Bittersweet holidays

I ordered our Christmas cards the other day. I’ve been holding off, as there’s a really cute one for families welcoming a new baby. But I’m acknowledging that won’t be us this year. David, the ever awesome, said he’d be delighted to toss the first set and pay for the other ones if something magical happens! It’s just holiday cards. Still, those stupid little heart paper cuts add up.

We also feel like brats even complaining with two beautiful kids at home. Like at the Ronald McDonald House with Tess, we know that everyone – even the fortunate – have a right to their pain and need. Still, we’re hearing a lot of

That’s for the best! You’re kids are so little.

That section of the peanut gallery reinforces our guilt. The other section has us howling with laughter at their indignation on our behalf! But we love how close the kids are. They learn stuff at the same time, are on the same schedule, enjoy the same books and adventures, and share toys (so less stuff). We chose to have kids close together so as parents we would have as much energy (read: youth) as possible, but the other benefits have outstripped the logistics by a wide margin. Oh well.

We had family in this week and the kids loved every minute. We explored a new museum, snuggled and read books next to our first fire in the new family room, sang Christmas carols and went out to dinner. They even got to go to the park yesterday with brave Joy! All in all, the small pleasures of parenthood and our life still overflow the cup. That doesn’t take away the pangs of a missing baby, but it certainly soothes.

We followed a great Thanksgiving up with decorating the tree, and Tess was beside herself. She points out every ornament she hung on the tree to anyone who will listen, and is very serious about her Winnie the Pooh stocking. My favorite? She hung all of the first dozen ornaments on one branch, stacked. Reorg was required.

And many thanks to Micky and Kat for the Advent tradition! The kids had huge eyes when they opened the Advent boxes and saw all of those presents. We love explaining who sent them, and Tess now says “Micky and Kat!” when we open them in the evening under the tree.