Friday, December 24, 2010

Five Things That Fill Me With Child-Like Joy at Christmas

1. Spending a day with my daddy and my sister (and now my daughter), in which we cook something delicious. It doesn't matter what as long as it can be something that reminds my dad about his childhood. This year he roasted lamb & vegetables, made potatoes and gravy and stuffing. My sister made her traditional non-traditional smorgasbord of deliciousness, which included brie cheese, fresh seafood, veggies and sauces, toasted breads, smoked salmon, crackers and olives. Ellie and I had already produced an abundance of cookies and cupcakes. We spiked egg-nog and drank some delicious local ale, too. Cooking, snacking, just spending all day at home with those I love the most - that fills me with joy.

2. The Nutcracker Ballet. I used to watch a video of this ballet obsessively when I was my daughter's age. If you've ever seen a three-year-old watch a movie, you know what I mean - as soon as the video is over, you rewind and start it again. Even just hearing a few bars of the amazing Tchaicovsky score makes me stop dead in my tracks and smile. I effing love it!

3. Christmas movies. It's a Wonderful Life, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, Holiday Inn and White Christmas, Rudolph, Santa Claus is Coming to Town, The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus, the Mickey Mouse version (and any other version) of Charles Dickens' A Christmas Carol, A Christmas Story, Miracle on 34th St (either version), Charlie Brown Christmas... almost any of them. They make me feel like a little kid.

4. The David Bowie/ Bing Crosby video. You know what I'm talking about!

5. Watching my daughter open presents. That's a new one, I guess, but hot damn, it fills me with joy. Watching her face light up as she realizes what she's holding in her hands. Watching her smile and be amazed. In fact, let's add "watching my daughter talk about santa" to this one. She believe so heartily and tells amazing stories. I cannot wait to see her face when she walks downstairs to a full stocking and new amazing toys in the morning. She's worth getting up before the sun to watch her open presents. I can live vicariously through her, now that I'm a single mama who doesn't get much in the way of gifts. But I don't usually mind so much.

Just being with my baby, taking some time off of work, indulging in delicacies of the season, getting sappy over Bing Crosby and claymation movies. Christmas is amazing. I tear up just thinking about it sometimes.

Merry Christmas everyone. (And by Christmas, I definitely mean Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Solstice, Festivus, or any other family/personal/religious/secular traditions you have!)