So what have I been doing? Well a bit here and there with the kids, sorting out and wrapping all the Christmas presents to make sure I hadn't accidently missed anyone - which I had, so good thing I'm on the ball with the wrapping and what not.
We decided to get the Christmas tree out this year but with a two and a half year old I feel it is still fraught with danger. We didn't get it out last year because I was worried he would pull it over on himself but I really don't know if this year will be much different. We didn't even put decorations on the lower branches because, seriously, that's just asking for trouble. Regardless, he still keeps gravitating back to it like a moth to a flame - just looking for trouble. My kids and the kids from next door decorated it. It actually looks like they all just stood back and threw stuff at it but it's all good. That's what Christmas is about, sharing time with family and friends. It shouldn't have to be perfect, we don't live in a department store.
My husband doesn't go with that theory, he likes everything to be evenly spaced and colour co-ordinated - he doesn't actually do it, he just likes it to be that way. Well, I'm sorry but life is too short for that crap. He walked into the room to inspect the carnage.... I mean decorations, took a deep breath and said "So, you're happy with that?" to which I replied "Yep" and he said "You're happy with the spacing of everything and how it all looks?" again I go with "Yep" and he walks away shaking his head.
I have a friend who used to work as a visual merchandiser at a department store and his tree always looked worthy of a Christmas catalogue with a perfectly dressed (and clean) little family sitting beneath it. In fact the first year he was married, his wife and he set up their Christmas tree and she told me she had never known there were so many rules involved in tree decorating and she was certainly not aware that all the presents had to be colour co-ordinated as well! I might add that this was when their family was smaller, just the two of them. They have recently had a small, demanding, noisy little person come to live with them and I am keen to see if Christmas tree perfection is still on the top of their list of priorities.
Christmas decorations have been out now in full force since July (oh, OK I am exaggerating - but it's only a matter of time before that happens) but I refuse to put anything up in the house until the first of December so that we are at least on the downhill slide to the season of celebration and it feels more Christmassy. So we have a select few pieces out this year and depending on how successful this is we may put more out next year when grabby hands are not so, well, grabby.
Have you set your tree up yet? Are the kids involved in the process or are you like my friend and will only except Christmas tree perfection? I might also add in parting that it wasn't until I had children of my own that I understood why people put those ugly little handmade things on the tree and now that I have my own, they seem beautiful to me. Weird how being a parent changes your perspective so much.
Have you set up the decorations yet? How was your experience? Let me know, I promise I won't judge either way.... well only if you're really anal about it all and everything has to be perfect and then I may judge just a little.