Hi, everybody! I hope your Christmas (or weekend, if you don't celebrate Christmas) was lovely. Ours was. I continued to be stressed about the state of the house--if you have lived in a house you are remodeling, you know what I mean--but I managed to keep it to myself because Justin WAS working as hard as he could, plus he had his workers come (paid for out of the company) and I really couldn't imagine how things would look if they DIDN'T push on through and get things done.
Things are shaping up nicely and although we're not done, Phase One is VERY close to being finished. (In case you're wondering, Phase One was the playroom itself which included the built-in cabinets and desk, the kitchen tile was removed, the wood floor in the playroom and kitchen which had to be installed, sanded, distressed, stained, and coated in polyurethane which meant we couldn't walk on it for hours, and the walls of the playroom, living room, kitchen, and hall were retextured with sheetrock mud and then primed and painted. Phase Two will be replacing the (even more horrible after all the remodeling) living room and hall carpet with the same kind of wood as the other rooms, and faux-finishing the walls.
I would just like to say that every bit of this was my husband's idea. Apparently I am one of those people like my late paternal grandmother who could leave a house exactly the same for thirty years, down to a decorative cake of soap in a bathroom. Why change? I like the decor just as much as when I got it. If not for Justin, I'd probably be living in late-90s decor for the rest of my life.
And it wouldn't be that bad, would it?
Apparently I am still traumatized over the chaos I've experienced in the last week. When I was GOING to tell you that despite my apprehension, we had a lovely Christmas.
Here's a tip: small children do not care when the tree goes up, because time doesn't mean anything to them. We could have waited until Christmas Eve for all my kids cared. They loved decorating the tree, and only took ornaments off it a few dozen times.
Miss Pink left a sweet letter to Santa. (I SO wish I had a scanner.) "Dear Santa, I like you. I have bin good. I want a little horse set." She left him some pastries called butterhorns which he ate with a glass of milk while watching the Ultimate Fighting Championship. (That Santa--you thought you knew him!) We did forget the reindeer, though. I hope they didn't get mad!
My kids are allowed to open one gift on Christmas Eve. Usually, it's pajamas but my mom had already given them PJ's that say, "What Santa Doesn't Bring, My Grandma Will" (totally true, by the way). So they opened their gifts from their cousins and I honestly think Mr. Blue would have been happy if we'd stopped there. Justin and I wrapped until around 11:30. Okay--Justin wrapped and I put the rest in gift bags. But I shopped for it all, so I don't feel guilty for giving him more work. We did watch It's a Wonderful Life while we worked--I love that movie.
The next morning, we woke up around 7:20 when Miss Pink woke up. We had to wake Mr. Blue up, and he was a little cranky until he saw the presents. We had a nice time and by the time we'd eaten breakfast, it was time to get ready to go to my parents' house for opening with them and my brother and his girlfriend. And a FABULOUS Christmas dinner.
Every year I think Christmas could not be better, and every year it seems even better than the year before. For one thing, the kids are a year older. This was the first year Mr. Blue could look forward to Christmas, and Miss Pink was all about decorating cookies, making ornaments, and reading a different Christmas story every night of December (that was new this year). I had such wonderful Christmases as a child, and it makes me so happy that my children are having the same kind of childhood. They didn't receive any really expensive gifts, but what they got was well thought out and tailored to their interests and age, so they think they are the luckiest kids in the world. And why wouldn't they? They have so many people around them who love them. I'm glad I am able to give them that gift.
Miss Pink told me before the day, "Mom, Christmas isn't just about getting. It's about giving too. That's my favorite part."