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Workin' On The List

Brian’s off work this week, and
we’re doing some holiday preparations of our own. Yesterday
we took the girls to a toy store for a meander through the aisles,
stirring the creative juices as the girls begin to ponder their
Christmas lists.

We’ve never done such things before, but truthfully
we’re having a hard time with Cora this year. What do you get
a two-year-old who already has all her sister’s old toys?
When Madeleine was two her big Christmas presents were the
trampoline, a dollhouse, and a baby care center replete with a
place to put the baby to sleep, bathe her, feed her, and more.
These things were all hits, but alas Cora already plays with

And yes, I know Christmas isn’t
about STUFF. But Maddie has some definite ideas for her own list,
and I don’t want Cora to have an empty Christmas in
comparison. Neither, though, do I want to purchase a bunch of
things she neither wants nor needs, so we’re trying to get
creative here.

Cora has one item on her list, from which she steadfastly refuses
to waver: a tree. A live tree. A live Christmas tree. That’s

I don’t know how this came about, but all Cora wants for
Christmas is a small live Christmas tree of her own, with a red
decoration on it. I’ve tried to explain that the whole family
will be getting a tree, and she absolutely doesn’t care.
Personally, I think it’s pretty cute that she settled on such
a Christmas gift and, on a recent trip to Home Depot, shrieked
“That’s IT!” as we wandered through the plant
nursery. But Brian is absolutely convinced that she will be sad if
the only thing Santa brings her is a tree, so he presses on and
tries to figure out what else the two year old wants.

For Maddie’s part, she’s sticking to the one-item list
as well, but for different reasons. Last year Maddie had a rather
extensive list that she’d rattle off, and of course we
couldn’t get everything. One of the items was a ballet barre
for practicing, and we didn’t buy it, and I have heard about
it for the past twelve months. Never mind that Santa brought her a
Thomas train table and a dozen cars and a track set – all she
can dwell on is that ballet barre. So yesterday morning at
breakfast as we were talking about the trip to the toy store,
Maddie declared, “I only want one thing on my list this year.
Last year I had three things on it and Santa didn’t bring me
one of them, so maybe if I only have one item on my list
he’ll be able to handle that.”

Ouch. Cut Santa some slack, kid.


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