Thursday, December 19, 2013

'Twas the Week Before Christmas

'Twas the week before Christmas, and all through the house, not a creature was silent, not even a mouse (well, not really a mouse, more like a cat, but rhyming and all those poetic nuances...).The children were nestled all snug in their beds, with giant buckets nestled next to their heads (because, you know, stomach flu).And I in my yoga pants, and dad in his work shoes had just settled in for a long nightly dance (scrubbing the kitchen floor and billing more hours--shame on your dirty minds). When what to my eyes did appear? An elf dressed in drag and eight tiny reindeer. (Hamilton Hank Holidae has had some pretty wild times this year--If I could keep him out of my heels and jewelry, we'd call the year a success).

It's the week before Christmas. My tree is up--and as of a few days ago, it's decorated too. The storage bins are stored--as of two days ago. And, sometime before Christmas Eve, I hope to get the polyester pine needles vacuumed from the rug.

Christmas season is busy. There's a lot of pressure to find the magic, and if you can't find the magic, to make it. I've tried.

Our elf, Hamilton Hank Holidae, is doing his best to bring magic to the household despite suffering from a wicked case of the Elfin Flu this week (which he passed along to the children). HHH has dyed the milk green, decorated our tree with panties and undies, and pooped chocolate chips in an effort to get Gigi potty trained (he really is magic!).

Of course, I blame the pressure that society places on moms to create magic for the fact that my children now believe that elves poop chocolate chips; Santa packages the elf poop year round; sells the elf poop in bags; and uses the proceeds to finance his annual around-the-world sleigh ride.

I welcome the peace that our little Lutheran school brings, and with it, the real Christmas story. We try to remember that Christmas isn't just Santa and elf poop. Gigi knows that baby Jesus is in the nativity scene, and RJ will tell you, "Sometimes people don't have a place to sleep, like Joseph. He had to lead the pilgrims all across the desert to find a room at the inn."

Ahem. Perhaps it's time to review the Christmas story one more time.

This year, the season is moving just as quickly as it always has. We've added a bout of stomach flu to the mix. I've thrown more than my share of hissy fits in bad traffic this week. Gigi was quick to tell me, "Mama, you can get your blanket." And RJ, my little philosopher, helped me remember, "Mom, I need to tell you something: you--are not in control. God is."

The house is a wreck, but I blame the elf. We've looked at Christmas lights--more than once. We baked cookies and made a birthday cake.After a hiatus, I started recording some of RJ's better one liners:

"When I grow up, I can drink whatever I want. If I want a glass of wine, I can have a glass of wine." True wisdom; I've found more than my fair share of holiday magic with a glass of wine in hand.

Christmas Eve is a week away. I'm anxiously awaiting HHH's nightly antics (because if that little monster spills sugar or syrup one more time, I'm going to lock his jolly little self out on the patio).

In the meantime, I remember that I am not in control. And no matter how how real life seems to me, it's magic for these little ones right now:

(See that angel in the floor? Yeah. She's covering a hairball. We're not perfect. But she looks pretty magical.)

He was just a little pumped for his little Lutheran school Christmas program. He told me he liked his sweater. I feel like there's not a big chance of him being a lumberjack when he grows up.

This. This is the most perfect Christmas program live action shot ever taken.

He's an old soul. As in, a 45-year old enjoying coffee after a long morning on conference calls. Or, a 5-year old enjoying the traditional drink of Christmas programs past and present: red Koolaid.

Another program, another night with the bestie.

Early Christmas surprises from Gma Cathy gave mom a whole hour of free time--obviously not spent picking up the living room.

Treating her right. Gigi is learning the joys of a small cup of tea on a cold afternoon. (I find my magic where I can.)

And, for at least one more night, HHH has managed to bring more magic--and hopefully a small fire extinguisher to put out what appears to be a moderate elfin fireball.

I, for one, am happy that I am not in control of this holiday season.
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