Cora loves the idea of Christmas. This year, she understands Who or What Santa Claus is. She already knows what she is going to put on her list. She wants her own little pink sewing machine, like Mommies! I'm pretty sure it is lurking in the closet at Nahni's waiting for Santa to pick it up. After hearing about my own mothers last minute drives to fetch roller skates and a two wheel bikey, I decided to play it safe. I can always return it, if she hasn't been good, or she changes her mind.
Besides that, she loves the idea of a Christmas Tree in the house! She likes it so much, she suggested we go get the one we had last year from the wood pile and put it back up. "It's not green!" I protested.
"I will paint it! That will be a good deal!" she said.
Then she saw the Christmas lights. My Mom picked up two strands of new Christmas lights, as our old ones were missing too many bulbs, or dead. She wanted to open them up immediately, and the need for the tree became urgent. "Its not Christmas yet!" I informed her as I put the lights downstairs.
"Yes it IS Christmas!" She retorted.
An hour later, grumpy that I would not let her drink my soda pop she wandered downstairs. I caught her with one pack of lights hacked open with her notorious child approved scissors. Fortunately she did not cut the wires. I told her to go sit on her bed. Then I put the lights out of her reach in the room she is forbidden to enter.
I went upstairs to explain to her that it is NOT christmas yet, and that I am upset with her. I find her and Nyobi sitting on Coras bed, drinking my soda pop.
Two pairs of guilty blue eyes and two sets of chipmunk cheeks stared back at me.
When is christmas? For Cora right now, its just a word. The gift of seeing my daughters working together, of hearing Cora willing to WORK for her fun (I'll paint it MOM!) The family around me. That is the joy of christmas.
Maybe when the actual "holiday" arrives, Santa will bring me a padlock for my child free room downstairs, and some more soda pop.