Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Best Gift

Christmas morning arrived before 7:00 a.m. at our house. Joe-Henry usually wakes up about 6:30 to use the bathroom, and I usually hear his pitiful cries for "Maaawwwmm" because he's afraid to walk down the hall in the dark by himself. So I wait in the bathroom with him, then of course there is the begging for snuggling, and he's usually too polite to refuse me. Anyway, we're snuggled up, and he's chatting away, wondering what Santa brought, and if he left a letter (she did), when I finally said, "you know, we could just get up now and go see", and he thought that was a terrific idea.

I'm remembering myself at his age, and Christmas morning was chaos: I don't believe I stopped to take a breath when opening packages. I usually had all my presents counted, and if I remembered to say thank you, it was usually because my mom was threatening to send everything back if I didn't. But somehow, this trait didn't rub off on my son - the first thing he wanted to do yesterday morning, before checking to see if Santa left anything, before tearing into the giant packages that have been mocking him for days by the tree, was to give me MY present. He was so excited about it. He has totally caught my husband's gift giving gene too. They are both excellent at getting the perfect gift. It's usually something you had no idea you wanted or needed, and it's always something lovely and useful, as well as sentimental.

So I sat on the couch and he got it from under the tree, and I unwrapped a movie I hadn't seen in years and didn't own until Christmas morning. Anne of Green Gables, with Megan Follows. When I was 29 I played Anne at Seattle Children's Theater. It's one of my favorite theater experiences, and the movie is just so lovely and perfect, and it never fails to make me weep. I saw it a while ago at Costco, and sort of said "awwww! I love this movie!", and it must have been the way I said it, because he was so excited to give it to me - he just knew that it was perfect, and he was right.

After that, we went downstairs to open Santa presents, then back upstairs for an iChat with the Grandparents, then the next couple hours were spent leisurely opening gifts, stopping to play for a while, then on to the next one. It didn't feel overwhelming, it felt nice. I was so proud of him for taking the time to appreciate everything, genuinely, and be thankful without having to be reminded. It was a relief after last year's bout of the gimme's to realize that it was mostly just an age appropriate, yet still really irritating, phase.

Hope you all had a wonderful day, with just enough snow to make it magical.


Stutopian said...

Anne I'm glad you found a way to remove the frenzy from Christmas Day. Sounds like you discovered a bit of the peace that everyone talks about. I wish that we had gotten more than a flurry, but it was nice anyway.

Donna said...

Sounds heavenly! That is so wonderful that JH paid attention to your comments, even when they weren't directed at buying. I have to say mine seem to be picking up on the "mom would really like that" idea, even if they lack the necessary credit card to order the Betty Crocker Cake Decorating Kit from the TV. ;0) My second-grader's class has a "House Cup" competition (ala Harry Potter) each quarter and they earn points/dollars to spend at their class auction. Each kid brings two used toys/movies etc. (or new food) to auction. My kid spent the lion's share of his bucks on a sweet little teddy bear holding two roses and wrapped it up all by himself. Sniff sniff. Kind of offsets the fact that he has been continually "accidentally" injuring his little brother ever since Christmas break began....

And there is hope for the Mighty Hunter who for the first time since we were dating was inspired to pull off a huge surprise gift that made me cry.

On another note, no more snow. Please. (We're supposed to get more tonight and we need to get to OK tomorrow to see the Mighty Hunter's grandma.)

anniemcq said...

Donna - your sons' gift made ME cry! I love that!
And kudo's to the MH for the huge surprise! Can't wait to see some pictures!

We're expecting snow here today, but I'll keep my fingers crossed that the snowstorms leave you alone!

Debbie said...

That is the sweetest thing! It always amazes me how sweet and thoughtful our children can be! And can I tell you what a fan I am of all Anne of Green Gables books and movies!! I think I've read every book in the series a million times and never get tired of the, May be time to pick them up again to share with little 8 year old!

Kari said...

Aw, now that is a special gift from a special someone, and you'll always put the two together. Beautiful.