Christmas magic.

Everyone always says, "Christmas is so much more fun when you have kids." And you know what? They're totally right. Last year, C was a little too young to really understand the holidays. This year, though, she is a chatty and inquisitive two year old, and she is amazed by all things Christmas: lights, carols, Christmas trees, Santa...and his elves. She is particularly enchanted by one very special elf: Perry.

Perry the Elf, you ask? Yes. He is staying at our house, and magically moves to a new location overnight: a bookshelf, the window sill - and this morning, in a potted plant. This mysterious little elf means that the moment C wakes up in the morning, she runs into our room, and yells, "Mommy! Where is Perry?" She hands me my glasses and slippers (my own tiny blond butler! who knew?) and together we make our way downstairs to see where Perry has landed for the day. Though he doesn't move, and won't talk to C, he mysteriously knows whether she's been "good" or "bad," and he reports back to Santa every night. If C starts whining about something, as two year olds are apt to do, we gently remind her that Perry is listening, and maybe she should use her words like a big girl instead.

The two women who created The Elf on the Shelf (a mom and daughter team, as it happens) are geniuses.

Anyway, I have to say that I'm looking forward to this Christmas more than any that I can recollect. C's recent birthday reminded me just how quickly she's growing up, and seeing her little face light up as she explores the joys of the season (magic elves and all) is quite possibly the best gift a mom could ask for.


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