These preschool teachers are professionals. They have these kids ingrained and indoctrinated that Christmas is a birthday party for Jesus. ON. POINT.
Like my birthday, the celebration is not just ONE day, so here is how we celebrated over the course of the eve of, day of, and day after the party.
1. The eve of Jesus’s birthday party
Before we put OJ to bed on the eve of baby Jesus’s birthday, we laid out cookies (gingerbread cookies from our Advent activity) and bourbon (actually magic manhattan with a Luxardo cherry) because that is what Santa would get when I was growing up.
And this is apparently how he leaves our house…
2. To celebrate Jesus’s birthday party
T and I went on TWO DATES in two days. On Friday morning, we went to the food bank to sort food in the warehouse (while OJ stayed at home with his favorite babysitter).
For our second date in two days, on Saturday night, T and I went to 9:00pm mass together like adults while OJ slept. It was DE-VINE. Praise be God for B next door and her brilliant idea that we do not have to take our child with us to mass, and her very kind offer to come “babysit” while we went. It’s so not Christian and so not Christmas to not take your child to church. But it was brilliant to leave our screaming mimi at home.
After our two dates, T broke down the food bank experience like I broke down mass. Since T had been to the food bank before with (undisclosed employer), he said there were more people and more organization than when we went together. After mass, I had a litany of things that drive me crazy about this church and T’s only input was the man sitting two rows in front of us is an executive at (undisclosed employer) (celebrity geek sighting). I have to say that the worst part about living anywhere that is not Washington, DC is not having Holy Trinity. T tells me it’s like my filet mignon upbringing–I need to get over it. It doesn’t mean I don’t miss it. And didn’t whisper into his ear during church, “this would NEVER happen at Holy Trinity…” It reminded me of why I don’t like going to church here, but on the other hand, if we had brought OJ with us, I would not had a moment to pay any attention to the mass, which would also make me very unhappy. I did this when we were in DC too–I went to church AT HT without my child. Because that is my time. And on Christmas Eve, it was our time. Our date night time. Even if the show needed some work.
3. The gifts of Jesus’s birthday party
The Advent reflection from Georgetown for Christmas Eve said, “The coming of Jesus just beats out the arrival of Santa. Santa brings gifts. Jesus is the gift. The incarnation and the birth of Jesus connect human and divine histories. God is among us.” So you want to hear about our gifts?
Christmas came early to our house. A new kitchen sink for mom. Exciting stuff. But really–it is. Especially after looking at this for six days.
Soo fancy. My new one-basin sink can hold and soak a roasting pan, a long-handled pan, my XL silpat from end to end, and unfortunately, you can really pile in a ton of dirty dishes that need to be washed. But it’s amazing.
I can’t talk about T’s big ticket gift, a PS4, because it makes me want to spit bullets, on top of the fact that it was a CHRISTMAS GIFT that he setup the day he purchased it–IN NOVEMBER. This is HORSE SHIT.
Okay but once Christmas morning actually arrived, we had special breakfast of jalapeno cheddar biscuits, eggs, and bacon with orange juice (which OJ LOVES…).
After breakfast, we got to work on the gifts under the tree. After making him wait to open presents, it was a very unsatisfying and exhausting experience. He wanted to play with the toys he already opened and we had to coach/force him into opening more gifts. Eventually, after several meltdowns, T and I just opened his presents for him to get it done. True Christmas spirit. It’s not like we bought him a bunch of stuff–his big ticket item from us was a potty seat.
After barely surviving opening presents, we had birthday cake, at 10:30am.
4. The dinner party for Jesus’s birthday
Barely making it to nap time, we regrouped and rallied for our dinner guests–we so enjoyed the company of L&L (to which OJ adds, “and thunder!”), sitting outside because it was 75 degrees, our communal dinner effort, and what became an ecumenical celebration lighting the menorah, right next to the Christmas tree. Peace, y’all.
5. The day after Jesus’s birthday party
Of course I went to the Crate and Barrel Boxing Day sale, as we do not have a C&B here (living on the frontier, y’all) and that is just what you do on the day after Christmas–go to C&B. Luckily for her, Emily lives down the street from C&B so she met me up for a morning of shopping and strolling. C&B was a big bust, but it was really nice to see a friend from my past life.
6. To my future Jesus’s birthday party planning self
- DO repeat the Advent activities
- DO NOT order 125 cards because it is too many and maybe check out an alternative to tinyWHOLEPAYCHECKprints, like mpix (per the Guillory girls) or simplytoimpress (per cousin Megan)
- DO simplify the gifting by enacting this maxim and only purchase FOUR presents for each person:
- DO NOT let ANYONE, regardless of age or excuse, open ANY gifts before December 25 (except when a kitchen sink is involved, and suspect someone was playing tit-for-tat to excuse his November Christmas)
- MAYBE think about getting a real Christmas tree
- AND NEVER, EVER, EVER get distracted by Thanksgiving