Friday, December 3, 2010

Deck The Halls

PhotoStory Friday
Hosted by Cecily and Lolli

Our Christmas decorations and trees are now officially up.

I will not lie and I'll admit that while I was setting up our extra large prelit Christmas tree that we bought brand new last year and I discovered that two strings of lights were not working I had less than peaceful thoughts.  When it took me close to two hours to figure out what the problem was I was not in that lovely peaceful place I was talking about in my previous post.  Instead I was fighting really hard not to let a string of profanities leave my mouth.  But I did find the problem eventually and soon that peaceful feeling started creeping back in.

And then the kids woke up from their naps and all chaos broke loose.  Their little heads nearly exploded when they saw the Christmas trees all lit up and every shelf and table, nook and craney stuffed with snowmen and reindeer, and of course the nativity.  It was almost too much for them to bear.

Now this is the part when I surprised even myself.  In the past I have always decorated the trees while the boys were fast asleep.  Just thinking about all of the craziness that would ensue if I had them joining in at such young ages made my head hurt.  Plus, I like my trees to look neat and tidy.  There is no way I could stand by and let the ornaments be splashed about the trees willy nilly.  But this year, this year I threw caution to the wind.  I took my own advice, gave myself that peaceful feeling, and just let everyone enjoy the season.  And, boy, did they!

It turned out to be a very important lesson for me on letting go.  Something that is so often difficult for me to do.  But because I decided to ease up and let go we had a super fun night.  A night I know I will always remember.  And to my shock and elation the kids did a GREAT job decorating.  I couldn't believe how thoughtful and careful they were.  I was so proud of them.  There was no fighting over ornaments, no whining, or crying.  Everyone was having a wonderful time.
After all their hard work the kids just wanted to lie beneath the tree and watch a Christmas movie. Even Grace went and laid down between her brothers and stayed there for a good amount of time.

Peaceful feeling restored.


Krystyn said...

Those prelit trees are the death of me. I cut the lights off last year!

Your tree looks great and I love that they were laying under it!

And, the group shot? Totally Christmas card material!

Tabor said...

I remember the decorating of the trees. I also was controlling and artistic and impatient. Eventually I had to admit that I was not the queen and our tree looked just fine.

Kat said...

Krystyn- I KNOW!!!!! I so want to use that picture as our Christmas card photo but I already got our Christmas cards with our family picture on it. Boo. Oh well. ;)

Suldog said...

I used to love to help decorate the tree when I was a kid! Still like to do it, as a matter of fact. Ours will go up in a week or so.

Jessa (bipolararmywife) said...

I still can't let my kids help decorate and they are 9 & 7. It drives me nuts where they put things and they've broken a few when I've tried. So I put it up and they get to enjoy it.

Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

We're doing our tree tonight!
Glad your night went well;)

Mom24 said...

Look at Molly laying right there with the kids. Adorable.

Enjoy it. In just a few years you'll be begging them to help you do the tree. Jacob and Julianna still love it, but my older two are definitely over it.

Hope you continue to enjoy the season.

Mel said...

I love the shot under the tree!!!

I'm totally anal about my tree. So you know what I did? I bought the girls their own 6 foot tree last year after Christmas for less than $20. I gave them all the non-breakable ornaments and let them go crazy this year with their tree while I went to my happy place with mine. Works for me! ")

Dawn said...

These are such sweet pictures. The tree looks beautiful. They did a great job decorating.

lime said...

i'm so glad it worked out so nicely and was such a good time for everyone. they do have a way of surprising you don't they?

Jill said...

Love the photo of the kids ... SO SO great!

Dysfunctional Mom said...

I have had to give up that control too, and its HARD ! Sometimes I un-bunch them when the kids aren't looking. Shhh!
Your tree looks lovely!

Karen Deborah said...

Kat this is so cool. I used to let the kids help and then rearrange the stuff. This year Jen and the kids did most of the decorating and I love it, haven't changed anything. I'm totally with you on the peaceful thing. If "we the people" stop allowing Christmas to be dictated by commercialism, it will stop. Jennifer is talking about rumballs and gingerbread so looks like this week we will be baking goodies. I still remember those types of activities when I was a child. You have such a beautiful family and your puppy!!!! Your puppy is absolutely gorgeous and her laid back disposition shows on every picture. She is such a great dog already! She is going to be really big like my boy. He is 8 months and just huge. He can stick his face up on the kitchen counter tops, and he is still growing.

Speaking of growing your little men are looking so much bigger than last year. I can't believe how big Grace is and she is so cute. I love her brown hair in contrast to your 3 blond boys. Great pictures.

Tonya said...

Great pictures! I love putting our tree up too :)

Kelly said...

Love that last picture! I seriously want your dog! :)

I let the boys decorate the tree and then Todd has to remind me not to touch anything because he knows I'm just itching to take the little clusters of ornaments and spread them out evenly. LOL The tree looks gorgeous anyway and they are so proud of their work.

I think you may have started a new tradition!

Kat said...

Kelly- Oh don't get me wrong, after they went to bed a spread a few ornaments out, but now NEARLY as many as I thought I would have too. I was really surprised. But yes, my fingers get the itch and I just have to fix some of them. :)

Tracey - Just Another Mommy Blog said...

Wait, who is that girl-child? You have a baby girl. She is BIG!!!


They look so happy. Congratulations on letting go and Merry Christmas!

Riahli said...

Awwww...that made me tear up, how sweet. :) Love the pictures, the honesty and the great family moment. {I always want to curse when I can't figure out the Christmas lights... every year at least one strand isn't working... drives me crazy!} The looks on your kids faces as they carefully hung the ornaments... priceless!!

That last picture is absolutely adorable! :)

Elaine A. said...

Y'all are just SO cute - those last to photos make my heart smile SO MUCH!!! And I'm so glad you let the kids help this year. I did too and it went pretty well.

Although B would put an ornament on the tree and then his little brother G would want to put one RIGHT next to it - it was SO funny!

I'm so glad you found peace in this... :D

p.s. my pre-lit tree just has some dark spots this year... ugh.

Emily said...

I think it looks great!! And I love it's location!

Rima said...

It looks awesome! I have control issues, too. As you know, I re-hung most of our ornaments after the kids were in bed :)

Lindsay said...

Great last pic - and kuddos to letting go this year! It's hard I know....but man - your kids did a good job....all my ornaments ended up in the same 12" square foot section! LOL.

imbeingheldhostage said...

How sweet. What a precious time this is for your family! I bet it was fun decorating your new house :-)

Lisa said...

Fun pictures ~ glad everyone survived & peace is restored ;) I let the kids help with the tree in our family room & they get to hang "their" ornaments on the big tree in the livingroom. Fair, right?

Brittany said...

Ok, I am very late responding to this... but... I love the last photo! :) It's just perfect! Hope your family is doing well!

maggie said...

K, one more getting caught up comment. I'm sure that the kids had a blast! As much as I love seeing the perfectly trimmed display trees, they remind me of department stores, not "home." Home is where the tree can have a mishmash of handmade decorations, cherished ornaments that have been passed down for generations and all of it out of order and crazy looking because everyone helped. Love, love love these shots. You have the cutest family.

Words To Live By

Be grateful for each new day.
A new day that you have never lived before.
Twenty-four new, fresh, unexplored hours to use usefully and profitably.
We can squander, neglect, or use them.
Life will be richer or poorer by the way we use today.
Finish every day and be done with it.
You have done what you could;
some blunders and absurdities crept in;
forget them as soon as you can.
Tomorrow is a new day.
You shall begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be
encumbered with your old nonsense.

-Ralph Waldo Emerson