Getting Ready for Christmas 

We have been busy and excited getting ready for Christmas!  As a crowd control tactic while Brian was traveling for a month for work, I had the kids start to decorate our Christmas tree in mid November.  This kept them entertained for quite awhile as they arranged and rearranged ornaments on the tree.

Danny was quite obsessed with candy canes this year.  He wanted to eat them and decorate with them.  Even though we have several realistic candy cane ornaments, Danny took a bite out of this clearly non-edible Chicago Bears candy cane ornament.

We waited for Daddy to come home to help us with putting the star on top of our tree.  Danny and Patrick each got a turn  helping with the star.

The boys were excited for Saint Nick to visit and leave presents in our shoes.  This year, Saint Nick was two days late in visiting our house, mostly because everyone forgot about it until others posted about it on Facebook reminding us of his visit.  Thankfully the boys didn’t know the difference.  At first Patrick tried to put out five pairs of his own shoes instead of a pair for each person.  Saint Nick gave the boys each a pair of Christmas pajamas and a toy – Danny and Patrick got yo-yos, and  Kevin got a hippo that makes a funny noise when you squeeze its belly.

Saint Nick, who must have known I just returned from Peru, brought me earrings and a bracelet I had seen at a Peruvian market.   Brian got mustache-shaped clips to close bags of chips.  Danny and Patrick immediately changed into their holiday pajamas, both loving the red nose that came with Patrick’s Rudolf jammies.

Kevin loved his hippo and Danny loved to imitate it.

Last weekend, the Embassy hosted a breakfast with Santa.  The boys were surprised that Santa spoke English.  Patrick later asked our nanny Mercedes if she had spoken with Santa yet about what she would like for Christmas. When she said she had not, he told her she should really do so soon, so that she could get presents from Santa.  Then he told her, you might not get any presents anyway, if Santa speaks English and you don’t.  Kevin seemed indifferent to Santa, not afraid of him but not loving him either.

After talking to Santa and eating their fill of pancakes, the boys happily went down the slip n slide and played at the Embassy pool.


When we got home, Brian gave the boys summer haircuts, letting them temporarily sport mohawks.  Danny and Patrick jumped in the pool in their underwear to get all the little hairs off their necks and shoulders.

We separately took the boys to the mall to do some Christmas shopping. 

Kevin was excited to help with wrapping the gifts.

Danny and Patrick each have two Advent calendars (one in their hands and one behind them on their dressers) which they are excited to open each morning.  It’s a great motivator to help get them out of bed and moving in the morning!

This Christmas season the boys and I have watched holiday movies including “Polar Express” and “The Muppets Christmas Carol.”  Remembering last Christmas and watching those movies with our families in a Chicago winter, the boys have asked us about our aunts, uncles and cousins, winter, snow, Ebenezer Scrooge, and the train to the North Pole.

More than anything else, Danny and Patrick are especially curious and inquisitive when it comes to Santa.  Here are just a few of the questions they’ve asked about Santa as well as their speculations about the answers.

  • Patrick: Does Santa ever die?  How come Uncle Tim died and Santa cannot die?  What if he fell down a waterfall?  No, he is the most careful person ever so he wouldn’t fall down a waterfall.
  • Patrick: How can Santa deliver so many gifts all night and not get tired?  Maybe he is magic and doesn’t need to sleep as much as normal people.  The elves sleep at nighttime when Santa goes to work.  In the middle of the night, the elves wake up.  And then they work hard during the day.  
  • Danny: Every reindeer needs his own carrot.  They have a long night so we need to feed them all.  We’ll need to buy a lot of carrots to leave out for them when Santa comes.
  • Danny: Can I leave present for Santa?  I think he would like a Batman cave.  Patrick: I think he would like if we write him a note.
  • Danny: Why is his beard white?
  • Danny: If you hear Santa and you’re not in bed, you need to run to your bed right away.  
  • Patrick: On Christmas morning Daddy or Mommy need to go down stairs and make sure Santa isn’t down there still eating cookies. 
  • Patrick: Did Santa make God?  Or did God make Santa?  They both live together in heaven?  How do they both always know what we’re doing? Are they friends with each other?

They sure are curious and so very excited for Christmas morning tomorrow!

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