The children were awake before sunrise asking, "Is it time? Can we decorate it now?" And I groggily responded, "No ... not yet. The tree is still sleeping. It is very, very tired...."
For as long as they've been able, we've recruited the children's help decorating our tree. And there has been a distinct improvement in their ability. We've evolved from the tree being placed on a table, completely out of their reach for fear that they'd knock it down and eat it, to buying an abundance of small, unbreakable ornaments...
... that the children would painstakingly hang on one branch (circa 2008).
This year, the children were taking turns to climb up a step stool to carefully place each of their ornaments.
Including, for the first time in their existence, some of the fragile glass ornaments Charlie and I acquired in our pre-children years.
What with learning to read and losing teeth, it's obvious our children are growing older everyday. But today, when I could see how carefully they placed the ornaments and spaced each one so expertly - it struck me just how fast they really are growing up.
Which makes these fleeting moments all the more precious.
(There are GLASS ORNAMENTS on our tree. GLASS!!!)