I couldn't help myself. This is what I came home to after working at Starbucks in the morning.
"Precious" might have to become a regular, non-ironic part of my vocabulary.
And while we're on the topic of precious, last night Mike read me to sleep while Alex laid in his lap. He read the Christmas chapter of Little House in the Big Woods, one of my favoritest of books. With all the recent posts I've read lately against Santa and gifts (as inevitably come each year via blogs, Facebook, etc.), I felt it was the perfect defense of the beauty of Christmas traditions:
"They played so hard all day that when night came, they were too excited to sleep. But they must sleep, or Santa Claus would not come. So they hung their stockings by the fireplace, and said their prayers, and went to bed.
[The children] lay there whispering till Ma said, 'Charles, those children never will get to sleep unless you play for them.' So Pa got his fiddle. The room was still and warm and full of fire-light. Ma's shadow, and Aunt Eliza's and Uncle Peter's were big and quivering on the walls in the flickering fire-light, and Pa's fiddle sang merrily to itself. It sang 'Money Musk,' and 'The Red Heifer,' 'The Devil's Dream,' and 'Arkansas Traveler.' And Laura went to sleep while Pa and the fiddle were both softly singing...
In the morning they all woke up almost at the same moment. They looked at their stockings, and something was in them. Santa Claus had been there. Alice and Ella and Laura in their red flannel nightgowns, and Peter in his red flannel nightshirt, all ran shouting to see what he had brought.
In each stocking there was a pair of bright red mittens, and there was a long, flat stick of red-and-white-striped peppermint candy, all beautifully notched along each side.
They were all so happy they could hardly speak at first. They just looked with shining eyes at those lovely Christmas presents. But Laura was happiest of all. Laura had a rag doll.
She was a beautiful doll. She had a face of white cloth with black button eyes. A black pencil had made her eyebrows, and her cheeks and her mouth were red with the ink made from pokeberries. Her hair was black yarn that had been knit and raveled, so that it was curly...
She was so beautiful that Laura could not say a word. She just held her tight and forgot everything else. She did not know that everyone was looking at her, till Aunt Eliza said:
'Did you ever see such big eyes!'"
I can't wait to see the magic and wonder and excitement in my own little girls eyes each Christmas morning.