Monday, December 25, 2006

Merry merry...

Merry Christmas and Happy Boxing Day to the Aussies of the group...

Well, the day has been done. It started just before 5 am with me puttering around with Liam. Didn't sleep all that well due to a cough and stuffy nose but, par for the course, i guess. The tree and livingroom were all decked out. We had put all the presents under the tree, and next to it was Raelin's gargantual present, a set of playstands that Kevmo built in his shop. His were nicer and bigger than the ones offered in the catalogues and at Raelin's school. Not our intention, but they are pretty impressive. Anyway, they were set up next to the tree with the diningroom table pushed into the corner to make room.

We had actually tried to downsize it this year, believe it or not. We made pretty much all her gifts- the playstands, and then i sewed a bunch of doll clothes (a gift to myself as well, to keep her from raiding Liam's clothes), and i made her an apron to go with a kid's cookbook... anyway, a few other small things. So, on Christmas Eve day i'm thinkin' on what we have and suddenly realize that we do not have anything that can be from Santa. She knew Kevin had been working in the shop so i personally thought she would see right through that and not buy that the stands were from Santa. She also knew I'd been sewing a ton. I thought we needed one thing that she had been asking for to be from S.

So off i trekked on X-mas eve day, Liam in tow, to a toy store to get this MagnaDoodle thing that you can draw on over and over again and erase with the sweep of a little plastic lever. She actually has a small one but it only draws in gray and she'd been asking for one that draws in color *forever*. Perfect for Santa. I searched the toy store to no avail. I did, however, see a small child's guitar set off by itself on an empty shelf. I grabbed it thinking that if i didn't find the doodlethingamabob we'd give her the little guitar... something she had also mentioned, but not much.
anyhoo... i figured we'd return the guitar if i found the DTAMB (doodlethingamabob) cuz surely she didn't need 2 gifts from Santa in addition to everything else (from us, plus grandparents). Well, Reny's (local Maine got-everything store) had something kinda similar...but it was more like painting. Whatever. i grabbed it. It was 12 bucks and close enough. I was trying hard to resist that last minute, get exactly what they need- urge.
Home i toted the new things and showed them to Kevin. he thought we should give both. ok, fine. Ribbon around the lil' guitar, slid under the tree. Ribbon the handle of the DTAMB, under the tree. Not wrapped.
So about 5:45 am comes along and we hear R's voice. She shuffles out of her room and *completely* bypasses the towering playstands and exclaims, "kelly, look! a guitar!" she snatches it up and parks herself on the couch and coos over the red plastic pick and proceeds to play away in la-la land, so enthralled with her little guitar that almost didnt' even make it under the tree and *does not see the playstands* which, is like trying to avoid looking at the Eifle Tower or something. A good, oh, 5-8 minutes later (solid, with these things like 5 feet away from her) her mouth drops and she screws up her nose and says," Look at that!! They had to move the table away to the torner (corner)!" *Then* she gets up and goes between them and under the silk canopy, still toting the guitar. She looks around a bit, sits on the bench, and plays her guitar.

are we raising a folk-music playing hippie or what? (with a little electronica love on the side...oh, and Phish too, which she heard for the first time the other day and literally sent her bouncing around the room.)

It was great. how cute is it that she is so excited to play the guitar just like daddy? adorable.

she definitely came around to the playstands and all the other garb that she unwrapped and played with and there was only one mini-overload meltdown when she face planted pushing a new wooden stroller from my mom and step-dad. ooops.

a nap cured the fussies and all in all, it was a nice day. Liam had a ball, both with all the paper and ribbons and boxes as well as the loot he was given- a pretty substantial haul for a 7 month old, i have to say. But all really nice, thoughtful gifts. we are appreciative and grateful, both for ourselves and on behalf of our kids who can't really express that yet.

now for the purge of old toys more or less forgotten. i know some folks who have a "one in, one out" rule. I am not so hard and fast as that, but i do pass on things that are never asked about or have proved themselves to have little play value. It keeps me sane.

So another Christmas done. I hope you and yours had a nice day, however you spend it. One of these years i hope the kids opt for forgoing gifts and spending the money to go somewhere warm (well, warmer than global warmed Maine, that is) and hopefully that is at an age when they sleep and we actually have to get *them* up to have breakfast and enjoy a nice walk on the beach.

But until then... i'll enjoy these memories of paper carnage and carefree strumming...


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