The 2016 Inductees to the Higa Christmas Tree

We didn’t bump “Back in Black” or “Return of the Mack” this afternoon but we probably should have. The Holiday Monger showed up to erect our Christmas tree.

123Setting up our Christmas tree is one of those things that isn’t terribly difficulty but is horribly tedious. I have to take the tree and the ornaments down from their hibernation nests in the garage. I have to stand on a questionable stool, avoid the clothes lines, Corolla, and other items to do it. I have to hope that there aren’t any critters in the boxes or bins because that means even more work for me as Lynnette and Madison scream for me to kill it from a safe distance or the height of the couch. Now, setting up our Christmas tree also happens to be one of those things that’s so easy to let slide until next weekend (or the weekend after) because we’ve got so much going on. The Holiday Monger, however, made an appearance to make sure that didn’t happen.

Lynnette is the house creative designer for all things holidays. I brought all the stuff upstairs and placed it in the living room, then went back to laundry task (already in progress). I sternly told Madison to stay out of Lynnette’s way while she was piecing together the tree because the last thing anyone ever wants to be is the person standing between the Holiday Monger and some symbol of a holiday. Don’t be that guy, Jack.

So I watched the twins in the play area while Lynnette erected the tree. Eventually Madison was allowed to help put the ornaments on after she signed a liability waiver and a terms of use agreement. I heard the usual comments on Madison’s lack of spacing between ornaments. “But they’re twins, mom!” Madison shot back once. I looked over and saw two ornaments for Cole and Avery. Madison had placed them side-by-side. I guess I can see what she was going for, but still.

As is the tradition in our home, Lynnette, Madison, and I picked up new ornaments for our tree. Here are the new additions:

6Madison’s been going through a Harry Potter phase, you might recall. When we looked at Hallmark yesterday she wasn’t interested in any of the ornaments. She turned down Scooby-Doo, a slew of Disney characters, and random cute animals. She somehow remembered seeing Harry Potter ornaments at Barnes and Noble. We went there today and sure enough, Madison found the Hermione ornament she had been looking for. She’s also said that she’s adding Harry Potter-related things – like a wand – to her Christmas wishlist. You know what’s on my wishlist? That she would hurry up and finish reading the second book so we can watch the second movie. We aren’t allowing her to watch any of the movies without first finishing the novel version. She agreed to this and man, did it backfire. She must have watched the first movie something like 6 times before I stepped in. I can’t really explain to you how this is any different from my “Law and Order” marathons, but it just is, OK?

5Lynnette picked up the ornament featuring three young penguins. Last year, one of them was reading a book to the other two. This year all three are playing on what appears to be a merry-go-round made of ice. If I had to guess, Madison is the penguin in the foreground, totally not watching Cole and Avery – gleefully forgetting her responsibility of keeping the twins safe because she’s having too much of a good time. I didn’t watch Lynnette pick her ornament. When I asked her what she got, I was hoping for some kind of pop culture icon or something of that ilk. This makes more sense, though. Lynnette hasn’t seen the inside of a movie theater since I don’t even know when, and she no longer watches TV steadily. She’s a part-time Netflix watcher at best. She’s a full-time awesome mom, even when she’s picking a Christmas ornament.

4Look, before you say anything, I know, alright? Yes, there is an incredibly high likelihood that Tony Romo here joins DeMarcus Ware and Johan Santana in the Ornaments Who Aren’t Allowed on the Christmas Tree Because We No Longer Play for Phil’s Favorite Teams Club. That doesn’t matter. As I scanned the Hallmark shelves for the sports ornaments I was pretty certain I’d go another year without a Met or Cowboys to bring home. I saw Big Ben, Gronk, and Madison Bumgarner before my eyes fell upon Tony. There was some ambivalence, obviously, but I was morally obligated to purchase it. Earlier this month Tony set a standard for loyalty and respect that I could not help but be ruled by. THAT’S MY QUARTERBACK!

7I can’t wait until the twins can participate in this tradition. It’ll be some awesome when one or both of them decide upon utterly hideous decorations and all I can say is “Okay…” I mean, I’ll still be able to find the humor in that, but what about the Holiday Monger? Will veto preposterous ornament choices? I bet not. It’s close, but Lynnette loves her children more than she loves her holidays.

I thought Cole and Avery would be amazed by the lights on the Christmas tree, but neither of them gave the tree anything more than a passing glance. But maybe that’s because they’re playing possum behind the play area fence. I have no doubt that if both were allowed to explore the space around the tree, Cole would knock it down so that Avery could eat it.

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