Right now, I’m feeling grateful that we’re doing our most simple holiday celebrations ever – and trying hard to stick to it. (It’s hard not to get swept away by the fervor!) Inspired partly by Ginny last year, we’re just doing stocking stuffers for the children. They’ll get a few gifts from grandparents, and that is plenty. We’ll have an extended family feast – and celebrate the little one’s 2nd birthday! – on Christmas Day, and that will be plenty.
Sure, we’ve been reading holiday books and at bedtime I’ve been singing Christmas songs – the songs are my favorite part. But there’s no worrying about how many presents, no frenzied making of handmades. I’ve finally started working on the baby doll again (after, ahem, two years) and it will be done soon, but probably not by Christmas morning. In the past, I would’ve felt guilty about that, but this year I’m glad. I do think Christmas/Solstice time is special, but I don’t want it to be the most special time of the whole year. What about the first days of spring, and summer solstice, and harvest time? I love them all.
I finished Ella’s thick new mittens before the big snows came . . . and she doesn’t like them. Ah well. I just keep putting them on her, and hoping they’ll grow on her. Both Ella and Gabriel have been excited by me hand sewing the baby doll, and have been doing some sewing (or “sewing” in G’s case) of their own. Ella and I plan to sew some pockets onto the little one’s pants for his birthday present – he’s obsessed with pockets, and somehow most of his pants don’t have them.
Ella doesn’t seem to have noticed that Halloween is over – she is still completely obsessed with creating costumes, which change daily. Mostly my answer to helping her make these costumes is “no” or “use what you have”, but one day she wanted to make a Native American dress, and I realized that I could sew a very simple one – just a rectangle with elastic at the top. She painted a really wonderful pattern on it with fabric paints . . . and hasn’t worn it, saying she’s waiting for the poncho. She plans to dress up as a witch for Christmas – how very apropos and very six.
I’m glad for a couple of weeks of break from homeschool – it felt a little formulaic toward the end, partly because we were so busy at work, and I’m hoping to enter the new year with fresh inspiration. It’s time I finally learned some pentatonic songs on the recorder to show her and bring into our circle time.
And soon Gabriel will be two. Two! He is so big, and so very little. So many words, including, “Mine” “Self” and “Babriel” for Gabriel. He is sweet, and confident, and quite a ham who loves to make us laugh. He calls cats “Meow-me” and muffins “Muff-me”. He has stolen all of our hearts, even when he’s acting like a deranged toddler. He is so insulted when I brush his teeth that he holds his breath until he turns blue. He loves trucks, and cats, and most of all, his big sister. He will often stand right next to her and copy her posture and gestures exactly, so that he is her little mirror. Luckily for all of us, she mostly mirrors for him a lot of love.
Here’s hoping you have a beautiful and peaceful holiday, and blessings on your new year.