Dear Santa,

Please send me 72 hour days and a remote control that puts life on hold so I can take naps…

My daughter has started making her Christmas wish list early. For some odd reason a Toy Story ” Woody” doll is at the top of the list. We have no idea where the inspiration for it came from but she asked for it last year as well and we distracted her with the other shiny stuff on her list instead. a) because we couldn’t find one and b) she has too many dolls and stuffed animals as it is.

She and I have an agreement that predates all of it anyway: No more stuffed animals or toys until we go through her room and cull out all the other stuff that has accumulated. She was all for the idea when she found out she could get new stuff. LOL I told her I would take photos of her old stuff so she could keep the memory and there were going to be a few things that would end up being packed away for safe keeping; special gifts, like from her beloved great-grandmother who is now gone fall under that category.

I have gotten practical about Christmas, looking more for functional goodies for her more than for trinkets. She loves to paint and create so anything I can buy her to encourage that – canvas, colored pencils, papers – I try to pick up throughout the year. She still gets clothes, pretties for her hair, the occasional toy and doll but it isn’t over-running her room like it used to. Last year her father found her a lovely cedar chest off Craigslist so the rest of her animals are in there and not strewn around so that helped too.

One of my most treasured holiday memories was from when I was about 13. My cousin Sandy gave me an enormous box, huge, full of individually wrapped mini presents floating in a sea of shredded newspaper. I remember opening the box and the sheer joy of rummaging through it looking for treasure. I don’t remember everything in the box but I do remember getting the LP for the Fleetwood Mac Rumors album. Yup, dating myself.

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