Monday, December 24, 2012

Pre-Christmas Part 2

We've talked a lot about the reason for Christmas --the baby Jesus.  Hannah knows the story and it has caused her to ask a lot of questions about babies, real parents, etc.
We have used an advent calendar and read the bible verse each day as we open each little door, lit the candles on the advent wreath each Sunday, and Hannah was in the Christmas pageant at school.  I am happy with how we have kept the religion in the season.

The commercial side is more perplexing to me.  I want her to get excited, have fun, and join in all the things her friends are enjoying but...I don't want her to get materialistic about it.
She had really given me no indication of what she wanted for presents.  She doesn't ask for much or beg me to get her things in the store and I like it that way.  I had friends tell me that they give thier kids the toy catalog and tell them to circle everything they want.  I just didn't want to do that--I don't want to teach her that she should ask for things.

She only ended up asking for two things--a kitten and legos.  Unfortunately mom nixed the kitten idea (She thinks she can get it for her seventh birthday--we'll see).  So that left Legos for Santa to give.  I was on my own to get things from me to her but it wasn't hard.  I got her some new clothes, new shoes, and some things for her barbies, and one game we can play together.
Santa has three Lego sets and a plethora of things for her stocking.
There is no one big ticket item this year and I am ok with that.

I attended a parent's workshop earlier this fall and the speaker sent out a Christmas newsletter.  He talked about free but meaningful gifts we can give our kids and they all helped build the relationship between parent and child.  I took one of those ideas and hope to do it every  year.  So..along with her presents, Hannah will get the following letter from Santa:

Dear Hannah,
I know the song says "You'd better watch out--You better not cry, you better not pout" but I really don't care if you have been naughty or good.  I care about what kind of person you are and I want you to know that I am proud of you.  This past year I have seen you:
--help your friends when they get hurt and I love how you care for others
--help your mom with dishes, laundry, and picking up your toys.  It shows you know what it means to be a responsible family member.
--work hard on your spelling words even when they are hard
--tell your Mom the truth when you have done something wrong.  Good for you for being honest.
--Dance around the living room to your favorite music.  Always keep that joy in your heart.
--Pray to God every night and give him thanks for the good things in your life.  I have even heard you say the Sign of the Cross in French!
--Always ask for treats and eat more sweets than you should but then you ask for some healthy fruit.
--work on your cartwheels until you got good and you keep practicing your handstands, soon you will be very good at them too!  Never give up.
--Get so excited when  you can visit your cousins.  I am glad you know how important family is.
--Give your Mom special hugs and kisses and tell her you Love her.  She really likes that and it makes her feel happy inside.
--tell people you are sorry when you have hurt their feelings or accidently hurt them.
--Use lots of imagination when you play--you can think of the best stories in the car.
--Get so excited when you can play with some one's pet, like Annika's hamster or Mary Lou's animals, or David's horses.  Always keep that love of animals.

I know why your Mom is so so proud of you. 
I am too!
Love, Santa

Pre Christmas Part 1

We have had such a fun Holiday season this year leading up to Christmas.
Many special events have helped us get ready and into the spirit of the season:

Hannah's school had their Christmas concert on 12/12/12.  It was Hannah's first stage debut and she did great.  Despite it being crowded and chaotic, I truly enjoyed watching her.

She had her second stage debut performing in the church pageant of the Christmas Story.  All the first graders were star bearers and each had to make thier own star to carry.  It was another fun night.  She also had her singing debut when she sang "Away in a manger" with two other friends.

We spent a lovely afternoon having tea with the Sugar Plum Fairy and then later went to see "The Nutcracker".  Hannah just loves that story and the ballet.

Our final event was the Lori Line Christmas Concert.  This was somewhat of a tradition for my parents and I.  We went together many years and they both loved it.  Now I am able to pass that down to Hannah.  Somehow on this night she looked like such a grown up girl in her Christmas finery.  She loved the show but slightly more than halfway through I got proof that she was still my little girl as she fell fast asleep and missed the last 45 minutes.  She even slept through a killer drum solo!

Things we did together at home included decorating the tree and making cookies.  We also made santa, a snowman, and a snowlady to adorn our front window.

Christmas is so much fun with a child!