Thursday, December 27, 2007

So I found out what Christmas is all about for our family. It's pretty much just a big threat to get the children to clean up or be good.

"If you don't help clean up then I am going to cancel Christmas forever!"

Okay, I didn't ever go to that extreme, but I found myself using Christmas and presents as a bargaining chip to try to get him to stop fighting, crying, and to get him to clean up and do his chores. My son would always come back with something along the lines of, "If you don't want to give presents then that means you don't love Jesus." Oh this kid knows how to really push my buttons... In the mean time my little girl just ran around being good and truly earning all the presents she got. In the end I didn't throw out any presents, even though I really wanted to, and we had a good Christmas. Next year I hope I can abolish the Christmas Threat attitude and replace it with something more positive.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

My husband and I are trying to figure out what defines Christmas at our house. We of course want it to be centered around Christ, but as much as we emphasize Him, around here the kids are still mostly awed by the lights and decorations and the allure of gifts for themselves. The youngest of course doesn't have any clue about presents and she just likes to see how often she can get away with pulling something off the tree. We have decided that Santa Clause will not be a part of Christmas around here. My husband feels deeply that we should not lie to the kids. I don't care that much for Santa Clause so I support him on this. We have told our son that Santa is not real, but he insists that he is. He likes to play the "Is he real?" game. It goes like this. "Is Ron Paul real?" "Yes," I tell him. "Is Superman real?" "No," I tell him. "Is President Hinkley real?" "Yes," I tell him. "Is Santa Clause real?" "No," I tell him. "Yes, he is mom, because my cousin said so, and I saw him at the church." In addition to taking away Santa Clause from our children we have also banned "made in China" items from our gift giving, and since almost all toys are made in china these days, our kids won't be getting any toys for Christmas. And to top it off we also won't be having any candy. My husband and I both have stopped eating candy, I've only been doing it for a few months and I make a few exceptions, but my husband hasn't had candy in years. It isn't as bad as it sounds, the kids will get plenty of goodies and sugar, it just won't be "candy." We'll have granola bars, and fruit snacks, and dried fruit, and beef jerky, and nuts and goldfish crackers. I'm sure they will get plenty of candy from other people, and that is fine, they just won't get it from their parents. So after all this rambling I now come to the funny story that I was going to share...

On Friday night I told the kids that we had to clean the house before we went to get a Christmas tree, so we all worked together to get the house cleaned, by the next morning the house was a mess again, so we cleaned up again and while we cleaned my husband and I decided that we wanted to go to DI and see if we could get a decent fake tree. We jumped in the car and went on our way. We found a tree at DI and decided it would work, but lo and behold our son was heart broken, he wanted a real tree! My husband and I were feeling pretty bad that we were letting him down, especially with all our other tyrannical Christmas rules and he had worked so hard to help clean. So we gave in and went to the tree lot. There is tree lot in our area that sells $5 trees as well as larger more beautiful trees. The $5 trees are small and sparse, but they are actually quite adequate and top off at about 5 feet high. When we got to the lot there were only about 4 of these little trees left. We told our son to pick one. He reacted by throwing a big fit..."I want a normal tree, these aren't normal trees, these aren't normal!" He went on and on about how not "normal" they were and how unfair it was, but he couldn't explain to us what he meant by normal. We showed him a bunch of the other trees that were $20-$60 some of them he thought were normal, but we explained that they cost too much and so we had to choose from the small trees. He continued to throw his fit. My husband and I were feeling stupid for giving in in the first place and thinking that we were going to go back to get the fake tree, when all of a sudden the kid perks up and says "Here's one! This one is Normal!" It was one of the $5 trees that we had looked at first. So we all agreed that it was "Normal," and we bought it and went home.

Still after all this rambling what I really wanted to share was my item listed on Etsy.