It’s finally December!

Seth and I have been busy preparing for what is expected to be our most exciting Christmas with the boys yet. With a basically-two-year old and a full-fledged threenager, Santa has been a hot topic around here and you better believe Seth’s been taking full advantage of Santa’s ‘existence’ each night at bedtime. (“Remember, guys. Santa is watching, so you better be good boys and go to sleep.”) Before I had kids, I literally had nothing holiday-ey in my apartment – for any holiday. Having the kids though has brought the holidays to life. They really are magical. I have found myself becoming more and more obsessed with the holiday aesthetic and spirit each year. I envision the tree, the decorations and I shop for gifts with a vision of how I see and imagine Christmas morning will look and feel. It’s like this ongoing special event I just can’t get enough of.

However, when it comes to holiday visions and aesthetic and shopping for the right gifts, being a boy mom is sort of a holiday curse because – well, I’ve never been a boy and I’ve also never really understood them, at any age – at all. It’s fun to shop for them and don’t get me wrong I LOVE doing so, but I’m not an expert in ‘boy’ and so I find myself often feeling uncomfortably inadequate, gaudily over-the-top and irrationally moody (story of my life), especially since gift shopping and Christmas morning are husband and wife ‘team’ projects. I can sum up how our holiday teamwork goes in one example. Twenty minutes ago I sent Seth this link of a gift idea I was instantly borderline obsessed with, he sent back this link. See what I mean?

Inadequate, gaudily over-the-top and I’m instantly moody.

But in an attempt to make the most out of my boy-mom Christmas shopping taste, here are some of my holiday favorites and must-buys.

  1. This Droid Inventor Kit looks amazing. I mean, who doesn’t want to design their own droid let alone train them to go through obstacles and pretend the force is with them? Even I want that and I’m a grown woman. My kids are too young and I just know I’d be heartbroken the second they busted it to pieces, but if yours aren’t and they’re as obsessed with robots as Matty, you need this! Or maybe this.
  2. The other day I was looking through the Fat Brain Toys catalog (yes, I still get catalogs in the mail – bah!) and Matty walked in. Out of all the amazing things, there was only one thing that – as we flipped through -made him mumble under his breath, “Mom, I think Santa’s going to bring me that.” And surprisingly it was the one item that made me ear mark a page. These Riverstones, albeit simple, will definitely be under our tree this year. They’re out of stock but you can also find them on Amazon.
  3. The boys are finally starting to play together – sometimes it sure sounds a lot like Matty bossing Abbott around but they call it playing so that’s what I’ll go with. Anything that lends itself to pretend play is a big hit. So it’s probably no surprise I love this Weber outdoor grill.   Or this design your own super hero kit. Or this wildly expensive plush canoe. Or even that diner set up there.
  4. Our boys don’t play with phones or tablets yet but I love this, plus it gives you something to do with your old phones!
  5. When I think about being a kid, I think about all of the cool spots I could hide and all of the special places only I could go. And even now when the boys are crawling under chairs and in between masses of things in the closets and underneath the hanging clothes, it reminds me of the magic that childhood is. This year we want to get the boys tents or a pop-up playhouse and space is a big thing our home right now so this and this rocket are two of my favorites. This camper is also pretty ultimate.
  6. Lastly, books. BOOKS AND MORE BOOKS. A friend of mine got me hooked on Usborne and I have to say if you’re looking for great reading material and you have the chance to ‘go’ to a party, do it. Check out the big books, their shine-a-light book series and their masked fairytales. We are obsessed and I’m not even getting paid to say that! We also LOVE Dan the Taxi Man and Pete the Cat (because it’s allllll goooood) so I’ll probably be getting bunches of those. P.S. If you have any good books, I want to know about them!

Also, guys, remember when it used to snow in the Midwest and be actually cold in the winter? That was neat.