...to New Jersey.
Dear Santa –
It’s Mercer. And currently, I’m hiding in my crib, under a blanket, pretending to sleep, while writing you this note on Mom’s IPAD (thanks for the idea, E-trade baby!). This thing is SLICK. Do you know that I can stream Big Bird whenever I want? WHENEVER I WANT!!!! I’m going to make that fat turkey dance for me all night long. This could be dangerous.
But I digress.
I saw Mom writing out all these thank you cards, emails and Facebook posts for all the wonderful things that we received during Christmas. And, because I’m at a stage where I mimic EVERYTHING she does, I thought I’d write one too.
Santa – I think you’re great. You are the bringer of all joy. And I couldn’t be more grateful for how you spoiled me this holiday season. I got to fly to NJ to see my family. I love flying…and so do Mom and Dad. When we are on the plane, they get these little bottles of “water” and mix them in their juice and after that they spend the whole flight laughing and sleeping…and I do the exact same thing, when I'm not squirming and squawking.
When I got to NJ – my Grandparents’ house looked like Santa Land! I loved all of the lights and ornaments that Pop Pop and Grandmom decorated with, especially the ones on their Christmas tree. My absolute favorite ornament was a 1960’s era white mustang convertible. I kept “finding” it on the tree, pointing to it and saying, “CAR, CAR, CAR”!! That was Mom’s ornament from when she was a teenager (one of her dream cars) and I think I’m going to make it my ornament for years to come.
|Mermz Checking out the Ornaments|
In poking through Mom's computer, among a history of some major online shopping, I found a draft blog post that Mom wrote this about her parents tree that seemed nice to include here (she’s so wordy…):
Because we travel during the holidays, Mark and I don’t really decorate the house. I put a festive holiday table cloth down on the kitchen table with Santa placemats and that’s about it. We did start a chocolate Advent calendar to help countdown the days to Christmas. But I don’t think Mercer truly understood what Santa-land was all about until he walked into my parents’ house on the 22nd.
To be fair, my parents have been looking forward to spoiling grandchildren with Christmas for a LONG time. And it showed. The outside of the house was twinkling with thousands multicolored lights, making sure it was bright enough to catch Santa’s eye. The Christmas tree was perfect, it’s always perfect. It's charming; a collection of ornaments from many Christmases past adorn the branches – each holding a special memory. Over the past 33 years of my life, we’ve had many trees, yet in my mind – they always look the same, and interestingly, when I do decorate my own tree, it turns out looking just like my parents’ tree.
|"Are you buying presents for an orphanage?" - John Pactua - Dec 2011|
Yadda, yadda, yadda. Why is she freakin’ sentimental about everything? Back to me…and Christmas.
|Cheesin' in his Christmas Jammies|
|All dressed up in his skull tie|
And on Christmas – there were presents. Presents, Presents and more Presents. Someone had to remind me what presents actually were and what I was supposed to do with them; i.e., play with the toy inside the box and not just the box and the paper. I’ll confess, I was a little overwhelmed by all the attention. Mom opened one box for me that had a dump truck in it and I demanded that I play with that immediately. I was so content playing with the truck that I let Mom open up the other million boxes. That looked like hard work, and I was content playing with my toy and enjoying my vacation.
|Mermz - More interested in McQueen than having his photo taken|
Santa, I know what I asked for from you was extensive, but, I never thought you’d actually bring it all (minus one small request that I mention at the end of this post). Mom says that I’m spoiled. I totally laughed at her when she said that. I’ve seen pictures of the Christmases that Mom had growing up…she forgets quite easily how spoiled she was and still is…right…Cashmere sweater? I am so thankful for everything I’ve received – all of my Santas were so very good to me. Once the UPS man delivered by gifts back to NJ, I got busy playing with them and then I found a placemat in a drawer and have played with that for the last 4 days. It's a really nice placemat!
The best part of the NJ trip was spending time with Mom’s Village. I am adored, as I should be, by just about everyone (I think Misty the dog is jealous of me). I got to read books with Great Great Uncle Vince and Aunt Drea. I got to snuggle with Pop Pop, even when I wasn’t feeling well. I entertained everyone with my sheer amazement of everything. I loved all the hugs and kisses that I got from my family – I was smothered in them the whole time.
|Pop Pop and I snuggling when I was sick|
|Great Great Uncle Vince teaching me about "Things that Go"|
|4 "red heads", 4 generations|
|Cutest Family EVER|
|Aunt Stinky, Uncle Cookie and Mermz (sorry Dre - this is the only pic I had of the three of you)|
|Cousin Bill, Aunt Drea, Daddy and Mermz|
|Great Uncle Andy - The builder of the coolest piggy bank EVER and Mermz|
|Our family lost in the presents|
Which leads me to my final point….
Santa, just for your records, next year, let’s avoid bringing me a stomach virus. Experiencing this phenom for the first time was less than magical and I will try to avoid it at all costs. The look on Mom’s face when I puked down her shirt was priceless and hysterical, but the taste of old gnocchi in my mouth, afterward, may have made me vomit again. Gross. Ewwww…. Yucky. (Gnocchi's are Yummy. Vomit is Yucky)
Santa - you rock and I look forward to our date next year. I hear you may be sending an elf my way to do reconnaissance on me for you during the month of December. All I have to say to that is...BRING IT ON...CHALLENGE ACCEPTED.
Next year..I'm getting the one thing you forgot...my pet reindeer.
Notes from Jen:
*Stay tuned for the report of our Florida trip (December Post 3 of 3).**Big thanks to everyone for the merriest Christmas yet. Much love to you all of you...from US.