I originally posted this last year. It seems doubly true this year. My little elf as been so helpful this Christmas - and so insistent about what is done. We have been busily baking and decorating and shopping and wrapping and making sure everyone feels the joy of the season. It has been a very special year for me in a lot of ways. As the girl gets older she's a much bigger help and has more of her own opinions. What a joy it has been watching her grow.
I love Christmas. I love the decorating, the baking, the parties, the shopping, the cards, the music, the quiet time under the tree. My first job was at The Original Christmas Store. While I don't like to start at Halloween, I love the whole Christmas season.
In one of my former lives, I decorated stores, malls, and parties. I did it all year round, but there was always Christmas. When I left that life, I brought a lot of the accoutrements home with me. I have always gone completely overboard decorating the house. I like to pretend that I do it for everyone else. After all, we have Christmas at our house all day. We have people for breakfast and dinner. But I know the truth: it is really just for me. No one really comments or seems to care about the decorations. No one ever really helps much either. That is, until now.
My daughter has inherited the Christmas gene. She loves it. She went out with me all over town to hang everyone else's decorations. She helped in any way she could. She wanted to be a part of it.
Sunday we finally started decorating at our house. She was beyond thrilled. Quite frankly, this year I was just a little tired. We had a grand time putting up the tree. Ours is a tall and varied tree. It has gold beads and tapestry bows on it. It also has a strange mix of ornaments that the kids made, that I made, that people have given us, and that we have collected over the years. It really looks quite elegant from a distance, but when you get close to it you see that it is a family tree. I like it. So does my girl.
I went ahead and put some garland on the mantle. I announced I was tired and maybe we could finish tomorrow. I was told to sit down and rest. She then pulled the ladder up to the mantle and proceeded to decorate the garland herself. And may I say she did an excellent job. After we finished the mantle, we called it a night.
Monday we put out all the little figurines and knick-knacks on all the tables. She then came down with a fever and slept most of the day. Now, I usually drape garland down the stair rail and hang it over the window and door frames. Like I said, I go all out. While she was down for the day, I secretly thought we could just forgo all that this year. Our tree was lovely and together with the knick-knacks, it just seemed like enough.
When the girl came down this morning, I said, "It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas around here." Her response? "Not really."
What? She pointed out that we usually have garland over there and over there and up there and and and.... *sigh* I have created a Christmas monster in my own image. While she watched a show on TV this evening, I went down and added four more garlands. That is only half of what I normally would do, but it was enough. When she came down she I got a hug and kiss and a "thank you for decorating the house, Mommy."
I am so thankful to have someone to decorate for and with. Just like me, she carefully opens each tissue paper bundle and remembers it from last year. We make quite a pair. We are sentimental fools and love every minute of it.