Oh (No) Christmas Tree

Isn’t it funny how we as parents, we as people, create such great expectations for things. Inevitably, things do not turn out quite how we expect. Whether good or bad.

Like taking the girls into the city for Santa photos. I was dreading this. The drive, the mall, the lines, the photo. Nope, did not look forward to it at all but thought it was something I should do. Shoulds suck ass.

But that is another topic for another day.

Today is about expectations. Expecting the worst. And ending up with a most delectable day with my girls!

Brennyn sleeps on the way. Unheard of these days. Kaya sings me christmas tunes. Mall is not busy. We’re there early on a week day and we easily get the exchange done. Next to Homesense, where my girls are angels, if by angels you mean they occupy themselves with giggles while simultaneously not breaking anything as I do. We still have 30 minutes to kill before Santa comes so I decide to surprise them with a visit to the Cupcake store. Well, by god, this is the most brilliant (though bank-breaking) idea I have had in a long time. Girls in their Christmas best sitting amongst pink walls, Alice in Wonderland, and the creamy deliciousnesses of freshly baked cupcakes. YUM! Both the cupcakes and my girls.

Now that we are rightly satiated with sugar, it is time to see Santa! There is a slight line but the perfect amount for Kaya to psyche herself up to talk to Santa. Which she does. Full on talks to him. This too is unheard of!

Brennyn is too little to understand ‘psyching oneself up’ so she screams. The photographer frets about getting the perfect photo. The elf tries to incite smiles. Santa ignores the screams and continues his chat with Kaya. I just laugh and ask the photographer to get one of her crying please. This seems shocking to him. But for me, this is real. This is what happened. It is perfect.

Please see picture in my previous post.

After photos, we head home. Both girls sleep.

The day has been fantastic.

Expectations mean nothing.

Like Christmas tree trimming. Ah, thoughts of Bal and I with Hot Chocolate Bailey’s while Christmas carols play and we tell the girls stories of all our decorations we’ve accumulated on our travels as the girls giggle and run excitedly to the tree placing ornaments with glee.

Great expectations that mean nothing.

Reality is, we have wine, not Bailey’s. Wine that keeps almost being tipped over until I put it in the kitchen never to be drank again.

2/3 of our lights don’t work. Anticipation suffers a crashing blow while we have to stop to go buy new lights.

We don’t buy enough lights.

But we make do. We have to.

Last year we had a very high concentration of decorations at the bottom of the tree since that is what Kaya decorated. This year she passes them all up to me so I can put them up high and away from Brennyn. Which does nothing to stop Brennyn from reaching up high to get them anyways.

Decorations break.

The girls get bored.

Kaya tells me at the end that our tree “does not look lovely” at all.

I am offended and pissy that my great expectations have crashed harder than my shattered decorations. But the truth is, she is right. It does not look lovely at all.

Sensing my annoyance, Bal takes the girls upstairs for a bath. I get my Bailey’s. I re-organize the tree. I dim the lights and turn off that god-awful Christmas music station.

I smile at the loveliness.

Kaya runs downstairs. She apologizes. She looks at the tree again. “Woooaaa, it’s beeeeeyutiful!” I don’t know if she’s lying to me but it doesn’t matter.

We snuggle. She tells me my drink smells like stinky. We laugh. And so it is that that moment, the one not thought up, prepared for or expected, is the treasured one.

I’m going to email me this post one year hence to remind me of this lesson.

Expectations mean nothing. Moments are everything.

So here, a few of our moments. Sadly, most pictures and all the video I took from that day have disappeared off my iPhone. Still, I did manage a few with my real camera too.


This is cheezy Kaya, cheezy Riley and our Poopin Reindeer. Please note Brennyn scoopin the poops. To be discarded in her mouth. Sigh.

Kissy Brennyn Monster. After telling her a million times "NO!" for grabbing decorations off the tree, I tell her we only kiss the decorations. So now she kisses everything! Not that she didn't anyways. Tis her nature.

Impressed with the Pink Alien Robot decoration from San Francisco.

Fake Ugly Tree in the girls bedroom. Somehow we end up with a blue strand of lights (yuk) so this poor, sad tree got all the discards. Plus a few of the girls contributions- a crown, a highheel and some toys.



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