In the past, Christmas for my three year old has been this random morning where he gets to open a bunch of boxes that turn out to be filled with toys. Random toys are always welcome but there didn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to it. And my kid wasn’t demanding enough to enquire why he didn’t get presents everyday.

This year though I feel he’s now old enough to have a slightly more meaningful Christmas. (Not a lot more meaningful, just a little. He is after all 3.) So we set up his Little People nativity and as we played with the figures, I told him an (extremely) abridged version of the Christmas story. He listened, and he answered my questions that I asked to make sure he understood. (He hasn’t quite got to the point where he can ask questions when he’s confused.)

When we were done, I asked one more time, “Now whose birthday is it?”

“Baby E-uh,” he said, and he then proceeded to bust out into the Birthday Song unprompted and without help. It was perhaps the cutest thing he’s done to date.

True, if I played you the video I later made of his encore performance, you probably wouldn’t know what he was singing without captions. But let’s face it, only a few months ago even poorly articulated songs were out of his grasp.

He’s come a long way since we played with this nativity set last year. Remembering and being grateful for how far we’ve all come this year are (for me at least) the true meanings of Christmas.

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