Saturday, January 3, 2009

My birthday and our first Christmas

Approaching Christmas of 2008, my friends and I had been discussing how Christmas was so much more fun when we were kids--leaving out the cookies and milk for Santa, not being able to fall asleep until 4 o'clock in the morning because we were so excited, not being able to stand the anticipation of waiting at the top of the stairs when you know that Santa has left the best present EVER just down there, ripping open each box with more excitement than the last in anticipation of this present ALSO being what you always wanted, playing all day with your new toys...
Well, you get the drift. Of course, most of us having this discussion are the ones who do not have children, because those with kids say Christmas is just as magical for them as it is for the kids. BUT, for the rest of gets kinda' blah when you grow up.
To top off that discussion, a friend celebrating her 2nd Christmas as a wife told me that Christmas this year would be like sticking a pin in that prized balloon you got at the shoe store-a complete let down. She said that the first grown up Christmas (in our case, the first Christmas being married and out on your own) wouldn't be much fun because of things like the husband doesn't know what to do with a stocking (if he even knows that it's his job to stuff it!), that they never buy presents as good as our parents, and that you have to do all the planning yourself.
So...since I was already sort of feeling disenchanted with Christmas this year, that really wasn't what I needed to hear. However, I decided to trudge on and try to make this first Christmas magical--and it was!
My birthday is 5 days before Christmas, so if I'm not in the Christmas spirit by then, that usually gets the ball rolling for me. This year was no different, it did the trick! I was instructed to dress for a nice evening out and be ready to leave at 4 o'clock--no clue where we were going or what we were doing! Anthony surprised me with a wonderful evening out! I had no idea, but he'd gotten in touch with my dear friend, Brandi, and invited both she and her boyfriend to join us for my birthday surprise. We had a wonderful dinner at Maggiano's followed by a trip to the Fabulous Fox Theater to see The Nutcracker and a stop at the Varsity for dessert. It was an absolutely wonderful night filled with fun surprises, great food, an excellent ballet, tons of laughs, superb friends, and an amazing husband! Anthony plans some sort of birthday surprise every year, and he definitely topped himself this time--I can't wait to see what he comes up with next!
So, Anthony's careful and thoughtful planning got the Christmas ball rolling for us, and despite a slight melt down at the last minute because I wanted to get it all done and was afraid I couldn't, we had a wonderful first Christmas together as husband and wife!
Anthony and I are very fortunate to have our families living close by, so we were able to spend Christmas Eve with Anthony's family and spend Christmas afternoon with mine. However, in between those two events, we were also able to work in a little time to start our own tradition of Christmas morning together in our home! No, we didn't stay up until 4am with excitement, and no, we weren't up at the crack of dawn waiting to see what Santa brought, but we still had a great time.
Much too late on Christmas Eve, I realized that I hadn't done anything about stocking hangers and refused to let Anthony nail them into the mantle. So, what's that old saying, "necessity is the mother of invention?" Yep, we placed a chair in front of the fireplace and hung our stockings on the back of the chair.

So, on Christmas morning we opened our stockings together, and I was pleased that my friend was wrong--husbands do a GREAT job of stuffing a stocking! Bath goodies from Lush, gift cards to Sephora and Starbucks, DVD sets...he did great!

I think I did pretty good, too!

After that we sat down by the tree for an attempt at a "family" portrait (us with the cats), but they didn't think much of that idea.....

So, as much as I wasn't sure how this Christmas was going to turn out, it wound up being wonderful! I felt a bit like we were kids again while opening our gifts! Reading things like "to my wife, from your husband," or "for my husband, from your wife" on the gift tags didn't get old, and we tore into each package with anticipation of the next bit of fun. We have a Wii, and unbeknownst to each other, we each bought Wii games for the other. He gave me a Wii fit with a couple of different games to use on it, and I gave him the airplane controllers and a flying game and some other games.

So, all in all, once I got rid of my angst of thinking this Christmas wasn't going to be anything special and trying too hard to make it perfect, we wound up having a wonderful first Christmas as husband and wife. Yes, the fun of surprising each other with gifts was nice, and the fun of opening packages never gets old, but the best part was that we were together.


  1. Amen. I think married Christmas is great & I feel truly, deeply sorry for those who don't enjoy it. Of course, my husband is an excellent gift giver, too!

  2. Ahh! I didn't even know I had a comment! I've got to figure all this stuff out!