Friday, January 22, 2010

Christmas Day

christmas morning

Buying for Christmas was easy this year and was brought to us courtesy of local thrift stores and Walmart. The theme: violence. The Star Wars enthusiasm generated by multiple viewings of the original three on our long Thanksgiving Trek had not abated and basically dominated our gifts this year.
Andrew got his highly-demanded booster seat. (Isn't his excitement palpable? I really captured the moment!) He needed it anyway and he has loved it every single time we get in the car. He loves it so much that I don't regret the little reading lights, though they are slightly annoying and slow Will's departure to sleep when driving home at night. They also sometimes trick me into thinking I am being pulled over.
I just love photos of kids gathered around a parent to assist them in opening presents.
Walmart guns. Still not forgotten.
Will, opening Andrew's gift to him (R2D2) with joy. Andrew was even more excited.
Spontaneous hug of thanks restaged so I could photograph it.The only thing Will asked for when seated upon Santa's lap (he was the most realisitic-looking Father Christmas I had ever seen, but when I asked him what Will had asked for he looked at me with utter surprise and said that he had no idea. But he knew his business; he had Will repositioned so as to minimize the appearance of his tube in the photo we paid a thousand dollars for.)
So, though they were the most expensive gifts and not easy to find in this warped age of obsession with Anakin and the Clone Wars, those movies had to get under our tree.
It is all they want to watch on our family movie nights.

I was nervous about Christmas morning this year because I 1) really wanted the kids to be happy and 2) didn't want to have to confront any issues with my own mothering if I were to see displays of ingratitude and spoiled-kid syndrome. I think about Harry Potter way too much to not have images of Dudley on his birthday prick my heart. But there was none of that, and the kids were genuinely joyful and excited. I wanted it to be magical and it was, for all of us.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Christmas Eve 2009

In reverse chronological order, because that is how they uploaded. This is how we set up the presents for the boys. Each one had his own little seat; Will's was a chair we already had, while Andrew's was his new booster seat. He needed one anyway, but I had countered his pleas by telling him he was not big enough yet. And I bought the slightly more expensive one that featured little reading lights. I made them those little capes, which is an incident worthy of its own blog post someday. The kids wear them just about every day, to my immense gratification.
This is how the room looked when we went to bed that night at 1 am or so, after wrapping presents and sewing capes (Brigham rethreading the machine I can barely operate) and watching Its A Wonderful Life. I realized that Brigham and I differed with regard to the importance of Santa. It did not even occur to me to try to provide evidence of the man or give him any credit for the gifts we had selected. But Brigham saw that there was magic in Santa for the boys and he worried about whether the boys would be troubled or alerted to suspicion by Santa using the same wrapping paper we did. He resolved it by telling the kids that we left out paper for Santa to use.
Will had fallen asleep in the car and the way home from our DC adventures, so he was unable to open a Christmas Eve present. I chose a transformer for Andrew to open. He was happy with it at first.
I probably should have just taken a photo to document the huge tantrum he threw when the toy proved impossible even for Brigham to transform without heavy reliance upon the directions.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Christmas Eve Festivities 2009

We held our 3rd annual Christmas in Washington on Dec 24th instead of the Saturday before Christmas because of the blizzard. First up: Botanical Gardens train and tree display.
My Dad and Andrew.
There was a tunnel with little windows looking into tiny rooms all decked out in miniature Christmas scenes. Will loved it. He also insisted on wearing pjs that day instead of clothing because he had received so many compliments while wearing it to a nighttime Christmas party.

The pond in front of the Gardens was totally frozen, so the first thing we did when we parked was go sliding around. The kids loved it.
We maintained the Christas Eve tradition of going out to eat ethnic food (tends to be less busy), but broke with the Indian place that gave a few of us food poisoning last year. Kazan was ok, but I think I will find another restaurant for next year. Will insisted on sitting on Nana's lap for the duration of the meal, so we failed to get a family photo.
After the Botanical Gardens, we headed to the National Gallery because I mistakenly thought there was a Christmas card display there. It was at the portrait museum. So we just saw the Virgin and Child paintings that are always there. The place was beautifully decorated, too. And this was actually a spontaneous hug.

Monday, January 04, 2010

Will goes to the hospital for a little scan

This is Will right after being tightly wrapped in what Fx Hspt styles a "papoose" to prevent body movement during his stomach scan (last November). He wasn't too happy about it. The tech was even more unhappy when I unwrapped him after Will agreed to remain still on his own. The tech told me it would never work and the whole 3 hours would be a waste of time. But he was wrong.
Despite being bitterly disappointed by an empty Scooby Doo dvd box and having to watch Sponge Bob instead, he took it like a man would take such a blow and went to sleep.
He looked so cute on that table, wearing my old shirt and his new Scooby sticker. He even got an extra one to give to Andrew.

This little episode demonstrates so much about Will right now. He stands up for himself (refusing to be constricted), but is reasonable and negotiable (agreeing to lie still on the table), will adjust to what is required (will fall asleep instead of tantruming, which is what I wanted to do after the many many fumblings on the part of the hospital (not knowing how to perform the procedure, delaying it by over an hour; having me bolus Will bc they didn't feel comfortable (??); promising him a movie they did not have (yes, I rank that right up there with having to call the dr to figure out details that should have been known by the time we arrived).
But it all worked out and I read Real Simple Magazine while he slept and got scanned. He lay still, even when awake, and the scan was perfect.