Christmas morning at my parents’ house has long been a sluggish affair. Sure, there were the days of yore when I would wake up early (like, 3 AM) out of excitement for what was under the tree, but as my brothers and I got older (not to mention my parents), Christmas gradually became a late-morning celebration. By the middle of the last decade, we had gotten to a point where my mother would make breakfast before any of us got around to opening presents.
Even as a (theoretical) adult, Jaclyn has never had the patience for this approach. She has often expressed frustration at the lethargy my family applies to Christmas morning, even going so far as to abandon any hope that we would ever begin opening gifts and going over to her dad’s house instead.
Then came Miles. And while his passion for Christmas manages to meet Jaclyn’s expectations, for the rest of us it’s been like a nuke dropped into the middle of what had been a family tradition borne of laziness and complacency.
Never was this struggle more obvious than this year, which saw Miles springing forth from bed at 6:30 (which, to be fair, isn’t that bad) eager to begin rooting out his gifts and frenetically liberating them from their paper constraints while my dad (still recovering from a recent illness) and Miles’s Uncle Ben not emerging from their respective rooms until around 11:00.
And yet, while his early morning enthusiasm certainly fits with Jaclyn’s expectations, his approach to actually opening his presents seems to be one of the traits he’s inherited from me. Miles methodically investigated every gift, quickly deducing that anything in PAW Patrol wrapping paper was both his (obviously) and from Santa. As he considered which package would be the next one he opened, he would say things like, “I’ll open this one next, because this is my Mario Kart track.” Each of these deductions would bear out precisely as he expected.
Of course, he wasn’t always sure what would be found inside the packages. He was surprised most often by clothing.
And while Santa wasn’t able to get everything Miles asked for to him in a timely fashion this year (thanks, Amazon…), he was overjoyed with the gifts, both expected and unexpected, that he did receive.
With all that excitement, and the early start, it was no surprised when we went into the bedroom to let Miles know it was dinner time and found him like this: