Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Straight Talk About Santa

Well, I did it. The day I have been dreading has come to pass.

I told Carson straight out, "there is no Santa." I also said, "the presents; they're from us. the tree; we put it up."

Where to start on this post? I am so torn on this issue! Sometimes I just want to say FORGET SANTA! But then I remember all the wonderful memories from my childhood. And I think about the joy and excitement I see in Matt when he puts up Santa's tree and then waits in anticipation for the kids to see it. It is a "magical", wonderful time for our family.

Matt and I grew up knowing the true reason for Christmas. More emphasis was always put on the birth of Jesus and why he came than on Santa. My kids know WHO Christmas is about. JESUS. But should we remove Santa from the picture? I struggle with this question.

We do not have to take the same path in our lives as our parents. We do not have to take the same approach to holidays with our children, how we worship God, discipline, educate, or ANYTHING as the one our parents took when raising us. We can CHOOSE differently. But what is right? What is most important? What is best for our children? What will grow them towards being Godly young people with immense LOVE for all of mankind? That is what I am trying to determine here.

I feel good about where we are at. My parents NEVER had a straight talk with me about Santa. I wish they had. I am embarrassed to think about how long I believed in him. Of course I guessed it, but I think I might have been in denial for a long time. My mom always said "as long as we believe in Santa, he will keep coming." Meaning, we just say we believe, even if we don't, and whoever is bringing the presents will keep bringing them! So that was the extent of our conversation. I never knew the history of Santa.

For the longest time early in our marriage, I wanted to take that approach with my kids. I really hated the idea of saying the words "Santa is not real". But I know my kids. And they are not me. And I am glad I did it.

Carson, he is great. He is the best. How bittersweet for me that my little boy is becoming a young man already. He handled the news well. I was so worried and dreading that conversation because his reactions can be a bit strong. He has a history of meltdowns when dealing with disappointment. And I also didn't want him to be hurt. My hope was that he would accept the news well and know that everything we do and say is in love and with only the best intentions. If he thought of us as liars, that would be terrible! I tried really hard to be sloppy, even last year, so he could figure it out on his own or at least ask the question to open that conversation! But he was really hanging on and we were risking him being the only third grader in his class who didn't know. I think he is actually relieved to know the truth and not have to wonder or guess or try to figure it out anymore. I can understand that!

He now gets to be an "elf" and help with Santa's tree. I hope he can enjoy the special role of being "in the know" without spoiling it for the others. :)

Here is my big boy two Christmases ago. We found him asleep in front of Santa's tree in the morning with a very convincing story that he had seen Santa. <3

Feel free to comment with your opinion. I'm a big girl now, and I can take it. :)

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Blog Post About My Hair

Have you ever experienced insomnia? I do, fairly regularly, usually preceding that special visitor us ladies get each month. Like right now, it's 1:56 AM. I went to bed at 10:10 PM. I believe I slept a bit at first, but next thing I knew I was looking at the clock and it was eleven something...and I've been awake ever since. This is night two of this, so you can imagine my disappointment at not being able to sleep. I keep experiencing these giant, deep, soul trembling yawns...yet sleep eludes me. What I experience during these episodes is something I call "crazy mind". I mean, it jumps all over the place. I have about 20 things going through it simultaneously, one of which is ALWAYS a song. I try to clear my mind. I try to focus on one thing. I try praying.

But this post is about my hair. One of the things that has been OBSESSIVELY going through my mind while lying in bed tonight is the fact that the back of my hair just at the base of my head is too long. And now it's driving me nuts. I don't think I can stop thinking about it until I get it fixed. But I just had my hair cut a week ago! And I really don't want to call the salon. I am certain that by now I have earned the reputation at the salon as the girl who just can't be pleased. This hair has been through quite the transformation over the last 6 months. So let me just tell you the story of my hair.

First of all, I hate my hair. It really requires a lot of effort to look decent. I used to be quite "low maintenance", as my hubby puts it. As for my hair, it usually ended up in a ponytail and I was quite comfortable with that. But then I cut it shorter. It looked pretty cute in an a-line, but I would have to straighten it to keep it from being puffy with one rogue wave. Now I am going to fast forward to post-childnumberfour, Ollie. Actually, it was during his pregnancy. My hair turned curly in the back underneath. Well, I liked the idea of the curls, but my hair just became a lot of work, because no matter what, I had to either curl or straighten my hair for it to look good. Then, one day I went in to get my hair cut and the girl who was doing my hair had gotten a perm. She had short hair and it looked really cute. I had been planning, dreaming, and scheming about growing my hair longer again and getting a wavy perm in hopes of returning to low-maintenance girl and not having to curl or straighten. But my hair grows extremely slow and how many times had I given up on growing because I just couldn't stand it at that in-between stage? So, I decided to get a perm. And so the perm saga began. And a mullet I just can't seem to get rid of.

The first perm was great. But it fell out in less than two weeks. The cut, shorter layers on top than I had ever had. (Still trying to grow out those layers while cutting the back shorter and shorter. I have determined, without a doubt, that good or bad, I prefer my hair shorter in the back than the front.) I was leaving on vacation and needed it fixed, pronto! So, a different girl re-permed my hair in the wee hours of the morning. That turned out so much worse than the first one. Terrible! But I had to go on vacation and that is when I learned to use my curling iron. When we got home, I got another perm (with girl number 3), which turned out well. (Except that it was only the top and by that time the bottom had lost it's curl as well, but I didn't have the guts to speak up about it.) But she cut the top even shorter! AAAAHHH! The mullet was becoming more pronounced. I went back and had it cut again in the back. I learned that I must always use the curling iron to make it look good. I get to the point that I feel it is safe to ask for another perm and request that we start working towards this goal of shorter back and longer front. Sort of a-line with stacked back, but still curly. Love my hair for two weeks. Realize the back needs to be shorter. Go back in. Improved, but still not short enough. For some reason, even though I think I know what I want and have been improving in my communication, I still can't seem to get across exactly what I am looking for! I have been in the salon more in the last 6 months than in the last 6 years, I am certain!

And I dread calling them in the morning. But if I don't, this tiny issue with my hair will take over my mind until I get it fixed. So, thank you for all of your compliments. I really do love my hair when I make it curly. But it's a lot of work. And I long to be low-maintenance girl once again!