It’s difficult to believe that next week this time, Christmas will be over and done.
I don’t have to tell anyone (especially wives and mothers), how much work goes into making this 24-hour span of time a particularly magical, warm, and loving event. And then boom! It’s all over but breaking down the boxes and eating up the leftovers.
Months and weeks of preparation…. for this. It’s a bit of a letdown.
But since this blog is not just about quilting, let me share an event from my Christmas Past bag way past bag that just about topped off the eggnog in my Christmas history. The time period is somewhere in the early 1990’s. My son was either in his late preschool years or early elementary. My daughter was three years older than this. They were both young enough that as a parent, you moved heaven and earth to make sure they had what was on their Christmas list, just so you could push that I’ve-Stopped-Believing-in-Santa back as far as you possibly could.
Let me insert at this point, my daughter is a lot like me. She’s a list maker and a goal setter. When I asked for her Christmas list in September, she went to her room, wrote it down, and promptly gave it to me, penmanship and spelling correct. Then she asked me if I had any questions, so when I did talk to Santa, I could be very clear on what she wanted.
Nope. I was good. And luckily already had most those things on her list.
My son…well…let’s just say he was flexible. He was still pretty young, so I offered to write the list for him if he would just tell me what he wanted. This worked for him, so he went into dictation mode and I wrote down everything. Most of it I was aware of…some of it was news to me.
It took two trips to a couple of big box stores, early in the morning before work, but by December 1, I had it all and even had most of it put together and well-hidden. And suddenly, they were out of school for the holidays and staying with their grandmother while I was finishing up at work.
Then it happened. My phone rang one afternoon at lunch and it was my mother-in-law. “Matt needs to talk to you,” she explained. “He’s having a fit…”
A second later, the young voice of my youngest child said, “Mom…you know that list you made for Santa?”
Yes. Indeed I did. Everything was crossed off and I had done the duty of a good mamma.
“Well,” he continued. “I left off something.”
Panic ran through my veins like a fever. He was my youngest and I wanted to keep that Santa magic with him for as long as I could. My daughter was already getting suspicious.
“What is it?” I asked.
“I want a guitar.”
Relief flooded over me like a warm shower. I could pick that up on the way home from work.
“A green one.”
Panic again. My heart couldn’t take much more.
“Does it have to be green, son?”
“Yes. Green is my favorite color.”
These were the days before Amazon. Internet shopping was a distant blip on the horizon. So, there was no point, click, and Prime next-day delivery. No sir. You got out in the trenches and braved the crowds and fought for what you wanted. Naively I thought to myself, “This shouldn’t be too hard. I mean, how many kids would want green guitars? I bet the stores are full of them.”
Guitars, yes. Green ones, no. Apparently, my kid was the only one who wanted a green guitar.
Bill traveled a lot, so he was on the lookout. A good friend of mine who was nearly a professional shopper pulled in all her resources and couldn’t find one. I happened to mention this quest to a lady I worked with. Patricia, mother of four children who had been exactly where I was, rolled her eyes at me and said, “The Lord will provide.”
And He did. Through Patricia’s husband, Chester. Who found me a green guitar with three days to spare. It was in Virginia and he drove up there himself to pick it up.
And a little boy’s belief in Santa was kept intact for a few more years.
I had a chance to be a “Chester” this year to my own grand darlings. My oldest, Evangeline, will be five in January. And she’s smarter than even her mother was. She’s already getting that Santa-suspicion. It started when we went to Graylyn for Breakfast with Santa and Santa did not spend adequate time with his facial hair. His black locks could be seen under the hat and through his beard.
Which, of course, Evangeline did not miss seeing. And commenting on.
“I don’t think that was the real Santa,” she told all of us.
To her credit, Elli look at Evangeline like her older sister had lost leave of her senses.
“Of course that was Santa,” we all told her.
The look on her face told me that she was way too smart for that, but she let the matter drop.
Last week, my daughter sent me a text and said the girls wanted a Doc McStuffins All-in-One Nursery Playset. Two issues here – the girls just let Meg know that they wanted it and it is the hottest item out there. We searched online for several minutes and the best thing we could find was a December 27th delivery.
And then … a miracle. A Christmas miracle. The Disney Store had two left. I’m not sure where this particular Disney Store was, but for $97, plus the code JINGLE I had next-day shipping to my front door. Bingo, bango, bongo, point and click and it was on my front porch on Monday. It sounds as if there are 90 million pieces in that box. I am so very, very glad I don’t have to put that thing together.
And hopefully, I’ve pushed that I’m-not-so-sure-about-Santa deadline back a year or two with my oldest granddaughter.
Have a Merry Christmas with your loved ones…
Love and Stitches,
Sherri and Sam
PS—An epilogue on the Green Guitar. Unfortunately, it didn’t last long at my house, as Meg accidently stepped on the guitar neck and broke it. Strangely enough, Matt never really took up the guitar as an instrument. He became a drummer and played in several bands in high school and college. I purchased a set of Pearl Drums for him during this time and they sat in his Man Cave until recently.
Funny how kids grow up…