Christmas Calendar Monster

Growing up my family was always excited for December 1st: the first day of counting. Mom pulled out all the Christmas decorations right after Thanksgiving. You can be the house was already in the mood. The tree may or may not have been in place yet. I don’t remember. We did a real one back then so it may have been closer to Christmas. Who does that now? Do you? Someone must still be willing to strap those suckers to the roofs of their cars and cram them through the threshold to pose them in their final resting place. To be fair the fate of store bought trees had already been decided. You know, no roots and all. Might as well dress em up and make a good go of it.

We usually reserved a the corner next to the hearth for our live (dying) tree. Seems a bit cruel, really. Just to be real festive we’ll burn a few of your friends!

It was in this spirit that we started counting advent style. Our calendar was a large felt Christmas tree. Our greedy little hands fished out small felt ornaments to decorate the tree, one by one, day by day. As the tree grew more festive so did we and the excitement in the house did too. The daily job was envied and shared equally among the kids. When the job fell to me was mine I rushed home from school and as the youngest (and naturally the cutest/most manipulative) I finagled a few extra days away from my three gracious siblings.


My parents have kept that calender in excellent shape and the Grandkids now get to enjoy the felty green excitement of counting. The other day my mom and Anne were looking at all the ornaments. Anne had correctly identified the stars, gingerbred men, presents, globe ornaments and birds when they came across the following:

Grandma: What is this one?
Anne: (Very matter-of-factly) A monster. (Which is pronounced much more like the mou in mouse: “Mou-nster”)

If only I had realized sooner! The advent calendar has a rogue monster ornament. I think it belongs.

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