Truman and I get into Christmas in a big way. We always put up the outside lights the day after Thanksgiving; I climb the ladder while Truman detangles the lights from below. "That looks great, Mommy! I like how high up you're getting them!" he says. We stand back together, Clark Griswold style, and then turn on the lights. They're not so impressive really, but we still oooh and ahhh over them.
Having the lights up makes Christmastime feel official. We can begin working our way together through favorite Christmas movies. We can fill the house with Christmas carols and the scents of pine and pumpkin spice. And we can start making handmade cards for our members of the family who are scattered across the country.
I came down the stairs this morning to find that Truman had written Santa a letter. I love that my boy is a believer. "Dear Santa," he begins, "I'm sorry I didn't send this to you. But there was so much going on that I forgot. I have been good, and so has everyone in my family. I made a big wishlist online, and I will read ten things from it." He goes on to list the highlights from his list, which range from biographies of Thomas Edison and Henry Ford, to a fart blaster megaphone. (Shhh! Uncle Paul gave him the fart blaster. Of course.)
Long after the Christmas presents have been forgotten, Truman and his siblings will remember their enthusiasm for preparing the house for Santa and other December visitors, and the time we spend together as a family during every winter break.