This Christmas was rough. It rivals the one a few years ago when HomemadeDady was gone during the days leading up to Christmas and BigM had just been diagnosed with Autism. The only difference? This year we were all together and BigM is no longer considered needing interventions at school. So why was it so hard?
My depression hit hard this season. We were away from family, had little room to put out many decorations, are still adjusting to non-military pay and both HD and I had to work during what used to be family time. We did manage to get a tree up and I made sure that all the boys had a present under it. We didn’t cook a special Christmas dinner and we didn’t have a big Christmas Eve buffet. I hated it. I felt like a failure.
HD and I got each boy a toy, a new toothbrush and toothpaste and a joint gift of new coloring books and markers. For Christmas Eve they each got a new pair of pajama’s and a new movie to watch that night. I also popped up popcorn for them to share and they and I had a big family night. HD had to work that night but I made sure to send him lost of pictures. The boys did receive presents from their Nanny and my Aunt. BigM also had something from both of his teachers. Grandpa sent them gift cards for Amazon and they got toys, art supplies and snacks from that.
For their individual toys from HD and I, BigM got the Clue boardgame, LittleM got a set of Octonaut Vegimal figurines and PirateM got Playskool Star Wars heroes Han Solo and Tauntaun. They each got a homemade fleece tie blanket from my Aunt which has quickly become a favorite blanket for all of them. Their Nanny got them puzzles, candy, a movie, playdough and a big bus! From Grandpa they got Robot Turtles game, Tengu Robot set, Alex Toys craft sets, Playskool Star Wars Heroes Stormtrooper and speeder, National Geographic books both easy reader and angry bird themed animal fact books and freeze dried fruit, animal crackers and even a new bed mattress. Overall they had a pretty good Christmas
I made the money from Grandpa stretch by shopping through Amazon Warehouse Deals when possible. We saved decent amounts of money to get the same thing in original packaging that maybe was dented in the shipping process.
Gifts, decorations and food isn’t want made this Christmas one of the better ones in the end. We were still able to all be together for a couple hours on Christmas Eve and HD made it home before the kids woke up on Christmas Day. He may have slept in between them opening each present but we were a family. We got to teach BigM how to play clue and got lots of pictures of blue butterflies from LittleM. PirateM loved the tissue paper and packing boxes.