If you belong to my mom's side of the family, you just started singing the song from Fiddler on the Roof when you saw the post title.
Keith and I are really excited about starting holiday traditions with Bert, even if he doesn't have a clue what's going on this year. You've already seen the advent calendar I made with the mom's night group, but we have two other ones we are counting down with this year as well. The first came from my Mom-mom, who has given my brother and I advent calendars for as long as I can remember. This is an upgrade though because instead of just a picture behind each little door, now there's chocolate!
Then I stepped out to get the mail the other day to find a big envelope containing another calendar from my ever-thoughtful friend Claudia. It's based on an Eric Carle book and pops up into Santa and a tree and each door has a little paper ornament to hang on the tree. How clever is that? I think if we are careful with it, we can use it year after year.
My Mom-mom gets the gold star for getting us started on traditions. When we saw her over the Thanksgiving weekend, she also had a Mary Engelbreit cookies-for-Santa plate for us. Mary Engelbreit has been one of my (and Mom-mom's) favorite illustrators for a long time so I'm really excited about this. I can't wait until Bert is old enough to put out a glass of milk and fill this plate with cookies for Santa. And don't forget a carrot for the reindeer and of course, cheese for Santa Mouse!
Last but not least is a tradition that is brand-new to Keith and I, and certainly to Bert: Elf on the Shelf. Mom-mom brought the book and elf set for Bert and the elf is now on his first perch, the newel post at the bottom of the steps.
The book says we are supposed to give him a name. And what else would we name him but Herbie, Santa's friendly Head Elf that wrote my brother and I letters at Christmastime for years?
So even if Bert is just kind of along for the ride this year, Keith and I are feeling more excited about the holidays than we have for years. This year is like a dress rehearsal for when Bert is a more engaged audience!