The Most Wonderful Time of the Year
Our family has been on quite a ride for the past nine months, as I was busy growing our little baby boy in mah belly. It was an eventful and complicated pregnancy, chock full of calls to the midwives, trips to the hospital and sleepless nights. He was due to arrive on Christmas Day, but after too much adventure in the womb, he decided to take one more complicated bow and come 3 1/2 weeks early. That, in and of itself, is another post for another time.
But take a look at this gorgeous kiddo. Can you stand the cuteness?
Despite the surprise-factor that has completely interrupted all of our baby and holiday prep, Sean and I have really been trying to maintain some normalcy for the iToddler, keeping to her regular schedule and really enjoying getting into the holiday spirit.
Well, we try.
Oh, and the day we decided to make dozens upon dozens of cookies...also turns out to be Jesus' birthday party at her weekday club...complete with singing (or SOBBING, in my child's case...sugar crash).
And cake and ice cream.
Anyway, tonight we thought it might be fun to take the kiddos to see Santa at the mall, and then to a local light display (which the iToddler has been to twice and LOVES).
Despite the fact that Sean and I had decided to not do the Santa thing with our kids, Mickey Mouse decided to introduce the iToddler to Santa in a seemingly innocuous episode. The title was something about trains. It was 60 minutes long, and so our favorite episode. And Santa sneaks in toward the end.
Sneaky little turds.
So now she recognizes (and loves) Santa. So we figured since we can't explain anything to her until next year (she's too young to really get it this year), we'd just embrace it this year. From a distance, Santa is pretty cool. In pictures and coloring books, magical. But in real life, up close?
Since Santa was a bust, we erased her memory with some dinner and then headed out to our local light display. At this point, it's been about two hours since I'd nursed the baby, and every thought or sight of him triggered letdown.
I was aching.
And the light display takes about 30-45 minutes to drive through, with no way out once you're in.
deep breath, we'll all survive. he's asleep. maybe he'll stay that way.
We pulled into the park and got in line. Cue the baby crying. Cue the tingling boobs. Cue the wet spots on the dress.
sigh. we'll be fine. it's only temporary and we're making memories! making MEMORIESSSS!
Once you're in the park, you turn your radio to a certain station and it plays background Christmas music. It's a nice little detail and really adds to the whole experience. So we turned on the radio to drown out the baby's cries, and set forth to enjoy the lights. First thing out of the iToddler's mouth was "I hear singing! Helllooooo yights! Helllloooo baby Jeeesusss!"
It was remarkably sweet.
The first song wrapped up when we were well into the park, watching thousands...millions of lights twinkling in different displays. It's gorgeous. The baby had stopped crying for a moment and my girl was completely beside herself in wide-eyed wonder. Sean held her tightly as she oohed and ahhed through the window at flickering snowflakes and ringing bells.
Then the second song started. It was some sort of Christmas version of Pachelbel's Canon in D. Now I should say, there are two things that are guaranteed to make me cry every time. Okay, that's a lie. Most things have the capacity to make me cry. But two of them are Pachelbel's Canon in D and kids singing.
And this stupid song has both.
SN: love me for embedding this because 3 notes into previewing this video I was already bawling and Sean's was cracking up laughing at me.
So I'm driving through the woods in a park with my girl cuddling up with her dad (which of course is absolutely beautiful to watch), my eyes filled with tears as this song is playing and I'm thinking "wow, am I one lucky girl", and then the baby starts to cry again.
And my boobs start to tingle and the milk comes down and he's crying and the iToddler is tapping me saying "mommy, baby needs nuh-nuhs. baby is SAD and you need to give him nuh-nuhs" and Sean is laughing at me because I'm crying and the baby is crying and the lights are magical and my dress has two wet spots in pretty conspicuous spots and the kids are singing to Pachelbel's stupid Canon and
THIS IS MAGICAL CHRISTMAS INSANITY, DAMMIT!
sigh. deep breaths.
And there are still like 3.25 of the 3.5 miles to go.
About 15 minutes later, my girl was leaning out the window, singing "Happy birthday, Jesus". Thank the Lord Pachelbel's Canon wasn't playing, because I was so. on. the. edge. Despite all our failings and chaos, we're doing something right since our two year-old gets what Christmas is all about.
The rest of the display was pretty uneventful, but at the end there was this arch where lighted presents fly from one side of the street to the other and my girl says, "Daddy, Mommy, there go presents! Presents for Jesus' birthday."
God love that little girl.
And then that damn song starts playing again. And the baby starts to cry again.
I'm not even kidding.
And I wouldn't trade that half hour (or the next 20 minutes we spent sitting in the dark parking lot of a random quilting supply store as I nursed my starving newborn) for all the perfect, uneventful moments of Christmas magic in the world.