Wednesday, December 24, 2014

Christmas Eve

On Christmas Eve we draw names out of a hat: Mary, Joseph, Wise Man, Angel, Donkey, Shepherd, Camel, etc... and then we give ourselves twelve minutes to get ready. My mother is a saint to let us raid her closet. It's terribly fun. But this year when Erik realized we'd be dressing up - his festive tone changed and he sidled up next to me. "Mom," he whispered, "I reeeally don't want to do it!" I tried to reassure him. It didn't work. I tried telling him that no one would even be watching. That didn't work either. And then my sister (who is a pirate whisperer) tried to tell him it'd be okay. But nothing worked until my dad offered him the narrator position... he loved the idea.

So Erik was The Narrator. Squísh was Mary. ("Like Meri the Fairy, Mom!") My sister was Joseph, her husband was a camel. My parents were shepherds. Steve and I were Wise Men. My brother was a sheep. Robs was the Angel. And Em was baby Jesus. 

Erik read from the scriptures on my dad's phone. But when we posed for the picture, we needed an actual book. My mom grabbed the first book of scripture she could find... which happened to be another testament of Jesus Christ. As opposed to the one that tells about his birth. I got a good laugh. I love this family.

After putting the pirates to bed, we set up Christmas. (Which is, hands down, one of the greatest parts of being a parent.) Steve and I have decided not to put much emphasis on Santa Clause. I've told our pirates how the story of Santa fits into Christmas, but the younger ones like to believe he's real. This year Erik made it clear he was hoping for a BMX bike - black with pegs. (They're easy peasy to find.) But a couple weeks before Christmas, during (one of our many) conversations about bikes, I asked Robs what kind of bike she would have if she could have any bike in the world. She replied right away: purple with big tires, gears that shift, and pedals that go backwards. I entertained the thought, but in my shopping for a BMX bike, I hadn't seen anything in our price range that fit Robs' request. The next day Steve and I went to REI. We looked at all their tantalizing merchandise and then right before leaving, I asked a sales guy if he had any purple twenty-four inch bikes. I could hardly believe it when he said he did, but it was in the back room. (Santa's workshop. Obviously.) I don't think I'll ever forget watching that bike wheeled towards us. There were angels singing! It fit everything on Robs' list of hopes and dreams, and it was perfectly purple. I looked at the price tag, and it was a wee bit out of our budget, so I asked if he, by any chance, had any other purple bikes that were in the price range. He told me that it had just been on sale the day before, and that he'd talk to a manager about giving us the sale price! (Manager Santa. Obviously.)

Long story short... we got the bike! It fit Robs' every hope and dream. And it was perfectly in our price range. And she had no idea it was coming. So on Christmas Eve, I got to line up two bikes with two great big red bows... and for a split second I knew Santa was real.


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