And by Goose I mean me. Boy do I hate the weeks between Halloween and Christmas. I’ve read all the advice, how not to gain that average 5 pounds or so, but you’re reading the writing of a woman who gained the Freshman 15 back in college and kept it ON so really, advising me to be mindful of my holiday eating or to eat BEFORE I go to a holiday party… well, that only ends up with me eating two meals. The one before the party and the one AT the party. So that isn’t going to work at all. Last year’s 5 pounds on my left hip are proof of that.
But Christmas is coming and Snags is EXCITED! EXCITED! EXCITED! More so this year than any year past.
He’s already made his Christmas list for Santa and revised it twice.
It started off as a simple one page letter asking for three things. It has since morphed into a small catalog of photos cut from toy magazines and glued onto a stack of paper from the printer in the basement, stapled together, then attached to a cover sheet, lest Santa get confused as to whom the list came from.
Recently he decided to prioritize the list. Only he wrote “Top Choice” by each and every item on his list.
I finally had to sit down with him and explain that EVERYTHING can’t be his “Top Choice.” And as we flipped through the pages of his ever expanding list, I had to point out that Santa was not likely to bring him a rock tumbler because it was for children ages 10 and up. Ditto the chemistry set. “Darn it!” Snags yelled. And then he drew a big X over the items.
“Also,” I said, trying not to dampen his Christmas spirit but also wanting to keep my house fee of bugs, “No ant farm. Even when you turn eight and are old enough for an ant farm, see here where it says 8 and older? Even then, I am not having ants in my house. Not even if they live on a farm.”
“Why not?” Snags demanded to know.
“Because,” I said, “that’s why I pay the exterminator in the first place. Too keep ants out of here. Sorry kiddo.”
“Darn it!” He yelled again as he crossed the ant farm off his list.
My husband and I have been having a bit of a discussion lately too. He wants to limit what Snags gets for Christmas, set a budget. And I do too. We just can’t agree on what that budget should be. Because when your kid is six and wants a couple of $90 LEGO sets, well, there won’t be much under the tree if you say $200 is the limit, you know? And then also, my husband is of the opinion that the best presents should come from mom and dad and Santa should only bring maybe one or two gifts. I’m all against that. Because when I was a kid, SANTA BROUGHT EVERYTHING. Or nearly everything. My husband grew up differently than I and seems to think this puts the appreciation of Christmas on Santa, and not mom and dad. Jesus, some of you may notice, is left out of this part of the discussion. Yes, the holiday is about him, and he is lying in the manger we set up, but then, as Snags notes, Jesus was a baby at Christmas, and babies don’t bring you presents. But Santa, he does!
“Look at it this way,” I tried to explain to my husband. “We’ve probably only got another year or two of Santa left around here. Some older kid at school will spill the beans soon enough. I’d rather Snags be all excited about Santa while he can. He has the rest of his life to appreciate the fact that Santa was US. He can appreciate you and me and what we gave him from Santa when he’s grown. Right now, let’s let the mystery and excitement go on as long as possible. That’s what being a kid is all about, isn’t it?”
Well, that and being able to eat all the holiday junk you want without gaining an ounce.