Daddy writes:

The holiday season this year has been much like the rest of the year, very challenging. Penny has learned to crawl out of her crib and WILL NOT go to sleep when she’s told. Evie still seems to be anxious when it come to Christmas, which has significantly dampened the holiday spirit on more than one outing. To top it off, the stomach flu elf has paid us a visit (Eileen’s on deck now) and we’ve had one of the worst colds we can remember.

There has been quite a few very bright spots, which for me, has made this one of the best Christmas seasons ever. First of all, the girls are really into it this year. We got an advent calendar which magically dispenses chocolate drops each day. Both Evie and Penny sing Christmas carols, often together, which could be the cutest thing I’ve ever seen. While on the downtown train yesterday on our way to check out the decorations at Macy’s, they both broke into the chorus of Jingle Bells very loudly. The best thing by far has been watching Evie overcome her holiday fears. In the beginning of the month we all went to the tree lighting ceremony for Multnomah Village. It was so cute. They even had horse drawn carriage rides, which Penny was very excited about. But Evie clung to Eileen the entire time and couldn’t wait to go home, even after we ran into her best friends from school. We had a similar problem when we all went to a “Christmas tree village”. Then as the month progressed she started to overcome it all. She went caroling with her classmates around town and really got into it. She enjoyed visiting Macy’s which was a bustling hive of activity. And I took her on the Polar Express. Mt. Hood Railway every year dresses up one of their trains and becomes the Polar Express. This was a birthday gift to her from Grandpa M, it was what she wanted. Eileen and I were very skeptical this would actually happen. Evie’s always had a love/hate relationship with trains. She seemed very excited the week leading up to it but the moment we parked the car in front of the train station she flipped out and just wanted to go home. We talked a little about it and she went through these “rules” of hers, such as; “there can be no snow on the tracks, and “there’s going to be a lot of other kids”. After about ten minutes of this she got up her courage and the rest of the day was wonderful. She even sat on Santa’s lap for a photo, which I truly thought would never happen. So it’s really been an amazing season. Oh, I almost forgot, I was fortunate enough to participate in a holiday variety show at Mississippi Studios with my ukulele group. The event was called “Queer Quistmas”. It was a lot of fun.

It’s now Christmas Eve and we’re hoping for a fun, tantrum free celebration. That’s really all we want from Santa. I have so many wonderful memories of Christmas from my childhood. I desperately want my girls to have the same. I want Christmas to forever be magical and warm and fuzzy for them.

We miss our friends and family terribly this time of year. It’s been hard meeting people and making new friends here. It’s slowly happening though. I wish you could all be here with us. To quote my dear friend Hans, “My Christmas Wish to all of you is simply to enjoy everything that this very special Season has to offer. The lights, the music, the decorations, the food, the nip in the air, the wonderful sense of peace”. Merry Christmas!