Before we fly north for the next few weeks, I'll just share some of the holiday spirit the kids have experienced this week.
First there was Grace's Christmas party, and one of the "room parents" in her class made an Olaf (from Frozen) pinata which was a very big hit. Along with my chocolate chip cookies (maybe it was just Grace eating them!). It was a very happy and "sweet" celebration. Grace is a happy girl at school. And, actually, we got her first "official" report card yesterday. It was detailed and positive, and we are so happy to hear how she is progressing physically, creatively, and cognitively. But the bit we were most proud to read was that Grace has a lot of empathy and caring for other children, particularly if they are sick or injured or sad. Kindness is the most important thing, so that was wonderful to read.
Then today was the celebration of Santa Lucia at Nordic school for Noah's class - a Scandinavian tradition that we see here every year. I know I am completely biased, but sometimes I think Noah is so cute that my heart hurts a little! The video is a little long (including bits from 3 of their 4 songs) but I just couldn't cut it down! Yesterday they also had a "fancy" Christmas lunch and Jule Man (Santa Claus) came to visit. Noah couldn't quite decide if that was the Tanzanian Jule Man or the Svenska (Swedish) Jule Man. Either way, he was pretty happy about it.
I love Christmas traditions and all the wonders of Christmas that do not include just the receiving of gifts. I hope that as my kids age they will continue to love these special celebrations and appreciate that giving to others is the true blessing of the season. Noah told me today that it will be very nice for Jesus on Christmas when it is his birthday. Indeed.
Safe travels to anyone flying the holiday friendly skies like we will be. I hope to check in before the new year!
p.s. Aya got over her jet-lag just in time to learn how to stand up in her crib. Yeah. So that's happening throughout the night now. If I get more than 3 consecutive hours of sleep in the next 3 weeks, it will be a Christmas miracle indeed! Santa, please!