12 months ago we were in a house in the middle of The Netherlands with the whole of Mrs Stace's family and I was struggling to spend more then a few minutes not lying down whilst loaded up on paracetamol and enjoying it as much as possible. The little dude had no idea what was going on and got bored with present opening very quickly. And it was still great!
Fast forward a year and we were busy putting together an Ikea kids kitchen at 11pm on Christmas Eve (so that the little guy did not see it before hand) and trying to wrap it. And it ewasn't even our present to him! It was from my parents.
We had put a glass of port out for Santa and a carrot for the reindeer. The little guy must think we are little weird - a few weeks ago we were putting our shoes in the living room and singing to them for Sint Klaas to come and leave something for him and now we were making a big deal out of setting the table for someone who wasn't there :)
Come the morning we set the presents under the tree (we couldn't do it at night as our robot vacuum cleaner would have damaged them :p) and waited for him to wake up. His face when we came downstairs and he saw the presents was an absolute picture! And his the surprise on his face when he saw the carrot was half eaten :)
He's still a bit young for the presents. He gets what they are now (and dived straight into opening a big one when we sat by the tree) but he opened the first one and just wanted to play with it and watch Gruffalo, rather then open the rest. But we did some more before taking a break for breakfast, and he was over the moon with all of them (especially his coffee machine). I got some earrings from Mrs Stace, and the complete Indiana Jones BluRay set (which is on right now :) ) and some glitter nail polish from the little guy (among other things).
We got dressed - me in my new Christmas Dress:
(And it is a beautiful in person as in the picture!)
And then then, with my parents on the phone, we opened the hallway door and, shock and surprise, Santa had left another present there! It must have been too big to fit in the living room :)
He knew exactly what to do with this present and spent 5 minutes unwrapping it whilst my parents watched 1600km away. His face lit up when he realised what it was and didn't stop playing with it for the next hour! I can't wait for him to get up later this morning and start again!
After his nap (which he didn't want, but sorely needed!) we went to Mrs Stace's parents for Christmas dinner with her family. Everyone dressed up and had a great meal and a great time. I taught my niece something on the piano which she practiced until even her grandmother had had enough :)
I was worried that with my childhood Christmas' I was putting too much on myself to recreate for the little guy and it would never live up to my memories and expectations. But, in fact, it was great. I have a grin ear to ear just thinking about the day.