I couldn't decide if I wanted to write tonight. The girls went to bed early, Matt is sick so he is passed out on cold medicine and I have a quiet house to myself for the second night in a row. Last night I took it as an opportunity to finally start wrapping presents. I like to wait and wrap gifts when I know I have uninterrupted time. I turn on a cheesy holiday movie, pull all the gifts I've been collecting the past month out and set to wrapping. Last night was the perfect time for this. I put on Sleepless in Seattle (for someone reason it feels like a holiday movie to me), had a cup of tea and a couple hours later the tree was full of gifts.
My favorite is when the girls got up in the morning and started snooping and shaking gifts. I like creating the anticipation. For them these next 6 days before Christmas will seem so long. I remember that as a kid, the days leading up to Christmas took for-ev-er. Now, it just flies by.
The week has been weird. I can't seem to stop thinking about the community in Newtown. I didn't like dropping the girls off at school on Monday. It was harder for me than leaving them on their first days of school. It didn't seem safe after what has happened. I was slightly reassured as I saw the police officer and principle standing outside the door...but for how long will that last? I know millions of kids went to school and came home safe on Friday, but how do you know when something like this will happen again? I can't help but be scared about it. I feel helpless about keeping my kids safe in this way. I worry a lot when it comes to my girls. I worry about them getting abducted, so we teach them to not talk to strangers. I worry about them getting hit by a car, so we teach them to look both ways. I worry about bullies at school, so we teach them to stand up for themselves. But, how do you teach a kid to protect themselves from something like this? You can't. There is nothing to say or do. That's where my helpless feeling comes in. You just have to have faith that they are safe when you leave them at school and in our safe little community I usually do. That feeling shattered a little bit for me on Friday. I feel like I'm distracted during my days while they are at school and it's not until I'm back in the school to pick them up that I feel calm. This morning I sat in Layla's class like I always do on Wednesday mornings when I volunteer and looked at this classroom of 5 and 6 year olds and couldn't imagine the terror those kids felt. It broke my heart. Without getting political here, things do need to change. We can't just wait around for it to happen again. I don't know what the right answer is and that again brings the helpless feeling. Things do need to change...whether its gun laws, mental health help or looking into the violence our kids are bombarded with through media, video games and movies...anything is worth it to keep our babies safe. I also wonder what can we do at the school level? What can we do to keep them safe while all the other stuff gets figured out. No one knows. All I know is I'm very glad there are only two more days of school until break. I'm looking forward to being with my girls and family and snuggling them in close for two full weeks.
I truly didn't mean to go on about that again...it's just been on my mind so much this week.
One thing that totally made me smile this week? Today I got my sisters holiday "card" Now, she has had a tough year...infections, surgeries, hospitals and on and on. She could have written the most depressing holiday card ever. You know the kind I'm talking about...the ones you get where people document everything from the past year and they tend to be on the negative side. Instead she put the most creative and festive spin on her year. She also went the "green" route and put it on her blog and email instead of actual cards and when I saw it, it totally made my day. You can check it out here. It's her version of the 12 days of Christmas...the "10 Strange Things" was my favorite. Love her rock star attitude that keeps shining through.
I think that is it. These next days leading up to the holiday will be full. Holiday programs, class parties, birthdays, baking and lots of Christmas traditions with my family. I will be spending more time with my family and less time on the computer. So with that...
And to All a Good Night.