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Katy England Katy England
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Holiday dry-runs

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Having young kids during the holiday season is like getting to play a dry-run of a complicated obstacle course, where nothing is counted against you. You are allowed to see the layout of the field, be it how to get the Christmas Tree, how far in advance should I buy decorations, how many decorations do I actually need, and are costumes going to be involved? Then you celebrate the holiday and the kids barely notice, because they're too young to give a hoot.

This is actually the best time. You can't possibly disappoint them, because they still have no idea what's going on. So if you're still learning the ropes, those holidays when they are between 0 and 2 are epic.

Easter was a perfect example. I made a tactical error with candy. I mean, they're not even 2 years old yet, so candy is kind of iffy. It's not even that I'm anti-sugar, I'm more anti-choking-on-a-jellybean. And I truly could have gotten away with the chocolate rabbits and one bag of dark chocolate eggs (from Specialty Sweets, man-oh-man). I could have skipped the Hershey Kisses (but not the Cadbury eggs - I'm not a monster).

It was the same for Christmas. The kids were much more interested in trying to eat the wrapping paper than what was wrapped up. This probably won't be the case next winter. But it did help me realize how much in advance I need to do shopping, knitting (especially if I need to start over because I forgot how to cast off), plan for dinner and get new tires for the car (hint, do that now).

But this all amounts to a holiday dress rehearsal. We all go through the motions, but no one really cares if you screw something up. Now I own three Easter baskets. Three Christmas stockings. Three Oh crap, I still have to buy them bags for trick or treat. 

But they will care - if not this year then the next year. And though I have no plans on raising entitled little brats, I also don't want to be the mom who killed the Easter bunny or dress up like the Grinch. 

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