You know your kids are grown up when they no longer care about decorating for Christmas. When the boys were young they would pester me about WHEN the tree would go up and wanting to decorate it themselves. I have to confess that I used to be a huge Grinch who would put off decorating until I had to and then pulled the damn thing down the day after Christmas. I must also confess that I would let them decorate the tree and then after they went to bed I rearranged the whole tree. See…I have this thing. Regardless Christmas was for the kids and I would always make sure it was fun for them and would make a big deal out of all of it and our little family traditions.
Since marrying an official Christmas elf I admit I’ve come around a little and we decorate the first weekend in December and generally leave it up until New Year. The leaving it up part most likely stems from laziness more than anything because once the tree is bereft of presents it just doesn’t hold the same appeal for me. The season feels so O.V.E.R. but again the thought of hauling all the boxes back out and placing each ornament in its designated spot seems like work dammit!
This past weekend was our decorating day and though Sean was home he declined to participate (he barely did last year) and Chris was at a party, not that he’s done it in years either. I made a promise to myself a long time ago, not to make a big deal if the boys decided to forgo family events when they grow up. For one thing I HATED it when the guilt gun was pulled out and nobody should ever feel pressured to spend time with family, either you want to or you don’t. I am a realist, I know the boys have lives of their own and will want to be spending time with their girlfriends, eventually wives and more than likely the women in their lives WILL be feeling pressure to spend time with their parents. The kids will always be welcome but never obligated. That is unless Tom and I start going away for Christmas and then they’re on their own!
We do have one child that still enjoys Christmas decorating but for an entirely different reason; tree chewing.
She lights up like, well, a Christmas tree when the box first comes out of the closet. I’m not sure if she remembers what it looks like or the tree gives off some kind of familiar scent, but she’s howling and skipping around before Tom even opens it.
Once the tree is put together she will chew chew chew to her heart’s content. She will wake up from a nap and the siren song of prickly branches calls so loudly to her it is the first place she heads. She doesn’t eat it, not at all, she just likes to BITE it. We figure it must be the feel of the branches in her mouth she likes so much. In any case the lower branches are always kept decor-free just for this reason. I mean you can’t mess with your kid’s happiness right?
A running gag each year is Tom peeking under Santa’s gown. It is usually just a shot or two but this year Tom went all out and posed in a series for me.
Hahaha! I love my silly man.
I did get Sean to pose with Chilly the one-eyed snow man after a few “Moooooommmmmm my hair is a mess” comments and several eye rolls.
We got to hanging up the ornaments both old and new(ish) and poor Tom trying as he might not to “cluster” like ornaments together had me following behind him and moving them around some. I told you, it’s a thing.
I always like to do my decorating (okay honestly I take more pictures than I decorate but still) wearing my antlers, it is the one time of year I can wear antlers without getting funny looks. They are getting a little beat-up but I’m too attached to them to buy something new. Problem is, every time I bend forward the wonky things poke me in the eye.
Tom doesn’t like to wear the Santa hat for long because it gets flippin’ hot under there but he’s always sport enough to put it on for photos.
Bring on Christmas! We’re Ready!