Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Toddlers and Christmas Trees

Year one my daughter was only a month old for Christmas, so she just looked cute and everyone oohed and awed.

Year two was much more fun.  Our, then, three year old niece and her played to the point of exhaustion even though she was only crawling, not walking.

This year, well this year is different.  She's walking.  She's into everything.  We have a five month old son who seems to like the twinkly lights but can't destroy anything yet. 

We bought a tree a few days ago.  She loved it.  A tree inside the house, who wouldn't right?  I put her to bed and put on the (6 strands) of lights.  We were going to finish decorating the next day.  She was so excited when it was all lit up the next morning.  She began doing laps around it.  To give a better picture, there is a wall with a window adjacent to another living room wall on the back side.  So laps isn't an easy task.  But it was new and exciting so it was to be expected i guess. 

I came home to find the bottom branches broken and most of my effort stringing the lights "altered."  According to my wife she found her stretched out like superman mid flight in the lower branches.  She was too concerned with untangling her to snap off a photo.  Later in the day she found heard a squeal as my daughter had driven her car up into the lower half of the tree.  We aren't talking Matchbox either.  This is one of those push/ride cars that aren't rated for arboreal "off-roading."

So we "doctored" the tree and sorta shoved the lights back in place.  I broke out the ornaments.  She was super happy that I let her pick out the ones I was to hang up next.  We'd gotten through about a dozen of the ceramic (I know, what the hell was I thinking?) ones my mother-in-law gave us last year.  She then decided I needed to have better access to them so she lifts the tray off the couch to bring it closer (to her).  We had a few casualties to say the least.

Once the rest of the non breakables were up I was going to have her put the star on the tree.  That's when the game of how fast can we take the ornaments off the tree began. 

Needless to say it was bed time and my wife threatened to put a gate around our creation. 

I got a message from my wife that today (with the Christmas lights off) the tree seems to have lost it's novelty.  Not sure if it's the lack of twinkle or if three days in she's no longer interested.  Either is a distinct possibility.  I'm betting that she's waiting for my arrival home so she can really see the sparks fly. 

Merry Christmas Kid.


  1. Huh. See, I don't have kids -- well, my stepsons are 15 and 19 -- but I have cats. Those freeloading felines LOVE the Christmas tree. Two years ago our first cat was a kitten and I would sometimes walk in the door to see her eye-level in the tree, just staring at me.

    Now she's too big to get up to the top levels, but she will sometimes still climb up to the lower ones and just chill.

    I think that Christmas trees are much more entertaining with either kids or cats. Period. :)

  2. My current cat doesn't seem to care much about the tree...he just drinks the water.

    When I was a kid though, we had a three legged cat (no, she didn't start out that way but that's a story for another time) who would go apesh!t with the tree. Like yours, she would be eye level in the tree and as you passed by she'd spring out at you. Quite comical...and startling if you weren't expecting it.

    Definitely both types of little creatures make them more entertaining.

  3. Christmas always hovers right on the line between child-like whimsy and all that is highly fragile. We get our kids all hyped up and then won't let them touch anything.

    My favorite is watching an adult model train enthusiast try to protect their creation from the very folks it was designed to enthrall. "Don't touch this very tactile thing I have constructed right at your level!"

  4. It is really funny when you think about how we've child proofed a home only to throw all of those worries out the window for one evening of celebratory decorating and be tortured by sheer panic the remainder of the holidays.