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Countdown to the Holidays – Mommy Style

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Day One – Go up into the attic to gather all your holiday heirloom goodies. Discover mouse poo and spend the rest of the day finding humane mouse traps and having your skin crawl.

Day Two – Nothing brings out compassion and love in family like a well-organized family photo session. Bribe your children with unreasonable amounts of sugar to get that picture-perfect photo that will make every neighbor green with envy.

Day Three – Toddler opens advent calendar door first thing in the morning and preschooler claims to never ever speak to you again because it was her turn to open the small paper door and what kind of parent forgets whose turn it is to open the door on day three. #ThisMom

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The LOOK… I wonder where she learned it?

Day Four – Vacuum pine needles. Move elf.

Day Five – Break out the kitchenaid and make some delicious homemade sugar cookies while covering every inch of your kitchen with flour, sugar, blood, sweat and tears.

Day Six – Classics are best! Totally hype up the amazingness of Claymation to your children, get all cozy on the couch in xmas Pjs, and while watching the small clay figurines awkwardly move realize that Donner is really sexiest and Santa is kind of you know what…

Day Seven – Vacuum pine needles. Move elf. Again!

Day Eight – Bring your child to a local toy store (gotta support the smalls shops) to pick out a present for the Angel tree. Bask in the glory of your parenting genius as you impart the reason for the season to your offspring. Watch as your toddler throws a class A tantrum in front of your friends and neighbors at the LOCAL shop because they are not getting or keeping a toy.

Day Nine – Have a in depth conversation with your five-year-old about a) mall Santas and why there is one at every mall but there is only ONE  “real” Santa b) how can reindeer fly c) how Santa fits down the chimney d) why Santa is not bringing us a baby bunny for Christmas or a baby brother.

Day Ten -Vacuum pine needles, move forsaken elf as kids come downstairs.

Day Eleven – Give up on showing your children holiday movies and open a bottle of wine and watch Home Alone, Elf and Family Stone, in that exact order. What is better than a good dose of nostalgia, a good laugh, followed by a good cry?

Day Twelve – Have three people cut you off while attempting to park at the mall.

Day Thirteen – Santa pics are the BEST! The more crying the better. Note to self to save some money for their therapy sessions later.

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You better watch out, you better not cry…

Day Fourteen – Speaking of pics shouldn’t you be mailing out your holiday card? Forgo the professional pic and decide to embrace your surly ways and send one of the outtakes. Take that picture-perfect families!

Day Fifteen – You are totally winning this holiday thing! And then you realize you completely forgot tonight was your first grader’s holiday performance and they are staring as Joseph. I mean Jesus did come from the Virgin Mary – Joseph was just a side kick, right? #Parentfail

Day Sixteen – Vacuum pine needles.

Day Seventeen – Find pine needles in baby’s diaper.

Day Eighteen – Google – are pine needles toxic and what happens if your infant ingests pine needles.

Day Nineteen – Wrap presents and put them under the tree.

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Our FIRST Xmas card as parents. I think it “screams” this is what REAL life looks like with a 3 week old.

Day Twenty – Vacuum pine needles. The elf hasn’t moved in 8 days.

Day Twenty-One – Buy stamps to FINALLY mail those holiday cards. Soak in the JOY and pure love that exudes from a United States Postal office during the Holidays

Day Twenty-Two – Surprise! Come downstairs to find your precious toddler has Unwrapped all the presents under the tree!

Day Twenty-Three – Make sure that first aid kit is well stocked. You try making homemade latkes without an oil burn and box grater scrape. The Trader Joes latkes are delicious in a pinch – just sayin.

Day Twenty-Four – You are almost there… home stretch. Now all you must do is bake, cook, wrap, bake, drink wine, decorate, assembly toys, bake, prep, vacuum pine needles, STILL assemble toys that apparently have 18,785 steps written in 13 languages, drink more wine…

Day Twenty-Five – Thank goodness that Elf can go back to the North Pole!

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The ELF happy Dance!

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