Monday, December 28, 2009

The Christmas She Didn't Want Presents

Mommy did not get up at 5:30 a.m. Christmas morning to wrap the last gifts.

She did not have visions of the three of us drinking hot chocolate and eating cinnamon rolls while reading the last Jesse tree devotional, then gathering around to watch Esmé gratefully open her presents while listening to Christmas music.

Esmé had not stayed up til almost midnight the night before, and she did not get up at 7:45 a.m. while Mommy was still trying to make the cinnamon rolls. After all, she is a morning person and does not like getting up early. (Translation: She always gets up at the crack of dawn for fear of missing something, but she is definitely NOT a morning person.)

Mommy did not holler at Pappa to wake up, over and over, to join in the festivities.

Esmé did not insist on watching a DVD upon waking. She of course was delighted to color her Jesse tree coloring page while Mommy read and did not throw it all to the ground and trample on it.

When Mommy gave up on the devotional idea and tried to point Esmé toward the wrapped presents under the minuscule tree, saying she was sure there was a DVD under there somewhere, Esmé did not kick around a pile of presents, saying "I don't want presents! I don't like presents!"

When Esmé finally picked out and unwrapped a Care Bears DVD with a little foam Care Bear included, Pappa did not grouse that he had been awoken to sit around and watch Care Bears.

Esmé did not bring the little Care Bear into the kitchen (where Mommy was finishing the cinnamon rolls) three minutes into the DVD with its head torn off. And of course, Mommy had super glue readily available to glue that cute little head right back on.

The cinnamon roll dough did not turn out flat due to dead yeast. Esmé loves cinnamon rolls and happily ate hers, not requesting any candy. And Mommy did not abandon the hot chocolate idea and drink a Monster instead.

And with all the happiness going on, Mommy snapped lots of Christmas photos, so we are showing you all the happy photos here today!
Enough Not Me! Things did start to improve. While the cinnamon rolls were baking, Esmé happily helped Mommy make the Happy Birthday Jesus cake, which of course had to be frosted pink. And she was ultimately appreciative of her presents. She just opened them up very slowly - she didn't get through them all until the afternoon. We lounged around and watched DVDs in the morning, then spent sometime outside on (or near) the schoolhouse in afternoon. And the Jesse tree devotional was read, and Esmé enjoyed putting the last ornament up.

Mommy's notes: I initially wasn't going to post anything about this, especially after reading about how wonderful everyone else's Christmases turned out. But it does seem a little funny after the fact, and I figured I should memorialize the time Esmé didn't want presents - who knows when that will happen again?!

I did learn a few things...
  • That "unwrap and read a book each night of December idea" that apparently works so well for other families? Didn't work so well for us, since Esmé was jaded with the idea of gifts by Christmas.
  • When you work so hard on toning down the materialistic aspect of Christmas throughout the season, you shouldn't expect your little one to be all excited by it...
  • Cheap flimsy wrapping paper is best. The expensive metallic kind is hard for little ones to open.
  • If she's not a morning person, don't expect her to be one on Christmas day, either.
  • Don't hold on to traditions because YOU'VE always done things that way, or because everyone else does things that way. Do whatever works for YOUR family.
  • Happy birthday Jesus cake? That's a definite on next year's to-do list.


Secret Mom Thoughts said...

Sounds like a good Christmas even if the little one didn't want gifts.

Pam, mom, honey, said...

thank you so much. so funny about the waking up time. my kids who are always up super early all slept until after 9

Healthy & Happy said...

Yep, definately the chocolate she was missing! :). I didn't open my presents until noon either Esmé, even with Chocolate!

Miss Bloggy Pants said...

LOL! That was a wonderful read :) My kids weren't all the gung-ho about opening presents either...until they managed to find Hot Wheels in one of them :D

Melanie said...

the birthday cake is an adorable idea! This year was the first that my daughter was interested in opening presents! She hadn't opened anything since her 2nd Bday on Dec 26th of last year.

This was a good Christmas for you, full of memories like every other one will be :)

Infant Bibliophile said...

I had been planning to do the wrap a book thing next December, and that is a great point! Definitely gives me pause as to whether to try it or not. Also a great point about teaching them not to focus on the material aspects, but still wanting them to be excited. This parenting stuff it tricky. My son handled Christmas day well, but I had to laugh when he wouldn't let us open one present on Christmas Eve (as had always been my and my husband's tradition growing up). Apparently I had drilled "open kissmas day!" into his head, because he just kept saying that.

Prasti said...

i'm glad you decided to post about your christmas experience :). i think it's kinda cool that it took her almost the whole day to open all the presents. i think emma would have been happy to open just 1 gift and her stocking. it sounds like you all had a memorable christmas day :)

ShEiLa said...

I can definitely tell by this post that unlike the rest of us in the world... your family had the PERFECT Christmas and everything flowed smoothly. ;)

I wouldn't worry too much... the more you plan the bigger chance for the plan to fail. Try no to have ANY expectations then when things are good... you can be pleasantly surprised.


I Am Boymom said...

Thank you for posting your Christmas experience, it is real and honest and a little bit humorous and probably much more reflective of what many of us experience from time to time when we try to plan the perfect Christmas celebration. And it will be a great story for Esme when she grows up.

I didn't write about our Christmas day either...not our best Christmas. It happens. However, I am totally doing the Birthday Cake for Jesus next year. Even though my boys are older, it will be a great way to bring more spirituality into our Christmas celebration.

Wifey said...

Love your list breaking things down ... Love the Jesus cake, too!

Happy Holidays!

Winks & Smiles,

Pepper said...

Don't worry Zane is the same way. As we were going to our Christmas eve festivities Mommy really wanted Christmas Music, but Zaney wanted his Mickey Mouse CD. So all along the way he was yelling that he, "No like Christmas! No Christmas!"
I just had to laugh and file this away for future Christmases.

I'm glad your day did turn out good. And here is a belated Merry Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from Zane and I!!