On Christmas Eve my sister and I would get to sleep together if we wanted. When we were little we could fit in one bed and as we got bigger, we'd put sleeping bags on the floor.
I always woke up before she did and then I'd sit and stare at her, trying to will her awake. Sometimes I'd even take my thumb and pull her eyelid open.
And when she was finally awake, We'd go wake our parents up. I loved the feeling of creeping downstairs and knowing that it would look different than the night before. The tree would have presents underneath with wrapping paper I'd never seen before. The cookies we'd set out on the mantle for Santa were gone, replaced only by crumbs and a thank-you note. Long after we no longer believed in Santa Claus, that magic was still there.
My mom would put a Christmas record on and we'd open presents together sitting around the tree.
It is unbelievable to me that now my kids creek downstairs and I sit on the floor with my coffee, watching them open presents wrapped in paper they've never seen before. That I have a husband who puts music on to listen to while we open presents. Being a grown-up at Christmas time sure is funny.
I still feel like that little girl on the left sometimes. And I wonder what my kids will feel like as they grow up through these traditions.
I love this time of year. I really do. Maybe I'll pry Tad's eyelid open one week from tomorrow if I happen to wake before the kids.... Then again, prolly not.