Christmas finally arrived…bright AND early. The kids were up at the crack of 6am, excited and ready to tackle the present-opening. Of course, like all parents, we HOPE they’ll sleep later, but come on. We all remember that feeling. So we had coffee downstairs ready to brew.

The kids rushed down and right away saw their presents from Santa. Amelia got the doll ice cream truck (not official American Girl Doll merch, but made for that kind of doll), and Henry got a cool PAW Patrol vehicle that, like all cool boy’s action vehicles I can remember as a kid, actually contains several other vehicles. It shoots out motorcycles and also launches a helicopter.

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again…I don’t know where the PAW Patrol gets its funding, but their budget must pretty extravagent.

Anyway, they were both thrilled and it was a beautiful Christmas morning moment.

 

(Notice the darkness out the window in the back of the photo. That gives you an indication of how early it was.)

From there, it was a run of opening presents, and all of us got some fantastic gifts. The kids loved their various toys.

 

Erin got several books and a gift certificate for facials at her favorite spa. Also, since she is ever the Outlander fan, I couldn’t help but get her these sweet socks.

 

I also got some fan-appropriate gifts in the form of these awesome Devo face masks.

 

We had also included some sensory toys for Henry on his Christmas list, and several relatives sent some cool things that he loves and will really help him. One is a cloth tunnel that his occupatiaonal therapist uses with him and he loves. He also got this cool tile that looks like a lava lamp when he steps on it.

   

As a family, we got a Nintendo Switch, which is super cool and also was quite a challenge for a non-gaming troglodyte like myself to set up. My last interaction with a gaming system was basically a box that you plug in, connect to the TV. tune the TV to channel 3 and then play Burgertime or Defender or what have you. Not so much here. Lots of logins and downloads and on and on and on. Eventually, we did get things running and it was off to the races! Oh yes, Mario Kart. It was really fun family play, and it’s already clear that I am far outclassed by my wife in this game.

 

We spent most of the afternoon setting things up and hanging out, then settled into a nice low-key evening. I got to try out this cool new beer tap Erin got for me. You just put a bottle or can of beer in it, and it pours out like a draught. I was duly impressed by how well it worked.

 

Like so many families out there, this was the first Christmas in a while that was just us. While of course we’d prefer to be able to see those we love and miss our family and friends very much, we definitely made the most of our special time together and made lots of great new memories.

It’s been a hell of a year, and it’s easy to focus on all we’ve lost, but on a day like this, I tried really hard to focus instead on how fortunate we are and how much we have. For anyone reading this, I hope you were able to find some joy and hope.

I ended yesterday’s post with a song from the musical, Scrooge, and I will do the same today. Sometimes when I feel down or negative, I think of this song. In it, the Ghost of Christmas Present teaches Scrooge that our attitudes and outlook make our situation. He does it with the mantra, “I like life.”

I like life. Life likes me. I make life a perpetual spree. Here’s to all of us making perpetual sprees, during the holidays and on all days.