The stockings weren't hung...
This year we had our Christmas tree up before Thanksgiving. We didn't decorate it or drag the rest of the holiday decorations out until the first of December, however. Last year was the first year we were in this house and the first year we had a fireplace, so I was (and am) pretty excited about decorating the mantel and hanging our stockings by the chimney with care. Except I won't be able to actually hang them until Christmas Eve. You see those reindeer and stars aways down the mantel, to the right? Those are our stocking hangers. They weigh approximately a jillion pounds, so I can just anticipate Mog grabbing the toe of a stocking and giving it a pull, only to knock himself out with a reindeer. Not a good scenario.
For now the reindeer and star will sit patiently with their little hooks waiting for the moment when a small boy goes to sleep on the eve of Christmas, waiting to hold four oversized socks stuffed to the brim with tiny treasures. Four. Yes, four. Eli, Rachel, Eliot, Mumford. (Mumford's stocking may be filled with coal this year, but he still gets one.)
The advent house I bought last year has been a BIG hit. The first thing Eliot wants to do each morning is open the window and see what's inside. We talk about what number today is and what do you think could be behind number eight? Number nine? What about fourteen? He is definitely most intrigued with the door. What could possibly be behind that door? He asks every morning if he can open the door. Nope, not today. Not today. Not today. The anticipation has been so much fun.
Behind each of the little windows is a different chocolate--some Hershey's kisses, Butterfinger bells, and little chocolate wrapped Santa Clauses.
I'm already thinking that for next year, rather than chocolate behind every window, I'll have slips of paper with activities, like "watch Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer," or "drive around and look at Christmas lights," decorate Christmas cookies," etc. That's what I had originally planned for this year, but I wasn't prepared and just couldn't summon the energy. We have been trying to do something festive everyday, or at least just take some time in the evening to sit in the dark and look at the lights on our tree. It's a nice way to calm down and relax at the end of each day.
Now I suppose I need to find something really cool to put behind that door (!) The door and the upper window, 24 and 25, they're going to have to be something special, now that he's all into the whole concept. If he FINALLY gets to open that door, and all he finds is another chocolate bell, I predict some serious holiday disappointment. Suggestions???