Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, my darling!
Another Christmas has come and gone and a New Year is now upon us. I find that Christmastime always makes me reflect. I remember being so anxious for your first Christmas. I wanted it to be perfect with all the right gifts. I wanted to make Christmas just as magical as it was when I was a little girl. This year, Christmas 2015, was the first Christmas that you really understood. Santa, his reindeer, the lights — you were so excited about it all, and so was I! You spent the month leading up to Christmas telling Henry all about Santa and the twinkle lights and the perfect little barbecue that was on her list. When we wrote our letter to Santa, you made sure to include Henry’s Christmas wish: a little barbecue and an orange kitchen. I have a sneaking suspicion that he did not tell you that this is what he wanted, but you were pretty adamant. We wrote our letters, made a Santa visit (which went smashingly well!), and decorated our house. The only thing that was missing, the one thing that always makes Christmas for me, was the snow. We has a very green Christmas this year. Christmas Eve day was spent walking around Westport finishing up our last minute shopping while wearing t-shirts and sandals in the 17 degree weather. It won’t always be like this, I promise.
Christmas was such a magical day. It continues to be my most favourite day of the year because I get to spend it with all the people that I love so much. As you grow, you will learn that traditions are very important to me. Every Christmas Eve, we spend the evening at Grandma and Grandpa Blair’s. We fill our tummies full of delicious turkey and stuffing and potatoes. Everyone is there… A big long table fit for twenty-some people! We all sit at one long table, wearing Santa hats and telling jokes. As I look down the table, it makes me thankful to have so many people in our lives. We really are lucky, Olive. We are surround by the love of so many wonderful people. You always sit with Grandma at the head of the table. She loves you so much. As Daddy and I enjoy our dinner at the other end, I can hear you giggling and telling stories. You face lights up with the biggest smile every time you see Grandma. Your bond, your friendship, your love – it is so precious and refreshing. Grandma always puts on such an amazing meal.
By 7:30pm we head over to Elgin to go to Christmas mass with G and Popa. If any tradition has to stay, this is the one. Christmas mass is the most important one to me. I have so many memories from this evening. Growing up, it was the one thing we “had” to do before Santa could come, however that “had” has changed to “like” over the years. As we sit in the pew, the church only lit by candlelight, listening to the choir singing silent night instills warmth in my heart that I wish everyone could feel. I think you made this night magical for many. As the choir began singing, you sang “Twinkle Twinkle” as loud as you could. You paced back and forth from one side of the pew to another climbing over all our knees. You concluded your Christmas Eve show by running up the centre aisle (luckily not jumping up onto the alter), giggling as loud as you could. Popa finally was able to grab you! As he swung you up in the air and into the pew, the whole church heard you yell “WEEEEEEEE!”. I’m sure many people were not-so-impressed, but I keep reminded myself that at least you were there. At least you were celebrating Christmas at mass. It is always nice to hear the voices of young children in church.
As mass ended, we gave our Christmas Eve hugs to G and Popa and went home to leave out cookies for Santa and carrots for his reindeer. Christmas morning we woke at 7:30. I could barely wait to see if Santa had come. You rushed down stairs as fast as your bum would take her. As you walked into the living room, you were speechless. All you could do was point. There, right in front of you, was that beautiful barbecue you had been talking about for so long. You couldn’t believe your eyes! We spent the rest of the morning unwrapping presents and playing with our new toys. You did quite well! – A barbecue, a train, a toaster, toy cookies, Mr. Potato Head!! When G and Popa arrived around 9:00, you had a blast showing off all your new things.
By 10:00 we were packed up and heading to Grandma and Grandpa Blair’s house. The house was full of Christmas! We had our traditional Eggs Benedict while we opened mountains of presents! You were spoiled yet again! A new skating vest (just like grandma!), a wooden cake for your kitchen, lots of books and stickers, and a beautiful Minnie Mouse necklace! We spent the rest of the morning telling stories and sharing Christmas cheer around the Christmas tree. It is so nice to sit and enjoy everyone’s company!
At 12:30 we packed up again and headed to G and Popa’s for the rest of the day. Again, we walked into a sea of presents. We all sat in a circle around the Christmas tree on the porch that Daddy built. Slowly the wrapping paper pile grew and grew. You helped unwrap most of Henry’s presents all day long; a double duty she did not mind! You were quite surprised to open your very own iPad (A Leapfrog that you call an iPad) and the Leapfrog version of a Fit Bit! On top of that, you received a whole new wardrobe and a giftcard for Mommy and Olive to get our nails done!
Later in the evening we sat down for dinner with the Raison family. It was a feast fit for a king! It was such a nice way to finish up thr perfect day – surrounded by the love of family. It is hard to believe that your third Christmas has come and gone already. It was the most magical of all. Your eyes told the whole story. They were so full of magic right to the very end!
Other notable things from this month:
Christmas is my favourite time of year because I get to spend it with my beautiful family. This magical time of year always fills my heart with so much joy. As I look towards the future, I only have one Christmas wish for you. No matter where you are, or what you are doing when you grow older, I hope that you will always find your way home to me on Christmas morning. I already can’t imagine spending a Christmas without you. Promise me this.
Saying farewell to this amazing year feels so bittersweet. Henru’s arrival brought so much joy back to my life. As I hold you both in my arms, my little miracles, I am ever so thankful for all the life lessons I have learned in 2015. You have reminded me to slow down, to be thankful for whom I am surrounded by and to enjoy each moment that comes. 2015 was an incredible, life-changing journey. Throughout the year I felt so many emotions from sadness and grief to overwhelming happiness and pure bliss. It was my personal growth year. I am sad to see it go, but I am welcoming 2016 with a new found appreciation for a healthy life full of risks and adventures.
I love you to the moon and back, Olive! I wish you an adventurous journey in 2016!