Sunday, December 16, 2012

Countdown to Christmas

As Riley approaches the age of three her awareness of the holidays has astounded me. Sure, she doesn't quite get what Christmas really means. I don't totally blame her because 1. she's a little kid and 2. we don't talk a whole lot about religion. Even so, I've recently been reading her the story of Baby Jesus. In the end I don't want her to think this holiday is all about getting gifts. And in the future I really want to teach her the value of giving (and not just at Christmas, of course). But for now it is pretty fun to see how excited she is about the whole holiday.

Since she has been so focused on when Santa is going to bring her some presents I figured we needed to create a visual to help her understand. "Tomorrow", "next week", and so on are still concepts that she doesn't quite get. Once again, other bloggers have inspired me to make a paper chain to demonstrate the number of days we have until Christmas.

I took a snowman that she made at daycare and added the chain, and each day we take off one link of the chain to show that we are one day closer to Christmas.

Riley loves being able to take a link of the chain off each day. At first she wanted to take all the links off, but finally seems to understand that we only take one off today and have to wait until after we go to sleep and wake up the next morning to take off another.

Riley has really been into Christmas lights as well. Car rides at night include her yelling from the back seat "LIGHTS. THERE'S LIGHTS. AND THERE. MOMMY, I SEE LIGHTS. LIGHTS. LIGHTS.LIGHTS".

One night as I was walking home from the bus I noticed that quite a few houses on the next block are now lit up and a couple of them have some unique decorations that Riley might enjoy. We had been intending to go to Macy's Santaland last week, but it's amazing how a 4:00 am wake up can ruin your plans for the whole day (and a day I specifically took off of work). I was determined to do something related to the holiday season so I suggested we go out for a walk before Riley's bedtime. And hey, it was snowing! It was going to be sooo picturesque!

Yeah, not so much.

It was cold. And Riley did not like the snow in her eyes. And those 'unique' decorations? They moved and things that move seem to freak my kid out (with some exceptions). She wanted to be held much of the time, which was incredibly difficult to do (slippery winter coat against slippery winter coat just doesn't work). We did a loop so that we could see a couple blocks worth, but it wasn't as awesome as I hoped it would be. I guess next time we'll just stay in the car.

Yes, that's a couple of penguins on a igloo canon. Yeah, I don't get it either. It moved, but was behind a fence so Riley tolerated it.

I thought Riley would love this, but she made us carry her as we walked past it. It didn't move, but it was quite big and swayed a bit as the air swirled around in it.

Begging to be picked up.

Ok, so I know this is a terrible picture (at least worse than the others), but Riley made a cute comment when we walked past this house. When the deer's head bobbed up and down, Riley stopped to watch him and then proclaimed "that deer has the hiccups". Ah, out of the mouth of kids.

This weekend we did make it to Macy's Santaland. As I child, my mom took me each year so we started this tradition last year with Riley. The display has been the same for a few years, but it was still new to Riley since she doesn't quite have that long term memory thing down yet. Since Riley has the opportunity to see Santa at a family Christmas party we skip the part of having Riley sit on Santa's lap which is fine with me as the line for that is usually long.

Waiting in line. Accessories chosen by Riley.

As expected this place was packed, but we were still able to get some pictures without other people in them.  

Riley started to lose it a little about here. She's not really a fan of animatronics - especially if they are big and close by. We walked through the rest of the display fairly fast, checked out the gift shop and then got out of there.

It seems like a lot of work to head downtown, pay for parking, wait in line with a crowd for this display - especially when I am unsure how much Riley likes it. She seems interested, and then overwhelmed. Perhaps I am doing it more for me than for her, but it's hard to tell at this age. I hope that she likes it in the future, and if not, I hope I know when to honor her wishes to not go (and not push my agenda).

In the end we headed back to the skyway where Riley could run around freely, which apparently, was where the real fun was at. 

No comments:

Post a Comment

Love to see your comments.