Holiday Time is Catch-up Time

foam christmas tree craft

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When I decided to send the Bit to preschool, it was a difficult but really calculated decision. I knew that if I was going to continue working, if I ever wanted to make more of a name for myself or write a book ever again, I was going to need more time to work.

I knew, too, that she was going to need more enrichment, stimulation and socialization than I could provide with playdates and trips to the library. If she were still home all the time I would have to give her education a lot more of my focus. We’d probably be doing some Montessori homeschool type things, and I’m sure she’d still be brilliant, but I don’t know if either of us would be as happy.

She’s advanced so much in the year plus she’s been in school, and my career has gone some good places, too, with a new book at the publisher’s and more great opportunities coming to this blog all the time.

Mama Love

Still, I think we both enjoy the time we have together during school breaks, if in part only because it reminds us that we prefer our work and school routine and have it really good most of the time.

One thing I do really miss when the Bit isn’t home is getting together with other mamas and their kids, so I was really glad to get the chance to host a raucous playdate with some old friends and their kiddos before Christmas.

Mamas and a bunch of sweet girls play in the Bit’s room.

We’ve all changed a lot in the couple of years we’ve known each other. Several of us went back to work (or in my case, started working more); one went back for a school year and stopped again. A handful have had another child, while those of us who haven’t seem to be pretty firmly in the one and done category. There’s been a divorce, remarriage and one marriage for the first time.

Some of these women are among the first moms I met when I started taking the Bit out of the house. They are all women whose very presence lifts me up and makes me feel better about this strange, hard journey of parenting we’re all on.

Kid Crafts

Of course there was lots of playing, tears shed over lack of sharing, lots of food and craziness and fun.

And because it was my house, there had to be a craft. Which I got few good pictures of while it was happening, of course. (And the flash is dead on my camera and I don’t have any batteries, so my after-the-fact picture is pretty bad, too.)

foam christmas tree craft
The Bit and bear observe a friend who is very serious about her sticker selection.

I bought these foam Christmas tree decorating kits at Target for $5 (which got me 20 trees and an assortment of stickers, mostly letters). We added some stickers from our vast supply to make things a little more interesting.

The kids got to choose how to decorate and whether they wanted to put their names on them.

Not every kid participated — which means we can bring this craft back next year, yeah! — but those who did seemed to have a lot of fun.

foam christmas tree craft
Some foam trees that got left behind, and the Bit’s, which is the dark green one.

The Bit’s is covered with flowers and turned out really pretty, if not exactly seasonal.

I think we dirtied every small plate and bowl in the house (I made shells & cheese & peas to share, and there were lots of other treats, too) but it was so much fun and I just love seeing them all so much its worth it to have to clean the house. Twice.

Did you get to see any people you don’t get enough of lately? I’d love to hear about it!

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