This Christmas season has been by far my favorite of all my Mommy Christmases. It's my 5th Christmas being a Mom...and it doesn't get much better than this. This year, Claire can tell the reason for Christmas...it's Jesus' birthday...Jesus came to die for our sins...and I LOVE hearing her talk about it. Because she understands the reason for the season, I've been ok with her being really into Santa stuff this year.
Growing up, my parents never really told us that Santa was real, but they didn't tell us he wasn't real either. Our stockings were always full of gifts from "Santa"...and as I got older I was able to distinguish between "Santa Mom", "Santa Na", & "Santa Gramma's" handwriting. It was still fun to pretend though. I remember when I was like 12 or 13....my older cousin and I would always sleep on my Gramma's L shaped sofa....after almost everyone went to bed, my Mom and Gramma had my cousin and me help stuff stockings....it was a feeling of not really being a kid anymore...kinda cool, but sad at the same time.
I had never really decided if I was going to let my kids believe in Santa. But without really thinking about it, I went for it! Bought an Elf on the Shelf and everything. Mistletoe was a huge part of Caudill Christmas 2012. Claire loves her, and shed a few tears when her "friend" left.
I loved the polite letter Claire sent to Santa. She came home from my Mom's telling me she had to send him a letter of her list. So we wrote it and asked Mistletoe to deliver it for us. Then a couple weeks later, she told me she needed to send another letter. Oh my...greedy little kid!
Another thing we did this year that I loved was wrap up 12 Christmas books. Claire got to open one each day and we read it together as a family. As the years go on, we'll add more books to our collection and hopefully one day have 24 books to open for the 24 days before Christmas. On Christmas morning we read the Christmas story from The Jesus Storybook Bible....love that version.
On Christmas Eve Eve, we went to our friends, Chad, Amie, and Tinsley's, for dinner and to look at Christmas lights. I love that we have friends who just get us, we don't have to impress, and we all get along so well with. The boys were roomies in college and have been friends since 2000, Amie and I became friends when we were working at church as single ladies, and now our daughters, although 2 years apart, are the sweetest and best of friends. We always love our time together...it's been amazing to see our friendships progress over the years...now making memories with our sweet girls. Christmas Eve Eve with the BeMent's is hopefully a new family tradition for us.
Each year, I've purchased a Christmas ornament for Claire...the first 2 of her Christmases, I bought pretty anthro ornaments...cute and girly...then when Claire was 2, we started getting ornaments of things she had been really into that year. So she has a Woody and Buzz ornament and a Rapunzel one. This year, she insisted on My Little Pony, but I couldn't find one anywhere. So I sent Daddy on a mission...this was his year to pick out an ornament for her. Daddy (the push-over) got her 2!!