Of course, focusing on a blog post instead of shopping, or making pie crust sure doesn't help but somehow it makes me feel better. I wanted to talk about this advent calendar. It is a very special present we received 5 years ago from a really close friend of the family. I love getting surprised by the fun note that came with it which we taped in the back. It's a good thing we did because somehow we always forget. I was pregnant with my youngest when we received this and she could only be referred to as "Peanut" but I forgot about that. I like that this note reminds me. Thank you Jo-Ann for what will surely become a heirloom.
The truth is, as much as we loved it, we would often forget to use it or kept struggling with last minute ideas to fill it. We were so used to the cardboard ones with the little chocolates inside that it was hard to get into the habit of this design. We decided that this year would be different. Marc pulled it out of our basement early enough and after the holidays are done, I plan on storing it ceremoniously on the top shelf of our pantry right next to the other treasures I save for the holidays. Before December first, we bought little bags of good chocolates. For a low cost there was enough to fill this calendar with leftovers for the next year! Except, I should have known better. After the girls were sent to bed, Marc opened the bags to sample... Doom. We managed to save the Kinder-eggs and saved the girls a few good Lindt chocolates but the rest went in our bellies. The shame.
The loot included: Rainbow sugar canes, 2 Hello Kitty mini-figures, a craft kit to make 2 felt snowmen, 2 glass snowmen ornaments containing styrofoam snow, jiggly/rubbery bears that blink and shine when hit, squishy snowmen stickers, candy rings, fun erasers, fancy tapes for crafts or to decorate, 2 Lego mini-figures, gold coins and other chocolates.
I found the mini Lego and Hello Kitty figures at the local pharmacy of all places. They were between $3.00 to 4.00 each and were considered a splurge (especially when bought in pairs). I could have gone without and I don't think I'll do that each year and the girls know it but it was fun! Homemade items would have been just as nice and little love notes too. The girls would have loved it but my nerves, not so much. Did I over do it? Maybe but so far the reactions were worth it. It's amazing how an eraser or one sticker can brighten a morning and start a conversation. I made sure to alternate the trinkets with chocolates. The result, a fun box full of surprises with no more last minute stresses to fill them.
Most of this will be forgotten but a few will be remembered. Like these little snowmen the girls had to put together while Marc and I slept in. What a sweet deal that was! When we came down that morning, our little Évangéline was proud to show us what they discovered and created. Geneviève her older sister helped her figure what to do with it and as much as I would have loved to be there to see it, I like that this was their little moment. It was worth eating all the chocolates for that! ;)
Just like the merry expression on this little guy's face, I'm wishing you all a good time (with a good side of crazy), at getting ready for the big day. It's time for me to jump on my list of things to do so if I'm not back here soon, I wish you all a Merry Christmas and a Healthy, Happy New Year! :)