Holy HO-HO Santa was here!

IMG_1100I got the American Girl Doll I wanted for-like-ever from Santa Claus!! Her name is Kit and I love her!

IMG_1239He said

Well as quickly as it got here, it is just gone at the same torrid pace. Months of planning, saving money and getting ready really goes by in the blink of an eye. Thankfully for someone as time management challenged as myself I have Danielle the uber planner/organizer at my side to make sure everything happens when and where it should. This year was no exception and I am thoroughly convinced that if it were up to me, Christmas would be more of a piecemeal affair that took place over several weeks… sometime in May. Thankfully we have yet to find out if my intuition is right.

IMG_1251My work schedule this year played out wonderfully giving me Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and Boxing Day as days off to make the most out of the holiday. The plans saw us at Mom & Dad’s with the whole family for Christmas Eve, and then back there Christmas Day for roast turkey dinner. And, Boxing Day was a day with nothing to do at all, except to enjoy the time off together with Danielle and Emelia — we had no shopping and no where we had to be! It was a delight. The added bonus was, for the first time in quite a few years, we had the Welland Teeters here for a couple days before they headed back.

IMG_1241The curve ball in all of it saw me and my four brothers go off to see the new Star Wars movie together (with our kids off course, and any of the interested significant others) in the same way we did 38 years ago when it came out. We figured out that Emelia was roughly the same age I was when I saw the original movie for the very first time. It was really special to be out enjoying the same nerdiness we did as kids, with our kids who felt the same.

IMG_1250Now, for Christmas morning and being able relive our own excitement and awe through the eyes of Emelia… Every year she gets older I worry a little more about when the magic of this time of year will give way to doubt and disbelief. And every year she shows us in grande fashion that this is not that year. This year was no exception—the way she so wholesomely subscribes to our visits from Charlie (The Elf on the Shelf) to the way she rationalized leaving room in Santa (and Mommy Daddy’s workload/wallet) by removing presents in lieu of getting them to less fortunate children were glaring reminders of what this season is all about: belief, trust, and love.

IMG_1240I will never tire of nor remove space from my internal memory banks for the images and movies of Emelia coming down the stairs every single Christmas. One part the trepidatious girl, one part the energy of an army of kids. The look on her face as she sees the load under the tree and the magic of Christmas cascades from every fibre of her being. In that moment I swear the Clausometer goes into overload. This year was no exception – especially as those eyes locked on the chair where Santa had left the present from him: her beloved Kit Kitridge doll!

FullSizeRender 5Proof that she is not 100% my child, Emelia spent the better part of an hour to open all of her presents where I would had them undone inside of five minutes. She wanted to absorb each item, check out what it did and maybe even play with it a bit. Aside from the American Girl doll I would say the surprise hits this year were the Osmo game/learning system we found for her iPad and then the Daddy/Daughter night out to go see the London Knights play hockey in January—something she’s been asking for some time for because ‘Daddy likes hockey‘. (No complaints here)

Despite Amazon and the LCBO’s best efforts to ruin surprises for Christmas that Danielle had in store for me, I was totally surprised at how well Danielle did this year for me. She got me:

  • FullSizeRender 4a bottle of the world’s best rated whiskey
  • the new Wilco record I have been needing
  • whiskey stones to chill the world’s best whiskey
  • Fancy-schmancy record themed socks
  • A Bill Murray book that I didn’t know existed
  • A set of the pics from our family photos last summer finally printed and framed to hang in the house

To say I was spoiled is an understatement. She mixed a great combinations of things I was looking for with total surprises that I didn’t know existed and totally love!

FullSizeRender 3Yesterday was Boxing Day and we got to be the laziest we have been in a very long time! It didn’t help that I had finally succumbed to the nasty sinus and throat business that Danielle had been battling. But having that whole day to do nothing was the last real treat of Christmas to unwrap. And being able to spend almost the entire day in the clothes I woke in was probably the most potent tool in battling off this throaty fun.

FullSizeRender 6Today was back to the world of work and post Christmas at the store. Danielle and Emelia resigned to finding themselves some groceries and what other fun they could. With my work day wrapped, supper had and as I look to recount this week, Christmas and seasonal funning in our weekly blog, I am filled with joy at what an amazing time it is at Christmas and how much better it had become because of that wonderful not-so-little-any-more, eight year old girl that continually fills our tanks every single day with love… no matter how challenging she can be at times (and like her Daddy!)

 

FullSizeRender 8She said

What an incredible week!

The week started out with Emelia home with me with the daycare kids. To say the children were excited would be the understatement of the year. They were all full of Christmas joy and we filled our days with crafts, baking, music and movies.

FullSizeRender 7On Wednesday my last day of work before the holidays we had our big annual Christmas party with the daycare children. Once again the daycare parents spoiled me. I got incredible presents. The gifts included gift cards for the LCBO, some wine, a few gift cards for local restaurants, a spa package and a beautiful scarf and hat. The children were all so excited to come in to give me everything, the parents really made me felt special and loved for sure this year.

FullSizeRender 2The children were equally excited for our big party. We had a big pyjama  part—each of the kids came in their Christmas jammies and we had such a great day! And, it was a busy one! But, equally, a great day:

  • there was crafting
  • baking
  • more crafting
  • dancing
  • some cookie decorating
  • and all in all lots of fun.

The kids loved their gifts once again and it was such a special day.

FullSizeRender 2Once Wednesday night wrapped up, it started me off on a much-needed and anticipated 11 days off. Yes 11 days! I am not sure who was more excited – me or Emelia. She does still love the daycare kids but I would be lying to say she wasn’t more than a little happy to know she has her mommy all to herself for the majority of her Christmas break. She doesn’t get that very much during the daycare day so to give this to her I feel was the best gift I could have given her.

FullSizeRender 3Once the kids were gone she and I snuck out and got some very last minute things done since John had to work the close for work.

And now on to Christmas. Our celebrating always start with Christmas eve with John’s family. The family gatherings are always filled with laughs, lots of food and amazing time with the people we love the most. It was a full house with all the family together. It is my most favourite day of the year, seeing Emelia surrounded by family who just adore her and she adores them. I cannot ever express how much John’s family means to me, they have been there for me and our family in the darkest of moments and there to celebrate the incredible moments. This Christmas it really meant more than anything that they were there for all of us. We have so much to celebrate in our lives and to celebrate it with the people we love the most is what Christmas is all about.

FullSizeRender 4Once dinner was done we moved on to the kids most anticipated time of the night – the presents. For Emelia once again it was almost all about American Girl. She got totally spoiled, and she was so over the moon excited. It took a bit of convincing but we finally got our girl home in time for us to get our presents out under the tree so Santa could do his job and arrive to bring treasures for Emelia.

FullSizeRender 5And man oh man she got spoiled once again. It took a fair bit of creative planning but I think we managed to pull of the perfect Christmas for Emelia. She loved everything. As John mentioned she loved her much anticipated Kit Kitridge American Girl doll from Santa, but she also loved everything she got from us. She loves the iPad game we got her. She lost her marbles at the new gym bag for her elite team for gymnastics. She got some adult colouring books for one of her favourite movies: Harry Potter.

FullSizeRender 8But, the big hit beyond the game and the doll is the doll  bunkbeds we got for her—she loves them. She has wanted to move her two existing American girls into one room and with that we worked on setting up a room for her new doll. With the help of my talented friend Angela she also has some beautiful crochet blankets for all of her doll beds. One more than one occasion she claimed it as the best Christmas ever, and I have to say baby girl I completely agree.

FullSizeRender 6She wasn’t the only one who got spoiled, I got the one item at the top of my wish list, my Instant Pot which is an electronic pressure cooker. Yes I know its a practical gift and it went against everything John wants to do for me for Christmas. But he put aside his hate of buying practical gifts because he knew how much I wanted this pot. And I have to say already it is living up to the hype my good friend Jude put on it. She told me I would adore it and man do I ever. So thank you John and Emelia!

FullSizeRender 7Oh the fun was not even close to over — we still had more Christmas to come. After she played with her toys and I got our contribution of the potluck cooked and organized, we packed up to head back to Helen and Doug’s for Christmas dinner. Once again, the entire family was together sharing tons of laughs and incredible food. The entire Teeter family spread around the main level of the house find anywhere they could to sit for dinner.

FullSizeRenderOnce we were done dinner we dashed off to see the newest Star Wars. I have to say this is hands-down my favourite of all the Star Wars movies – even over the original movies of our childhood. The story was incredible and I love that the strong lead in the movie was a young woman, and Emelia took to her instantly. She loves Rey! With a tired but happy girl in tow we popped quickly back to Helen and Doug’s and then back to home to get our very tired little girl to bed.

The rest of the weekend was about relaxing, spending as much time as a family and for me to take a big project around this house which is to organize the house and purge, purge, purge.

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