Friday, January 16, 2015

I'm only a few weeks late, but hey! We had a major laptop malfunction that has temporarily been fixed with cables running out of all sides of it like IVs in a hospital, and each time I sit down to write I feel like I'm holding onto the hand of a friend, willing them to keep going. This little MacBook has been through it all with me. I've been busy trying to back up an enormous amount of pictures that date back to college and it's giving me all the feelings. I have yet to get to the newborn Evie portion - I'm sure I'll be a hormonal mess for a few days after that. Anyway, I'm back in business for a bit as long as the temporary fix holds out long enough for me to say 'no' to all the cute baby things (at least until said baby actually gets here) and opt for saving for a new computer instead.

Though it's been a few weeks, I couldn't help but share some bits of our Christmas.

I really didn't have high hopes for this Christmas - everything about our life is in waiting right now and Christmas has always been the time of year that makes me appreciate home the most. We have no home at the moment and I anticipated that making me a bit weepy, but I put on my Santa pants and made the best of it all. Before Ev and I left Albuquerque, we wandered the aisles of Target for half of a day planning out all the tiniest details of Christmas, down to a tiny Christmas tree with tiny twinkly lights. I packed it all into the back of our Jeep and felt a lot like I was driving the Grinch's sled off to Missouri. When we got here, we did all the traditional Christmas things that we always do and it wasn't quite as depressing as I thought it might be. I made the rookie mom mistake of telling Ev Christmas was coming soon, fully expecting her to shrug her shoulders and move on, but instead she lit up like a firecracker (or Christmas light) and asked me every morning and night when Christmas would be here. I didn't make the mistake of saying anything about presents; however, some kind of kid magic happened in which she instinctively knew that presents belonged under that tree and she kept shouting from the rooftops (or couch top), 'But where are the presents?!' We don't do Santa and even had a conversation along the lines of him being like a character in a book, so she was especially curious, and a bit panicked about who would bring the presents (like in the books we read) if Santa isn't real.

One night, I laid down next to her for our nightly routine where she wraps her arms around my head in a death squeeze and I mumble out the tune of a few songs - she leans over, looks me right in the eyes with one hand on my cheek, and whispers in my ear with all her toddler impediments, 'I know where the pwesents are. You and Papa hid them in the cwoset. . . It's ok dough. I won't wook.' She also insisted on no longer using any form of a proper greeting and would greet us with 'Mewwy Twistmas' instead of 'good morning' or 'good night.' I actually got another 'Merry Christmas, Mama' on this mid-January day as we put the tree away, but it seemed fitting. I like the way the girl thinks - squeeze one more in before the last bits of Christmas get packed away. For a few years there I wasn't sure what I was going to do. I had married a scrooge. Where was my fellow Christmas elf? After this Christmas, I think Ev will do a fine job. She has such an overwhelming Christmas spirit - she might bring out a little scrooge I didn't know I had in me.

So let's start with Christmas Eve.

I introduced her to her first proper hot cocoa in her own tiny Christmas mug and she was smitten. She's asked for more for the past three days and she practically hyperventilates when she starts to describe what she wants, '. . .the hot milk with the powdah (breathing heavily) and the BIG SMARSHMALLOW!' Mini marshmallows are just not welcome in the Jacobs household. It makes me very sad when the marshmallows melt. I prefer to drink my cocoa around my big fat marshmallow and let it get all melty on the outside - when the anticipation is too much I fish it out and eat it all in one bite in a very attractive manner, cocoa running down my chin.

Along with her Christmas pajamas and ornaments, a few new Christmas books were in the Christmas Eve box. Each year I add a few to her collection in hopes that we'll be able to do a book advent eventually. Books are her favorite, and hands down the thing that keeps her the most entertained each day. She sat in the same spot for a solid twenty minutes while I rolled around on the floor with my camera. I'm sure moments like this are an attractive sight to behold for my husband. I can hardly do anything quickly or without grunting these days. The pregnant struggle is getting real.

We set all the presents under the tree, put together a bed for her doll, and stuffed her stocking on Christmas Eve after she had gone to bed. She woke up and had no idea it was Christmas morning until she wandered out to the living room. I captured her reaction on camera and it was adorable - she walked right to the doll bed and said, 'You got a bed for my baby! Oh, that's so sweet.' She kept saying, 'Awe' and 'that's so sweet' over and over and running her hands along it - until she realized there were presents to be opened. I have to say - she was a very patient two year old. We knew this would be the first Christmas she would really show any excitement over and wanted to be sure it wasn't all about the presents, so we had planned on doing a few things before we could open gifts. Though my mom always let us open our stocking right away, so we've kept that tradition.

Since our first Christmas, when it was just Alex and I, we've eaten cinnamon rolls for breakfast on Christmas morning. Over the years, as we've changed our eating habits, this has become a bigger treat because it's really the only time we buy bake goods in a can. One of these days I'm going to learn how to make cinnamon rolls from scratch.

After all of the Christmas festivities were over, a good hour or more was spent running through our room screaming like lunatics, sword fighting with empty wrapping paper rolls, and making shields and helmets out of the boxes the presents came in. There was also a fair bit of me telling Alex 'be careful with her' and 'she needs a break,' because that's my job. We were all laughing hysterically during the taking of that last one. At one point, Evie was laughing so hard we couldn't pull the helmet off her head and that just made her laugh harder.

Ev has wanted a scooter since our Brooklyn days - practically every kid has a scooter to help them keep up on the walks around the neighborhood. You can see them all lined up at each playground. When I was trying to teach Ev how to blow a dandelion and make a wish, she whispered in her sweetest voice, 'a stooter - I want a stooter.' The little girl got her wish this Christmas and while it makes me a bit sad she won't be riding it down the busy sidewalks of Brooklyn like I had imagined, it was still a special thing for me to witness. These pictures probably aren't of much significance to anyone but me, but as I took picture after picture I realized this is it. This is our family. This is her childhood. These are her memories. Her Papa's hands clutched to the back of her jacket, his legs running beside her, our voices cheering for her off in distance as she finds her scooter legs and rockets across the parking lot. Our Christmas was made up of a lot of seemingly mundane moments, but it all added up to be something really beautiful. I will always cherish these memories, this Christmas, our last as a family of three.

P.S. Christmas 2012 + 2013.


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