Letter to Camille: Forty-One Months

Forty-One MonthsHello sweet sleeping girl! It is Christmas Eve as I write this – can you believe it? The last image I had of you tonight was watching you pull your quilt up over your head so you wouldn’t see Santa. Several weeks ago you announced that you did not like Santa. Not one bit. I kept reminding you about all the presents he brings, but you’d already solved that problem. “Santa can just mail my presents!” you declared. When I informed you that it didn’t work that way, you decided you didn’t want any presents.


Then later, you said it was ok if Santa didn’t come, because Boo would get you presents. I think you are absolutely spoiled rotten!

I believe some of this anti-Santa-ism may stem from the talks we’ve had recently about stranger danger. We’ve tried to impress upon you the importance of not going anywhere with strangers, and I think you’ve taken that message and morphed it into ALL STRANGERS ARE SCARY! Now, for example, when we get on an elevator with strangers, you clamp your eyes shut tightly. It’s as if you’ve decided – if I can’t see them, then they can’t see me! If a stranger comes up to you in the grocery store to remark about your pretty, sparkly red shoes, you’ll slap your hand over your eyes as quick as a wink, completely shutting them out. Thankfully people don’t seem to take offense, and we’re all mostly amused.

Oh sweetheart, I am sorry your letter is so late this month. It’s not because I had trouble finding things about which to write, but because we’ve been too busy to write! One thing I love about December is that we get to spend time with family for the holidays. But unfortunately, our dearest ones are not also our nearest ones, and that has meant a lot of travel. Don’t misunderstand, I love travel and I think you’ve got the travel bug too. But I also like to spread the travel out a little more!

Cousins by the Christmas TreeThe first weekend in December, we flew up to Boston to visit Auntie, Uncle Dave and Jones. We had quite a time getting there (delays in D.C., cancellations, last minute taxi ride across D.C. to catch a plane at another airport, etc.) and you were a trooper through it all. But once we finally arrived we had a wonderful visit.

Snowgirl and her DaddyAuntie was nice enough to summon snow for us, so we had a very good time stomping around in the white stuff and tossing snowballs. The suburbs around Boston are so picturesque, and were made even more perfect with a layer of snow over the whole landscape. Everywhere you turned, the view looked like the perfect Christmas card.

Beautiful Mill with SnowIt was fun watching you and Jones play together. Your favorite thing to do is wrestle, or as we say here in Georgia, “wrassle.” This basically involves you laying on the floor yelling, “Get me, Jones!” And then Jones does a belly flop on top of you and you wrestle. It’s really cute, and we’d better enjoy it now because he’s growing so quickly he’ll soon be too big for wrassling! 

Loving on JonesBoo's CrewThe next weekend we were back in Savannah and got to enjoy the Holly Days festival. You loved the “ice” skating rink on Broughton Street (no ice, but an ice-like surface) and watching the old-school Frosty movie in one of the historic theaters downtown. We had a good laugh at the end of the movie when Santa brought Frosty back to life. You looked at your Daddy and said, in an exasperated tone, “See! I told you Santa was nice!” As if we had said anything to the contrary!

Since that day, you’ve become smitten with Frosty and with snowmen in general. When the Frosty song comes on the radio you squeal and then start doing the “Frosty dance.”

Grand LoveWell, lucky for you, Nana and Granddaddy also summoned some snow the next weekend when we went to Tennessee to celebrate Christmas with them.

Snowman Stare-downWe spent all of Saturday morning in the snow building snowmen and watching you sled for the first time! Here’s some video with highlights of our snowy adventures in Boston and Tennessee:

You opened presents at Nana and Granddaddy’s house, and were ecstatic to get a new baby doll that laughs and coos and a bucket of dinosaurs. What a fun mix! I love this picture I snapped of you on the floor, cuddling with Baby Allee while the Brachiosaurus gave her a kiss on the cheek.

Dolls and DinosAnother big event this month was your debut in Savannah’s Christmas parade. Your dance class marches in the parade every year, and last year I remember standing in a square with you, watching all the little girls go by. I remember thinking, “That could be Camille one day!”

Being in the parade was a much more difficult undertaking than I expected. First of all, it was really cold that night and your parade uniform wasn’t nearly warm enough. Secondly, we had to line up for the parade an hour before it began. That was a looooong hour, standing on the asphalt, freezing cold, just waiting. And waiting. You were pretty miserable and I kept waffling about what to do. One part of me wanted to just call it quits, go find your Daddy and Boo along the parade route and watch like we did last year. But another part of me wondered if this was an important lesson
about being part of a team and having to stick it out even when it wasn’t easy. Finally, when I didn’t think we could stand it another minute, we started marching. Once we got moving your mood improved dramatically and you marched with a big smile on your face.

For about two blocks.

Your Daddy and Boo had stationed themselves close to the beginning of the parade route. At first, when we saw them, I thought you were going to march on by. But at the last minute, you dropped the baton of the girl next to you and collapsed into your Daddy’s arms in tears. When I asked you if you wanted to march some more, the answer was a definite NO. I decided a compromise was in order – you’d endured an hour of waiting in the cold and marched a couple of blocks with your team. Now your reward would be watching the rest of the parade with Daddy, Boo and me. Here’s a video of your brief parade appearance:

A Very Brief Christmas Parade Appearance from Ginger on Vimeo.

Camille Grace, it has been so great to enjoy this holiday season with you. I have always loved, loved, loved Christmas, but watching you love it too just magnifies the magic. Sleep well tonight my angel, because you’ve been a very good girl this year. Are those reindeer hooves I hear on the roof?

I love you sweetheart. Merry Christmas!

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