We're home, at last and finally, after a longer-than-intended pit stop in PA trying to replaced a blown tire on the minivan.
No, not THAT tire. That tire was successfully installed and is working just fine. Another tire. There was an incident in Valley Forge involving my in-laws and a wrong turn and conflicting GPS directions and a curb collision while we were still in NYC. So while at least this incident did not involve any more Foyer Tires, the hassle and unexpected expense of it all means 2016 -- along with everything else that was good and pure -- has gone and destroyed the whimsy and weirdness of #TIREWATCH, because neither of us want to hear another word about tires again.
2016, man. Please wrap this shit up already.
Our house no longer looks like this, but the aftermath of all of this, plus somehow three times as many Amazon boxes piled up in hallways and corners. And now suitcases and even more gifts from grandparents and friends.
Noah came home from school last Friday, sat me down and demanded to know the truth about Santa. Jason and I agreed that we'd continue to play along this year, as that seemed to be what he wanted -- the doubts were visible and rising -- but we'd no longer flat-out deny or lie if pressed.
And oh, Noah pressed. And pressed. He told me to whisper it, so his brothers wouldn't hear.
So I told him.
There were some tears, lot and lots of hugs, and a short but palpable mourning period for both of us as I watched him straighten his shoulders and let this rite of childhood roll off behind him forever. I asked if he could agree to keep the game going for his brothers, and he enthusiastically agreed. He spoke loudly and glowingly about Santa to them later, pausing to occasionally give me a wink or a thumbs up. That night I pulled Elf from his hiding spot and handed him to Noah, who handled him almost reverently.
You can be in charge of him now, if you want.
(Oh please be in charge of him oh please oh please I'm so done with that thing.)
He's loving it, actually. Reality suits him. We're conspiring together, and he's happy to be in on the secret.
Either way, there was still plenty of Christmas magic to go around on Sunday morning.
(The almighty screen bow down before ur god now)
(A dinosaur flitcher!)
(A for-real actual computer because kids today.)
(A box o' hats for your most hammy child!)
(And of course, a Red Ryder carbine-action 200-shot range model air rifle more mothereffing Minecraft Legos.)
All in all, a very successful Christmas/birthday week for anyone who is not a tire. Now I need to go wash things and flatten boxes and vacuum up all the needles the tree dropped while we were gone. Have a happy and safe New Years Eve! It's almost 2017! We can do this, provided there's wine.