Last night Avery said, “This was the best Christmas ever!” And it kind of was. We didn’t do much of anything. We opened presents in the morning. Then the kids got involved with Legos and forgot about anything breakfasty. Roger worked in the basement bedroom – he has most of the drywall in and the electric mostly done. The kids played with the neighbors’ grandkids part of the day, played the wii together and spent hours in the attic putting Legos together. I did nothing all day – made soup for lunch and a casserole for supper, read, scanned 2 boxes of old photos, tried to catch up on my blog-reading (I’m way behind. My bloggers are still writing about Thanksgiving.)
But when I got into bed last night, the memory from the day that stuck to me was the sound of laughter and comfortable conversation between my children.
When I was younger and I’d ask my mom what she wanted for Christmas, I didn’t like when she would say something like, “I want my children to all get along” or something intangible like that. I just wanted an idea for something I could wrap up and put under the tree.
This year we just did gifts for the children; Roger and I left ourselves out of the gift-giving. (Except… Santa wrapped up a flash drive and put it under the tree for me. My first gift from Santa! I guess he knew that Roger would never break the no-gifts rule…) I’m not sure why we didn’t do gifts for us; I guess we just ran out of time. We were too busy to take multiple trips to the store and buy presents secretly. At some point I realized that not dealing with the stress of shopping would be a nicer Christmas gift than finding packages under the tree with my name on them. The kids were disappointed to not have presents for us, but we convinced them that we were completely fine with it and they shouldn’t feel bad. (The convincing didn’t take long.)
I found it just a bit ironic that the one year they didn’t buy us gifts, they gave us exactly what we wanted: a peaceful home full of happy siblings who enjoy playing together. Maybe we didn’t do anything special; nobody got any stand-out awesome Christmas gifts that they’ll remember for the rest of their lives; but it was a peaceful, wonderful, together kind of day. Maybe I won’t completely disagree with Avery’s statement, “This was the best Christmas ever!” We got our intangible gift without even asking for it.
It was a good day.