Sunday, December 2

The Advent of Christmas

December 2 - Christmas is screaming upon us! There are a multitude of events that I'm getting ready for and I just survived one annual holiday event: The Twins Sleepover! My beautiful sister Susan and her stalwart husband Patrick were blessed almost 5 years ago with the two most wonderful twins on the face of the Earth. Braeden and Taylor arrived a couple months early (in February) and quickly wrapped their Aunt Chris around their little fingers. We first met in the hospital NICU. I had to keep washing my hands because I couldn't stop crying and my nose kept running. They were so tiny...Braeden's pacifier covered about half of his face. Now they are four years old, about four feet tall and the only people in this world that I love the same amount are Jack and Jacob (my other nephews).

A new tradition has been born. On the day that their parents attend a company Christmas dinner, the twins come to my house for a sleepover. I am exhausted. Their Aunt Mo (Denise) took them to ride the Christmas train and see Santa yesterday afternoon. I understand they also enjoyed the magic of driving through the car wash at Sheetz. Hearing about that reminded me of the first time I ever went through a car wash. It was my Granddaddy Miller (Mom's dad) and I probably wasn't much older than Braeden and Taylor. It really WAS exciting! And since I only had seen cars washed with a hose and bucket - I also felt pretty fancy having the car automatically washed. When I drive past that building now, I still remember that first car wash with my Granddaddy.

After the exciting outing they returned to our house for spaghetti dinner. And for dessert we all got to partake in sugar cookies that the twins had made with their grandmother (they call her Nanu) in the afternoon. They were some seriously unattractive cookies - and they didn't taste very good....but we praised them as though they had been made by a famous pastry chef. Aunt Mo gave hers a suspicious look and asked Braeden if he had washed his hands before making her cookie. He said no...but he had used a spoon. Mo looked a little grey in the face, but ate her cookie and declared it the best she had ever had. We may all go to hell for lying, but the joy on our precious chefs' faces were worth the trip.

After dinner and changing into pajamas, the twins visited the magical land that their Aunt Chris lives in: the basement! They were enthralled by the water bed, intrigued by the ceiling covered with "big black CDs" (they are LPs screwed to the floor joist), fascinated by the pull chain that makes the overhead light turn on and off...but they were enchanted by the Christmas trees that light up with the click of a remote control. Yes, I already have Christmas trees in my room. Three of them to be exact - one big one that is right side up, two little ones that hang upside down from the ceiling. And before family members point this out - they are not "already" there. They are "still" there. They haven't been down in four years. But at least this time, they are artificial. I love my Christmas trees and sometimes in the middle of summer, when I'm feeling blue...I can light them up and just feel better.

We read some stories. We laughed and talked. It was a great way to kick off Christmas.

And when I woke this morning to the sound of little feet above my head...and towers of dominoes falling...and something like dice being rolled?...and laughter... Well, I am glad that the sleepover happens. And I'm kind of glad it doesn't happen too often. But (shh...don't tell Susan...) it might be okay if it happened more than once a year.

I love my niece and nephews.
You're my favorite.

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