holiday magic

You would think that with some vacation days under my belt I would have posted photos, updated, written something, anything. There was a pesky little thing called Tuesday that interfered a bit in that. It's hard to get into that zen vacation, "I've got nothing but time" place when you have to work the day after the official observance of the holiday. It's whiney and annoying I know, but wah. I felt like I didn't actually recover from all the magic until I woke up to race to work Tuesday morning, leaving my entire family still sleeping snug in their beds. So, I've really only been on "vacation" since yesterday morning and I've already responded to one voicemail and four emails. Today is Thursday. Where exactly did my long looked forward to "vacation" go? I spent the better part of yesterday devoted to those gooey and sinful cinnamon rolls. Connor and I left to our own devices went and bought "gredient" and whipped through the first few steps. When the roll oozed butter, sugar, cinnamon all over the kitchen table, I excused the rest of the family to finish the job on my own. If this is the only thing I accomplish beyond spending great quality time with my amazing litte family, I think this "vacation" will have been a success.

Isn't it always the way? Weeks spent shopping, searching for free shipping coupons, writing lists, updating ridiculous holiday spreadsheets, planning perfect dinners, wrapping packages, moving an elf at 5:30 in the morning. Poof. Gone. Peter our Elf back to the North Pole with the big guy to rest up for the year. Paper ripped open. Exclamations of gratitude complete.

2011 was the year of McCashew Magic. Connor magically SLEPT. (Can I get an Amen on that one?) Caroline magically learned to skate and decided she is up for session II of Learn to Hockey in January! Steve magically disappeared before our very eyes. (Edited to read that Steve magically disappeared before our eyes with his magical weight loss. His interpretation was that it read as if he had walked away from us and well, he may be right. So three cheers for his hard work and ongoing efforts as there really isn't a magical way to lose weight!) We went to the most magical place on Earth and lived to tell the tale. (in truth, I cannot wait to go back) & this season, this magical mysterious joyful holiday season, was perhaps the very best one we will have. It will be hard to top. I mean, the kids even got their annual Christmas colds a full week early, paving the way for a fever-free Christmas. What better more magical gift could there be?

Caroline fully comprehended Santa and Baby Jesus and was just so stinking excited that I just about popped a blood vessel thinking of Christmas morning. On the Eve of the holday, we read traditional holiday stories, devoured an amazing gingerbread house together, and sat by a fire while we tracked Santa on NORAD's iPhone app. (Can you imagine the stories these kids will tell their own children one day? We all gathered round the family iPad to track santa's ride. really?) A sad, tearful girl who did not understand time zones absolutely lost it Christmas Eve morning when I announced the big guy was delivering to Australia was racing around the room in near hysterical laughter when I showed her he was in the UK; the only thing between her and Santa was the great big Atlantic Ocean. We elfed the house, Steve voiced uneasiness that there were not a lot of things to open. We have gotten burned in the past, so many little things to open that the kids distracted by new shiny things they cannot move onto anything else. I knew we would be fine with fewer things to actually open, especially when the big things were so perfectly wonderful. Balls for the king of sports. A dollhouse for the girl who loves to organize. We haven't actually seen her "play" with the house yet, she is enjoying rearranging the rooms in an endless cycle. Our kids are incredibly lucky, but we are the lucky ones, watching them grown up, watching the magic.

Here is our magical Christmas morning 2011. The real magic may be that she did not lose it when she did not immediately see the dollhouse.


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