Christmas Magic Moments

Christmas may not have gone completely to plan, but that doesn’t mean it was devoid of magic and it would be completely wrong for me to let it pass by without recording. After all, Thomas is a two year old boy, for whom the idea of Christmas finally means something. He knew that Father Christmas would come to visit and leave him a stocking under the tree, as he kept telling us on Christmas Eve: “Father Christmas coming. Coming in his sleigh!” There is no denying that he knows what presents are and that “Thomas like presents”.

The look on his face when he saw his stocking and presents was priceless, and I gained a new perception of the magic of Christmas in that moment. We kept it simple this year, with just a few gifts in his stocking – although he was super impressed that there was “more” after each little gift – and just a couple of other gifts.

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Presents were somewhat hastily arranged under the tree, as we hadn’t dared leave them there overnight in case of flooding!

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“More presents?!”

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“Chuclug!” (No stocking would be complete, for either Ian or myself, without chocolate coins!)

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He’s really in to the present opening lark now. We were impressed that he stopped and really played with each new thing before moving on though, and his presents ended up lasting three full days until the last one was unwrapped.

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He’s barely got the corner of the paper off before he began shouting “Farm, farm!” – his present from my parents, which has of course beceom “Farmer McColl’s farm” (It’s a Thomas thing!”

His stocking from us contained a Thomas and Friends DVD, some washable pens (he’s obsessed with pens and usually rejects crayons now) some scissors (likewise, obsessed. We got some fab plastic ones that are not sharp, won’t cut clothes, skin or hair, but do a good job on paper) some Happyland figures, chocolate coins and a chocolate snowman figure. I think we got it about right. His “main presents from us were Duplo and a drawing mat. Of course he was thoroughly spoilt by friends and family too, and we’re still working out exactly where to fit all this new stuff in our already crowded house! His haul included the farm above, a play rocket, shopping to go with his play cash register, and lot of new books.

We also wanted to start some new family Christmas Eve traditions this year. I have plenty of my own already from childhood; Icing the Christmas Cake whilst Carols From Kings plays quietly in the background. Making Mince Pies; Eating Spaghetti Bolgnaise for dinner, always followed by ice cream; hanging stockings on the tree (never the end of the bed!) The ones I most wanted to introduce with Thomas were new pyjamas on Christmas Eve, and the reading of The Night Before Christmas.

I don’t totally “get” Christmas pyjamas, especially for kids. If they get them on Christmas Eve surely they can only wear them for a week and will likely have grown out of them by next year. The answer I usually get is that they can wear them throughout the year, even though it’s not Christmas. But in this case I really would rather he wore non-Christmas pyjamas for the one night of the year that Christmas pyjamas are most suitable, than wear Christmas ones on many nights that aren’t Christmas. So this year Thomas got Thomas the Tank Engine Pyjamas, which we wrapped and allowed him to open before bath time on Christmas eve. I know as a child that opening one present on Christmas Eve, even if I knew what it was going to be, would have calmed my excitement enormously!

We never read The Night Before Christmas as children. We had plenty of other Chistmas books that we did read, but since discovering Clement Clarke Moore’s poem as an older child, I’ve always loves it. Thomas had a very favourable reaction when we took him to the Unicorn Theatre to see a short play of the same title that included the poem in its entirety, and this cemented my desire to make it the final Christmas Eve bedtime story.

Other magic moments included finding him hiding with a tube of Pringles…

IMG_1282I know, I know… I can hear you tutting from here!

… and the joy he got from my old “Streak Racer” car racing track

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Thomas certainly had a magical Christmas, no matter what else happened. And that, I think, is the most important thing of all!

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