flu bomb and how quickly I recovered. It won’t go down in the history books as our best Christmas but it won’t go in as the worse.
How was yours?
I am so sorry you were sick!! Hope you are feeling 100% by now! Your kids must have been SO excited–I can tell by the giant smiles on their faces, especially KB. So fun! I can tell you did a great job of making the day special, even in the midst of the hard, but sweet, remembrances of your daddy.
We had a good Christmas morning here and then traveled to Will’s parents, where it was a bit quieter for a few days. Will went to Urgent Care on Friday and then I took Hannah on Sunday. Both probably had just a cold/respiratory virus, but both were prescribed antibiotics/steroids.
I love your description of “not the best Christmas, but not the worst either”–kind of sums up ours, too :). Stay warm in the midst of all that snow and cold weather!