“Jingle Bells, Jingle Bells” and so sings my three year old morning, noon and night. The fact that she’s not blessed with dulcet tones makes it even funnier. An off-key screech greets us in the morning, and a hushed hum lacking harmony filters down the monitor in the evening. This is it. My first Christmas in 32 years that Santa will Ho Ho his way down the chimney again and I’m as excited (possibly more so) than my apoplectically animated daughter who has been wearing her Santa dress every afternoon for 5 weeks in eager anticipation. We’ve just put the finishing touches to Santa’s cookie which we made (looking forward to that I must say!), and have decided which carrot to leave Rudolf. Somehow she’s got it into her head that it’s Santa’s birthday tomorrow and Christmas is his party – and who am I to rain on her parade? So apart from Jingle Bells we have to sing Happy Birthday to Santa on a regular basis.
We’ve given them their stockings which we’ll hang with great ceremony at the fireplace before they go to bed – although my 18 month old, Poppy, has gotten into hers and refuses to come out.
I think more than any other part of Christmas (apart from creeping downstairs in the morning with them to see if Santa has made his delivery of course), is putting them to bed tonight, whispering excitedly about Santa coming down the chimney (I love the fact she has accepted this with absolutely no doubt, as if it’s the most natural thing in the world) and then hubby and I will open a bottle of wine and wrap their presents and fill their stockings (and eat the rather yummy looking cookie). I am so excited I actually feel giddy.
It’s like the Christmas day of parenthood. This is what it’s all about. This makes the unendurable nights, the torturous tantrums, the frustrating suction of any sort of ‘me-time’ from my life worth it. This is the pay-off. The bells are jingling, and I can almost hear the sleigh bells above our house. Ho ho ho, and a merry Christmas to everyone. And for once, I won’t be grumbling when I hear jingle bells beside me at 6.30 am.