So I really don't have to tell you that this Christmas thing, no matter how you celebrate, involves a lot prep work. There is constant internal dialogue in us telling us what we should be doing, mental lists waiting to be checked off, and reminders about what Christmas is all about. It is pretty easy to get wrapped up with all that needs to be done and miss the moments that make it worth it.
This morning Jon and I had an elaborate itinerary full of drop offs, pick ups, who's got the black party shoes, who's bringing the potluck food, who can get off work the earliest, where's the camera bag, snowsuits, change of clothes, no hat it will mess her hair, and of course don't forget all the regular stuff, back packs, recess snacks and home reading bag for big sister. As Jon and I reviewed our itinerary the thought of "who has a preschool concert at ten in the morning on a weekday" crossed our minds for just a millisecond. And I say for a millisecond because we both know better than to wish these tiny moments away.
I watched my little girl confidently walk up the stairs and take her place on stage for the first time without the security of her big sister or her best bud by her side. I was the mom crouched down in front of the stage, taking pictures and videos beaming with love and pride for my girl. She carefully watched her teacher's directions, singing and performing the actions to the songs that they had been learning. It was her time to shine. And it's those, "I couldn't possibly love you anymore than I do at this moment" feelings that we hang onto and bottle up and then use as motivation the next time complex planning is required.
None of the things we do really need to be done. Reminding myself of that keeps things in perspective. But if I didn't do the Christmas prep things, I wouldn't have artwork that makes me happy to look at.
And if we didn't make the effort to go to parties and celebrations, I never would have seen Callie sit on Santa's knee for the first time in her life! Don't get me started on how much she's growing...intellectually, physically and emotionally.
We will get through the prep work. And scattered in between all the things we should get done, the things that have to get done, and the things we don't feel like getting done... are our memories.