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It's Christmas Time Babyyyyy!!!

Remember growing up as a kid and couldn't wait to wake up on Christmas morning to run in the living room to see what Santa Claus brought you? Well multiply that feeling by 5 or maybe say 6 because I was just as excited as the kids. Being my first year of creating this wonderful feeling for my kids, I wanted to make sure that they got at least almost everything on their list and then some. I remember growing up and my mom asking me and my siblings what we wanted for Christmas. Making a list and waking up to find everything we asked for under the tree was the best. We even had things we didn't even knew existed. So it was just as right for me to go all out for my babies.

I started my Christmas shopping at the beginning of November. Hiding things in my closet and locking things up in one of the storage closets. The agency also had gifts that donors donated. My kids had almost everything that I listed on their list. There was so much stuff that I literally could not walk in my walk-in closet. But it's going to be a very Merry Christmas for my babies. They deserve it after the year they have had. This is their 1st year in foster care and they deserve to know that foster care is not as bad as people make it out to be. I brought everyone Christmas stockings to hang in the living room and got a real tree. I believe this was also the 1st time the kids had and even seen a real live Christmas tree. We decorated the tree and the living room window. Family time was so much fun. The kids talked about leaving Santa milk and cookies, waking up to see what Santa brought them, and being out of school for 2 weeks to play. So since they know that Santa brings toys to the children that are good, I had to use this to my advantage.

It seemed as the closer we got to Christmas the boys decided to test the theory of if parents really talk to Santa to tell about their behaviors. Everyday it was a new behavior that cause them to be told "I'm calling Santa and telling him all about what you are doing that's not good." I had to make sure I kept to my threat. So one night I called the toll free number that comes out every year and let them hear me leave a message for Santa. Then about 2 days later while they were at school, I typed a letter to them from Santa. Placed it in an envelope with a stamp addressed to the both of them. When they came home from school, I had my oldest boy check the mailbox. He gave me the mail and I was like "this letter is for you and your brother." At this time one was in pre-k and the other in kindergarten so they weren't reading yet. We sat down at the kitchen table and I read the letter to them. The letter told them that he knew all about what they were doing at home and school, how if their mom (me) had to leave him another message about their behavior that they won't get whatever that special toy they were asking for for Christmas, and that he will call me in a few days to check in on their behaviors. When I tell you they both were crying and so scared that they weren't getting anything for Christmas they decided to change their behaviors. Mom - 1 Kids - 0.

Now its Christmas Eve, I'm up cooking my Christmas dinner, the kids running around, and husband at that time was taking a nap since he has to help put toys together later that night. Right before the kids headed to bed they left Santa a note, plate of oreo cookies (Santa request), and a small glass of milk. Off to bed they all went. Around midnight we started pulling everything out the closet and down to the 1st floor. We put together kitchen sets, grilling sets, groceries stores, wrapped gifts, stuffed Christmas stockings, and then arranged all 5 kids toys into their very own sections. Finally off to bed about 3am. We didn't get to sleep to long because having 5 kids 8 years old and younger meant you definitely up early on Christmas Day. The kids came running down the stairs knocking on our door asking was it time to get up. I had everyone go brush their teeth and wash their face. We then proceed downstairs to the 1st floor in a single file line. The kids ran B line to the living room. I showed everyone their section and they started throwing wrapping paper and boxes all over the place. This was just the beginning to their day. We then had to travel to the other side of town to my parents house to exchange gifts and then to other family members' homes to just finish enjoying the day.

Even after a long day of playing with toys, eating, and visiting family, we still made sure that the kids understood the importance of Christmas. The kids had been attending church with us so it made it easy to talk with the about the birth of Jesus. I can look back on this day and definitely say that seeing the smiles on my babies faces made my heart melt. I'm still glad that God led me here and I look forward to many more holidays where we can share and create more memories. After such a long day I was ready for bed and preparing myself for the remainder of their Christmas break. But overall, like Ice Cube said "today was a good day."

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