Thursday, December 9, 2010
Christmas Eve and Christmas morning are chock full of traditions at The Other Boufs. For one, we don't just attack our presents and finish the whole present opening in 5 minutes flat. From as early as I can remember, I have savored the present opening and would open my own presents really slowly while I kept an eye on what my siblings were unwrapping. I didn't want to miss anything. I wanted the magic to last as long as possible. Since Katie is my mini-me in so many ways...she has fallen right into my present opening technique. We take turns and pass presents out. Katie also tends to like to play with every new toy right away...so some years, we've even resumed opening presents later in the day...or the next day. (insert gasp as I look up and reminisce about how long Katie's hair was just one year ago.)
Some Christmas mornings, during my childhood, Santa would hide the present I wanted more than anything - and I would get some hints that there might be something else for me once I had opened the rest of my presents. It may have only been once, but I remember that Christmas morning that I found my new Pound Puppy in the laundry room like it was yesterday: the wonder, the thrill and excitement, the satisfaction. To pass on a bit of this excitement to my kids, I have guided Santa into leaving the most exciting gift in the family room (our tree is in the living room). And at least through last year, Katie has never remembered this tradition and hasn't even wondered about whether there might be something more in another room.
It began in 2007, when Katie was 2 1/2. Although, I must admit, we were really left with no choice that year. Santa and mama had gone a little crazy with only one child to buy for and there really wasn't any room left in the living room - you know...with the Radio Flyer rocking horse and trampoline. Katie was ecstatic to find a new train table later in the morning as we assembled for breakfast.
In 2008, Santa surprised the kids with a racecar and jumparoo.
But as I prepare to begin the wrapping process for 2010, I am pondering - do I want to torture my kids this year? Do I want to torture myself? See, last year was the year that Katie became a brat.
Although she got the 3 specific items she had asked for and did show some excitement a few times,
she looked like this most of the morning.
She didn't verbalize what was bothering her and told us "nothing" when we asked, but I theorize that it was eating at her that she saw the push car and was jealous that there was only one "big" gift in the room...and it was her brother's. We knew big excitement would follow when she found her biggest surprise. But frankly, it pissed me off. Everything on her list had been received.
And then Timmy saw something in the family room...and Katie went to investigate...and there was the reaction I had anticipated.
So this year, I'm wondering...do I have Santa set up the kids' big exciting gifts in the family room? For the first time, it won't be an unanticipated gift. I expect Katie's biggest surprise will be the item highest on her list:
Timmy is getting the monorail set (if he's good).
Do you do anything similar at your house or do you have any unique present opening traditions? Is it worth potential silent pouting to buildup the excitement?