Happy Holidays

I've tried twice already to write a holiday blog post and failed miserably. Tonight I sat down to write my nephew's wife an email reply. When I had finished I realized it was the post I've been trying to write.

Hi Bree,

Thank you for the nice note, as always.

Hannah still believes in Santa - but I think this is probably the last year. She asked me the other day, "Mom, do you believe?" I picked up a copy of "The Santa Clause" for her to watch this year. I think it'll get her through this Christmas, at least. Next year, 5th grade, I think we're doomed -- too many nay-sayers. She's asked for a video camera (our idea) and game and the Clone Wars movie, which we're going to have put on her iPod and we've purchased a cord that connects the iPod to your TV so you watch it both places. (Andy keeping us abreast of all technological advances...).

Nicky actually spoke with Santa two times (would not sit on his lap, but stood next to him!). He wants a BIG present. What ends up inside the BIG present is at Santa's discretion which caused Andy and I more problems than you'd think. After many hours searching the internet and trying to make a decision I ended up at ToysRus buying several smaller things to fit in one box. Cars movie stuff and a pretend toaster and microwave with food. He still loves that stuff and the crazy micro actual has a working turn table, light and buttons. Best $10 I've ever spent!

What are Katie and Jack getting this year? Is anyone flying out there?

We're leaving this weekend for Tahoe/Donnor. Already the snow is falling there and I know we're going to have a great time. We'll pack Max's box up and take him with us just like we did for Thanksgiving. This is definitely a tough time of year without Max here. For a new tradition this Christmas we'll be putting personal notes in Max's stocking on Christmas Eve. Our standing tradition of Santa leaving a nutcracker for each of the kids will continue. We found a nutcracker dressed as an army-guy for Max.

As I'm writing this, I looked up to see a group photo flash on the big computer of the cookie baking we did several years ago! How funny - because I was going to mention that we missed you this weekend for this years bake-off. Between Gramma, Jenee and I we baked a crap-load of cookies. I have about 10 big tupperwares full. It was amazing what we churned out in four hours. (Double oven!) The kids even had a blast dipping pretzels in chocolate and sprinkling them with goodies. Good day all around, I just wish more of us could've been together. These cookies will be the perfect gift-from-the-heart as always to many friends.

You probably are in the loop that we opted out of the name-draw this year. My heart just wasn't in it. I didn't want to go shopping. I didn't want to receive any presents. I told everyone that a present you could buy me for $50 isn't going to make a difference in my life. But spending time together would. In looking back at Max's short life with us, experiences are what makes memories and fill our hearts.

Our Christmas card this year...


Anonymous said...

Your Xmas card is awesome....what a wonderful family, three beautiful children---three bright, beautiful lights!

I am always touched to read your journal--so real and hearfelt. I'm thinking of Max all the time. It's interesting how deeply touched I am by your son, someone I have never met. His sweet spirit just always shone through. I will remember him forever.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the post. I have been wondering how you guys have been doing this holiday season. As always I think about you guys all the time. Have a great time in Tahoe.

PS The differences in the west and east coast always interested me - one to add to the list - you guys call it a name-swap we call it a grab - as usual yours makes more sense!!

Vickie said...

I have to agree with Shirley. This might be the most inspiring Christmas card I've ever seen.

Living Life to the Max in Texas!

Anonymous said...

I too believe your card is awesome....and very heartfelt. Keeping your traditions is so wise...and the new one for Max is not only heartfelt but so important to keep his memory and his forever 7 life always a part of your family...if not it would mean that his life wasn't important...and that is so untrue. His short '7 years' touched so many lives...and strangers.Beautiful! I was happy to see you Melissa yesterday...even though it was short..but the 'hug' felt good. Merry Christmas to a very special family. xo Linny

Anonymous said...

A very touching post, and a beautiful card. May I suggest for Hannah, this year or next, a copy of Berkeley Breathed's Red Ranger Came Calling. It's how I found out that part of me, even at this late date, still believes.



Anonymous said...

I've thought for a couple of days what to write. All I can come up with is a thank you for last Christmas. It will always be a treasured memory for me. Truly my most memorable, favorite, and special Christmas...because of you and sweet Max. My thoughts and prayers continue to be with you. xolisa

Deqlan said...

WHAT A STUNNING CHRISTMAS CARD, ITS REALLY BEAUTIFUL AND SO MEANINGFUL!Max is always in our thoughts. We continue to check in on you all and continue the prayers for you each day, God Bless, have a wonderful Christmas and all the best for 2009 Love Mark Samm Deqlan and Logan

Anonymous said...


Your card is beautiful, inspiring, and a reminder of what it's all about.

Thank you-

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