Ho ho ho! Hope you all had a wonderful X'mas with your friends/ families. Today, at our household, we've witnessed a significant milestone- Eva is officially converted as a santa believer.
Recall not long ago (well, exactly 2 posts ago if you care to flip back), X'mas was just a fun day to rip into gift-wrapped toys. There was no expectations whatsoever. But since we loaded up on X'mas-related books @ Borders' 50% off post-holiday sale last year (yeah, back when Borders still existed, sad...), we have been VERY prepared for this guy called Santa this year.
To prepare for the big day, we excitedly wrote Santa a letter (she tried really hard to sign her name correctly)...
Look at her reaction this morning when she discovered the plate of crumbs and empty cup and Santa's "response" to her letter... (everything was put behind the fireplace screen overnight, so we'll know that if the food was consumed, it's DEFINITELY Santa, and not Bryson).
(Pardon the technological glitch, I'm not sure what happened with youtube, but you'll have to enjoy a video of Bryson gnawing on his X'mas present before Eva's santa-discovery video. Yes, it's a bully stick, yuck, but he sure enjoys it)
OK, hope you were able to watch Eva's video. If her face wasn't precious enough, check out @1:10 again, where she said with that little voice while covering her mouth "He came." (actually she said "he comes", I guess we haven't quite mastered tense of irregular verbs yet).
And we tried to stay basic in the presents department, sticking to books and board games and wooden toys. I think she's had enough stimulation/ couch-potato time given how much high-tech media she comes across every day, and also I find myself quite nostalgic about these toys, maybe I'm just getting her what I thought I would have loved as a kid...
And she's going through a total Nutcracker phase, in fact, the one thing she asked from Santa this year is a "big nutcracker doll". I had to tell her that it's too big to fit down the chimney, and persuaded her that a nutcracker paper doll activity book is even better... (so far she's buying it, whew)
And I hope we've hammered in Eva's head how lucky she is, and the holiday is as much about giving than it is about receiving, yada yada yada... In fact, I've sat down with her to watch a number of documentaries about kids who don't have enough to eat or a roof over their heads, as a preparation before our annual Thanksgiving holiday meal delivery. So much so that one morning, upon climbing into our bed in the morning, she stared at the ceiling and said "I'm very lucky... we have a little bit of money, so we can buy food, and hot water". Both Jacques and I rubbed our eyes and looked at her like "hmm...?"
Since even my 3 year-old understands how lucky she is to have food and hot water, I guess I also have to take stock of how fortunate I am this holiday... it may sound corny, but what makes every holiday special is inevitably the friends (who for us really is family) who we get to spend time with...
And extra-super-duper lucky for us this year, not only old neighbors whom are still near and dear to us, but new neighbors we're just getting to know, who're turning out to be some truly wonderful and special people... like our neighbor's teenage daughter below, whom Eva absolutely adores (and begs to play Princess game with every time they're together).
While I'm happy that Eva is old enough to appreciate holiday spirit and is so full of wonder and fascination about Santa, part of me also can't believe that I have spent so much energy to lead her to believe something that's fabricated, which makes her think that all the toys we've bought with our hard-earned money come from this fictional guy from the north pole whom she's never really met, and this whole lie is something that we'll have to perpetuate for years to come just so we won't break her tender little heart...
Oh well, guess that's all too late now. You can see in her eyes that Santa is now as real as the toys he's left with her. But perhaps that will give us more ammunition for the "if you want to stay on Santa's good kid list, you gotta be good" argument. Ho ho ho!
And here are other pictures of what we've been up to this holiday season, coz god knows when I'll have time to update the blog again (hopefully not another year...):
Yummm, holiday cookies baking! Especially "useful" when it's a rainy day and you need some activities to keep your 3 year-old occupied. They're quite good at sprinkling at this age ("some for cookies, some for me...").
My latest fad is planting succulents. Aren't they so cute? Hope to grow a green thumb now that we live in a space surrounded by greens. Planted these little ones in pots that Eva helped decorate for her teachers at school.
Ooh... a real fireplace! First time in my life, stuff of my dreams... and apparently Eva's now too, since Santa finally has a way to get into our place.
Hope everyone's enjoying their holiday, and wish you all a very happy new year too!