I got the desk I wanted from Santa plus the Kids Smart Tracker GPS Watch I wanted from Mummy & Daddy!
As much as I have probably said or thought this every year since Emelia was born, this truly was the best Christmas yet! She’s gotten old enough to spend the month of December properly overwhelmed with excitement. As well, she has started to ask the questions that show us she is using critical thought to process and challenge her own belief in the magic that is this season. It’s obvious that the discussion at school among her friends has turned to whether Santa is real—especially from those kids with older siblings. The capper was when she said to me this week, “Daddy you have to tell me if Santa isn’t real so I will know what I have to do for my kid when I have one.” When I asked if she didn’t believe in Santa any more she said she did, but just in case she was wrong she wanted to be prepared. I told she wasn’t and Santa is part of the magic of the season.
Having to work all week, and Emelia in school it was the perfect way to lead into Christmas of you ask me. It kept Emelia preoccupied and it sped up getting to the exciting day by distracting us with every day life. But, as the week wore on, it became increasingly more difficult for Emelia to control her energy as she was having harder times falling asleep at night and kept waking up earlier and earlier. By the time Saturday rolled around and Danielle & I off work, and Emelia no school, our intent to sleep in as long as we could was quickly kiboshed with Emelia’s early rise. I got up with her and let Danielle squeeze out a tiny bit more sleep. But the second Danielle was up Emelia was chomping at the bit to get our last Christmas errands done and over to Mom & Dad’s to meet up with the family for Christmas Eve!
The best part of the gathering at Mom & Dad’s was that the Welland Teeters were able to come down and spend a few days with us. As much as Emelia was over the moon about her older cousin Amy being here, we were all delighted that Linda was going to be able to make it down given her battle with cancer and the rigours of her chemotherapy. They were due to spend Christmas Day and a couple days thereafter with us which was great. The Christmas Eve tradition has typically been the night we get together as a family and Christmas Day tends to be the any of those around without other plans come over kind of evening. This year that flipped and the big day for all us to get together was Christmas Day dinner.
Christmas Eve we stayed the usual a little too late, and I ate a lot too much and we arrived home in time to get Emelia to bed and we weren’t too long after – of course after clearing the space for Santa to leave his goodies. And, as much we tried to convince Emelia that we didn’t need to be downstairs the second she woke, there she was standing in our doorway at six in the morning. The most we could delay her was thirty minutes in our bed before we had no choice but to get downstairs to see what was there. We definitely didn’t spring out of bed or down the stairs near as quick as Emelia wanted us to, but we at least made it there in front of her so we were able to catch her reaction to the Santa present – her beloved desk!
After she saw that, I showed Emelia a picture that I managed to snap in the middle of the night. Knowing all the belief questions she has been asking this year I found an app that helped us convince Emelia pretty resoundingly that there was reason to still believe. We told her about how we heard a noise downstairs in the middle of the night and when we went downstairs to see what it was and my phone which I had set up to catch Santa managed to capture Danielle & I as we found out the source of the noise. When I showed her the photo I could see the immediate surprise and amazement, but then as she studied it a bit further, I am not sure whether she didn’t have further questions… She certainly is getting to the time and age where skepticism turns into pretending rather than belief for fear of losing the present haul. One thing is for certain, until she flat out acknowledges it, I am going to ride this out for as long as it lasts!
To say Emelia was pleased with her presents is most certainly an understatement. She squealed and smiled ear-to-ear with pretty much every single present. She loved her watch and put it on almost immediately even though we hadn’t sorted out completely how to get it to work. And then the second she was done unwrapping everything she immediately shifted her focus to getting her desk brought upstairs so she could reorganize her room and plan all the ways she was going to have fun at it. We lost her up in her room for an hour or two which gave Danielle and I time relax and slow down a bit downstairs.
For Christmas, Danielle and Emelia surprised the heck out of me getting me the Soda Stream soda maker that I have wanted for a couple of years and the propane fire pit that I have been wanting ever since seeing our camp friends Chris & Christa show up with at Bon Echo when we were in a fire ban. As much as we may use the fire pit for that, I really was looking for it to bring the campground to our side yard for evenings we’re at home and not out in Wolfie. I was completely surprised by this one—a thoughtful gift that will give me many more happy memories of sitting around a fire on a cool night with the two ladies who matter the most to me (and anyone else who wants to enjoy it with us).
As I sit back and reflect on this Christmas as the first game of the World Junior Hockey Championships is on the boob-tube with Canada playing Russia, I feel pretty damed content with how this Christmas turned out. And, as I do every year, I rest assured that this was better than last year—something I didn’t think possible, or necessary. And that is fine by me!
What a wonderful week! The entire week was a build up to this weekend. The entire week at school there was a different theme for clothes and activities to really build to the big day. At school Emelia had a potluck, party and secret Santa exchange within her class. All in all it was an festive and fun-filled week for her and her friends. To add to the day time activities we had a lot going on at night, the biggest one that made her dad and I so proud was going to Merrymount this week to bring the massive amount of donations that she organized with her best friends. The centre was kind enough to give us a full tour that gave the girls a real idea of where their donations would be used. The girls were really touched by everything that this amazing centre does for families in the city that I know they will want to be part of another donations drive in the future.
The other big event in Emelia’s world this week was her annual gymnastics Christmas party. The gym she trains at throws an amazing party for the competitive teams each year and the girls just have an amazing time. The parents in Emelia’s training group have all become good friends through our years of the girls training and while the girls were at the party the parents went out for our own festive celebrations. With all that was going on this past week before we knew it the Friday was here, I had my annual daycare Christmas party and Emelia wrapped up with school. Emelia and I got spoiled this year from all my amazing daycare families. Each and everyone one of them not only made me feel incredibly special they made our little girl feel just as loved.
And just like that the weekend was here and the real festivities began. John had the entire Christmas weekend off so we got to spend lots of time as a family and even more time with the Teeter side of the family. Christmas eve was at Helen and Doug’s place with most of the family. There was lots of laughs and even more food! The kids had a great time and of course got spoiled by the family. Emelia was over the moon in love with all her gifts but even more in love with all the time with her family. We had to finally leave much later than we should have but got a very tired and excited little girl to bed. She crashed pretty quickly and John and I could finally get the presents upstairs and then get to bed ourselves.
And then came Christmas morning, as always at the crack of dawn! Each year I say this is the most excited Emelia has been for Christmas and every year she gets more and more into the holidays. What I loved this year was her want to give presents as much as she wanted to receive them. She wanted to be very involved in every gift chosen for both myself and John. And she was so excited to see our reactions to the gifts she helped choose. She was very involved with John picking just about everything that I received this year and she really listened. She and I had puttered around the mall over the last few weeks and she was quietly listening to what I said I really liked and I have to say she really nailed it. She picked everything that I loved and I adore them all. And I would say from her reactions to her gifts this year she was very happy with all that we chose for her, she asked how we remembered the little things we got her for Christmas and how did we know she would love them, I said we listen to you and what you love and take our own mental notes. So I would say everything was a huge hit for her this year.
Once we were done opening our gifts we had a lazy breakfast and spent the day together just enjoying our time together. After getting some rest we got ready and headed back to Helen and Doug’s for supper. This time we were joined by the whole family as well as David, Linda and their kids. This year more than any other it was special to have the whole family together. Not only have we added another member of the family this year but we had a holiday with Linda and their family. To say this year has been a hard one on their family would be an understatement. What this year has taught all of us is that family is the most important, that spending time together is the best gift you can give during the holiday seasons. I cherish John’s family more than words can express. So having this Christmas together as a full family is more than we could have dreamed of.
Today John had to return to work but with Emelia staying with her cousins at her grandparents I snuck over to grab Emelia and Amy so we could have a girls day together. We braved Masonville and let Amy do some shopping. She had a great time and I loved seeing the girls have a great time together. Emelia just idolizes her older cousin so to have this special time together really makes her so happy.
It was a crazy couple days but being busy with family and celebrating the holidays with those you love is the best kind of crazy! Hopefully the next few days are a bit lazier and I am most looking forward now to the upcoming weekend when John and I have 3 full days off together and we can spend a ton of time as a family of 3!
Hope everyone had an amazing Christmas with those who you cherish! Merry Christmas from the Teeter Pod and we will see you in 2017!