How things have changed in the year between Christmases. While Nate was clearly more interested in Christmas last year compared to his first year, he was quite happy to wait till Christmas morning to open his presents. Not so this year.
We brought our tree home on the evening of the 3rd. Our old Christmas tradition involved us walking up to the Lion's tree lot at Oak and 25th, hoisting the tree on our shoulders and walking it the twenty-two odd blocks home. We'd sing carols along the way, to the amusement of the people that we passed. This being Vancouver, we usually did this in the rain. Luckily for us, a tree lot has taken up residence at 12th and Main, making for a much shorter walk home.
The first present under the tree was for Nate. It came in the mail from our friends Lori, Paul and Sosi, who moved from Vancouver to Charlottetown PE last year. From the moment it arrived, Nate could not wait to open it. He'd start the day by saying:
"Can I open my present today dad?"
As the days passed and it got closer and closer to Christmas, the pile under the tree grew larger and larger, and Nate's morning greeting to me evolved into:
"Hey dad! It's Christmas today! Can I open my present?"
My attempts to explain to him that Christmas was still some time away didn't seem to be making any impact and the morning greeting soon became:
"I'm going to open my presents today because it's Christmas!"
More a statement than a question.
When Christmas morning finally came, I thought that he'd be so wound up that his head would pop off or something! Imagine my surprise when I wasn't greeted by the usual morning declaration of his intent to free his presents from their gift-wrap prisons. Instead he was quite subdued and seemed in no hurry to open his presents at all.
After unwrapping his first gift, a Hot wheels monster truck, he announced that he was going to play with it right there and then. Never mind that other gifts under the tree. We actually had to talk him into putting it aside and continue with the unwrapping of gifts. Even then, he would stop after he'd unwrapped a gift, and pick out a gift for either Patty or myself and bring it over to us to unwrap.
Perhaps all that waiting finally wore him out. In any case, I think it all worked out for the best. We had a very relaxing morning unwrapping gifts and got to spend the rest of our Christmas in the company of a few good friends.
I can only imagine what next Christmas will be like.