Monday we went with our homeschool group to the Nutcracker. My husband went along. That's right. To the ballet. (I wouldn't be surprised if he takes me to a monster truck rally or something just to get back his manhood.) It was an OK rendering of the ballet. This was my third time seeing the Nutcracker, which is really two times too many, but I feel everyone should experience it at least once in their life, and this was my children's once, unless they try a second round on their own.
Tuesday began our family's 24 Days of Christmas. I decided this year to take the whole month of December off of school. I can do that because I'm the principal, director, teacher, and mom. We'll make up our days in the summer when the children are bored anyway. I want this month to be special rather than chaotic.
Rather than buying each of the children the traditional advent calendar which hides a piece of chocolate behind each numbered door, I bought 24 mini-stockings and numbered each of them. Each morning, the children will check the stocking and discover an activity we will do as a family that day and perhaps a little sweet goody as well. Today I had planned to watch Charlie Brown's Christmas; however, Mr. O decided to take the spotlight as he seems to enjoy doing. So no Charlie Brown. We had storytime with hot chocolate instead. Tuesdays are our busy days; the other 23 days will be more exciting, or at least those that don't fall on a Tuesday.
Today at co-op two of the co-op members had prepared an absolutely amazing project for the kids called "Art from the Heart." They set up various stations, and at each one, each child (there were about 50 kids!) prepared a gift. From pancake mix to scented bath salts in a special jar, there was a huge variety of gifts. And quality gifts, not just Christmas trees glued on foam. We have some amazingly creative ladies in our homeschool co-op! Anyway, the kids had a great time this afternoon, and they were so cute when they got home as they finished labeling their gifts and then proudly set them under the tree. It's so neat to see them preparing gifts for each other and for their grandparents.
And speaking of gifts, my biggest little girl got a special gift today--her first gift from a boy. Oh, my goodness. My baby. She's going to be TEN in a couple weeks. How did she grow up so fast? Anyway, this cutie-pie boy in co-op has a little crush on her and, knowing her birthday is coming up, he spent his own money and bought her a Webkinz reindeer! Is that not the sweetest thing? I knew from his mother that the gift was in play and that my daughter receiving it only depended upon this young man's courage to give it to her.
So after co-op, I saw her there holding the reindeer and I knew he had indeed summoned the courage to present the gift. When we got in the car, I said, "You know, I think A. has a crush on you." I don't believe I've ever seen her blush so deeply. She scolded me and then began babbling on about nothing all the way home. Seriously. Fast-talking, silly, embarrassed nonsense. Later I asked her about the exchange--what he had said when he gave it to her, what she said, was anyone else standing around? Did she remember to say thank you?
And how did my little girl get to be so grown up?