Every night as I put her to bed, Tori asks me, “Is Santa coming tonight?”
For quite a few nights in a row, I was able to tell her that yes, he was. Tori, you see, had not one but three visits from Santa Claus.
First he came here, to Indiana. The next night, he dropped off presents at my mom’s house. And the night after that, he squeezed down my in-laws’ chimney to leave her a stack there.
Apparently, Tori was a very good girl this year.
Each morning discovery prompted the same unbridled joy. She’d jump up and down, laugh giddily and proceed to unwrap every. single. present. Hers, mine, Brian’s, her grandparents’…even her cousins were kind enough to let her open some of theirs.
Clothes were unfolded. Toys were instantaneously ripped open. Books were flipped through. Only socks (of which she got four pairs, one for each time I’d had to call Santa and tell him she was naughty) got a pouty lip.
It was ridiculously fun. For everyone.
But, like all good things, the endless Santa visits had to end. Worse still, Tori had to leave her beloved grandparents and return home.
Tori was not pleased.
There were tears and tantrums. Defiant scowls and trembling lips. Hair pulled out and vodka tossed back (on the part of her parents, anyway).
Thankfully, there were also new toys. Lots and lots of new toys. Not to mention countless hours of playing, puzzle building and snuggling.
It was, all in all, a very good Christmas.
So when Tori asks me, “is it still Christmastime, Mommy?” I can’t quite bear to say no. After all, the tree’s still up. The pretty lights still shine outside. And the peace and happiness our extended Christmas break brought us hasn’t quite disappeared yet.
I think this is one Christmas we’ll hang onto for a little while longer.