As inconvenient, messy, and high-maintenance as they are, real Christmas trees are cheaper, cooler and better than good fakes. Except silver tinsel trees from the fifties. Those rock.
Kids are great tree decorators. Even with the glass ornaments. Especially when they create vignettes, like the Star Wars scene and Toy Soldier corner.
And they have much more patience with glitter than their fathers.
Tree decorating is best done with wine, no matter what time of day it is.
Even the ones they've outgrown.
And naps are never overrated.
Activity advent calendars are a great idea until they become work for the mom.
And that kind of planning is always work.
Organic pastry flour makes terrible spritz cookies.
Whole milk and real butter are the only options.
And bacon. But not for the cookies.
Perfect cookies are not worth the disappointment of boys who didn't get to operate the cookie press.
Another batch of cookies will always be worth it.
Glitter is forever.
Homemade presents are always better than store-bought. Made by a child is best of all.
Even with glitter.
It's ten times more satisfying to find the perfect gift for someone else than to receive one.
And ridiculously satisfying to wrap it beautifully.
A first tooth lost while eating a candy cane on the last day of school before Christmas break is the best kind.
Tooth fairies know this and save two-dollar bills for those occasions.
Elves on the Shelves are not cute bringers of swag on the days leading up to the big haul. They're evil little spies and should have the dogs set on them for their skulking, destructive ways.
Because seriously? They're elves. Minions. Tricksters and troublemakers all.
And who in their right mind has time to plan their shennanigans?
ABC Family is a great default channel in December. At least until 8pm.
Donnor was mean. The other Reindeer were bullies. And I always though Hermey the wanna-be dentist pulled the Abominable Snowman's teeth to make him gentle. But no, toothless bumble was kept in chains and paraded through the north pole like a madman on display.
Sometimes it's hard to keep the magic.
But if we don't, how can we keep it alive for anyone else?
Because the key to Christmas is magic.