I didn't really think Max would "get" Christmas until maybe next year, but he's all over it. Every time he sees something he wants in a store or in a catalog he points to it and asks "Christmas?!?" excitedly. Even the scare tactics of being on the "naughty" list are working. He's fully aware that there's a day in the near future that he'll be receiving gifts. And that he better not pout in the meantime.
We took him to see Santa last Monday. On our way there I told him Santa is the one who puts the presents under the tree and that he should think of what he wanted to ask for. Max put his index finger on his chin and said "Hmmm..." and then announced "Ball, please!!" in a very self-assured way. Ridiculously cute and my heart burst with pride that he thought to say "please" without me prompting him. It's the little things...
So we arrived at Crown Center after a very exciting ride with Max yelling "Christmas lights!" and "Yay, Christmas!" just about every minute. We were smarter than last year and went on a Monday at 4pm and only had to wait 2 minutes as opposed to 2 hours.
Max was literally jumping up and down with anticipation until....we placed him on Santa's lap. PURE TERROR.
|Kicking so frantically his feet could not be captured by the camera.|
As soon as we snapped a photo and got him off Santa's lap he panicked. "Ball?" he asked. "Ball please, Christmas?" He was suddenly regretting his hasty escape. I said, "It's ok, Santa knows what you want" Max seemed to trust me when I said this and went on to play in Crayola Land.
As we made our way to the car he suddenly was upset again. He said, "Ball we ah you?" (translation: Ball, where are you) and then burst into tears as I buckled him in his carseat. He thought Santa was going to give him a ball before he left. Poor guy. Christmas is so confusing.
Adding to the confusion are the multiple traditions we've created leading up to Christmas Day. I wonder if we're over doing it a little ;)
Hot Chocolate and Christmas lights:
Max couldn't get enough of his hot chocolate. Literally would not remove the sippy cup from his face for one decent picture. And Dada loved to have a reason to blare his Christmas music and scope out ideas for next year's display.The 12 Days of Christmas:
Max gets to open a new "12 Days" ornament and hang it on the tree each night leading up to Christmas Eve. We started it tonight because, well, he just couldn't stand those tempting little bags hanging in his playroom any longer. He was excited to hang up the partridge in a pear tree.
Max's very own Christmas tree:
We let Max get a little tree to put in his room and decorate with some of my old childhood ornaments. He is so proud of his little tree.
We also wrapped up a bunch of different Christmas books and put them under his tree. So he gets to open a "new" book every night at bedtime. This he absolutely loves even though they're all books he's had on his shelf all year. So far his favorites are "Llama Llama Holiday Drama", "Merry Christmas Curious George" and "Merry Christmas Stinky Face"
|Which one will it be, Momma?!|
The boys 2011 Christmas ornaments. I made Sullivan's "First Christmas" ornament like I did for Max last year. And Max made his own this year!
First snow of the season! I didn't realize he looked so much like Randy from "A Christmas Story" until I looked back at the photo :) If only I had wrapped an enormous scarf around his neck.
Not 100% sure what he's supposed to do with snow yet.
Phew! Ok, that's all for now. We've also been trying to teach Max what Christmas is REALLY about by asking him to pick out a toy from his playroom each day that he'd like to "share" with another child. At first he wasn't so keen on the idea, but we explained that we have to make room for new toys as well and that seemed to get him more in the giving spirit. We're collecting the toys in a bag and will donate them like we did last Christmas. One of these years he'll become aware of how truly blessed we are and that we need to share what we have with others every chance we get.