There's something a little surreal about this Christmas. I suppose it's because it's so different from any other Christmas: we have a child now. And it really colors everything in a different light.
This year's preparation for the holidays has been a bit more stressful than previous years. There was one weekend less to prepare, since Thanksgiving was so late. We had a death in the family, Joe's grandmother, Jonas's great-grandmother. All of us have been sick this month. I've had a hard time exercising restraint on Christmas purchases this year, but did so, because it would have been imprudent to do otherwise. And, I learned that with a child I need to start thinking about Christmas earlier in the year, not the day after Thanksgiving.
That said, this year is also incredibly joyous. Last night we went to Jonas's daycare Christmas party. Jonas went between awestruck and ecstatic, shaking his bells, as the other children sang Christmas carols. The best moment was when we were presented with (absolutely delicious!) cookies that the woman who runs the daycare had made for each of the families. On the wrapping was a precious ornament with Jonas' photo. I don't know why, but when I saw it, my heart melted and I nearly wept. Wept, for what? I don't really know. Joy, I think. All the other children had their own ornaments, too. But they had taken the time to make one for us, since Jonas couldn't make his own. Such a simple thing, and yet it gave me such happiness. I had to bring it upstairs and put it on my nightstand last night. I looked over at it often. It made me smile and my heart flutter.
Christmas Eve was a really nice day. We had some last minute running around to do. For example, we had to go out and get the "kid backpack" (photo above) for our family trek tomorrow. We received some money as a gift for Christmas, so we went out and treated ourselves to a gift the whole family could enjoy. Joe put Jonas in the pack tonight and Jonas lit up like our Christmas tree. He kept smacking Joe on the head, letting him know that he should get a move on.
Joe and Jonas also got to spend some one-on-one time this morning while I got my hair done. One of the things that I love now about this stage of parenthood is the stories we exchange about what Jonas got into while the other was away from the house. When I returned, Joe told me that Jonas and Ginger played together much of the time I was away. Joe took several photos, but I can only post a few.
Recently, Jonas has begun to hug people, and Ginger. He also gives a lot of "pats" and an occasional kiss, although he often still goes in for the kiss with his mouth open. I think that he thinks a kiss is just when you put your face next to someone else's. This is definitely Ginger's comprehension of what a kiss is, although hers has a certain nudge quality to it. Maybe Ginger schooled Jonas on how to give kisses. Anyway, here are a few photos from this morning. I thought they were adorable, especially the last one.
Jonas giving Ginger a kiss on the head.
"Hey look, Dad, I've got her ear!"
Merry Christmas to all (or Happy Chanukah, or Kwanzaa, or whatever your celebration), and to all a good night.