Secret Santa! Secret Santa! It's here! πŸŽ…

@DawnCloud It's Happening!!!!
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    It was a greuling day- I had to work (It's Saturday πŸ˜–) and I'm on call thru the night
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    But then this was waiting for me when I got home!
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    Simpsons reference: when Homer sees the add for a free trampoline, and he gets so excited he mispronounces, "tram-mam-poline! tram-bop-aline!" and runs out the door
    That was like me, but slurring "Secret Slantaa! Secret Santamabaa!"
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    Already??!! It's December 3rd!
    Well it couldn't have come at a more perfect time as a pick-me-up!
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    Check out this bounty!!!
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    At first I thought My Secret Santa wanted to stay anonymous. But then I rifled thru the box and it's the lovely @karlalucia ! Hello and Thank you!! 😌
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    Holy Crap there's twelve individually wrapped packages!
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    Instructions/non-instructions!
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    So what do I choose? I will one-day-at-a-time it people! There's ample time before Christmas (strategic timing, @karlalucia !) and I like to prolong the magical holiday spirit!
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    On top of which, the Add To Your List feature is perfect for this! (were you psychic about this update, @karlalucia ???) I'll update day by day!
    My apologies in advance to any followers who will feel annoyed by the long, drawn out, self-indulgent nature of this. I've been unfollowed for lesser things, tho so feel free. Away we go!
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    Day One
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    A hand-painted glass ornament from Pier 1! With penguin motif! Painted from the INSIDE???!! Insane!
    This is wonderful! Right up on the tree!
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    My 3 year old claimed the ornament box
    So glad I hung the ornament on the tree before she noticed. She's been on an "I want to hang things" phase. But she is 3, and the ornament is glass and that would mean shattered ornament on ground.
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    It's gonna be a great 12 days! Some packages seem book-like which excites me. I'm pretty sure one is a hat! This will be fuuun!
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    Day Two
    Another weekend day at work, happy to come home, sad that Monday just sends me back. But look what's waiting for me? My kid and Gift #2!!! As requested, the kid will be featured in this live listing process. So not only are you spreading joy to me, @karlalucia but my daughter gets so excited to open presents!
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    "It's Mittens! YAAAY!" - direct quote
    Per my request of cold weather accessories for cold Michigan winters! β„οΈβ˜ƒοΈβ„οΈβ˜ƒοΈ
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    And just in time, because it started snowing! This might be the first snow of the year that starts to collect on the ground. Warm and cozy!
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    Day 3
    I hope this live listing experience is showing everyone that getting @karlalucia as your Secret Santa is the best! If Li.st Secret Santa is sustainable for another year, I highly recommend rigging it to get her!
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    And away we go! Ramona is so excited to open package 3
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    A leather-bound blank book with my favorite Lord of the Rings quote!!!! πŸ˜ƒ
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    And lined! The best kind for me and my form of expression!! It is beautiful and even smells good (the leather!) Guys, I'm so overwhelmed 😊😊
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    Day 4
    Today is an extra special gift because.....(wait for it)....
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    Aside from the fun-ness of unwrapping, Ramona was excited with the contents!! Holiday Chessmen! Yum!
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    Day 5
    What makes a crabby 3 year old un-crab? Tell her it's time to unwrap another Secret Santa gift! Bonus cameo from my almost 1 year old πŸ‘ΆπŸ». I thought of sharing the showcasing duties among the two of them, but Ramona felt she was the unwrapping role was exclusively for her. "She could eat the paper! And that would be bad!" Can't argue with that.
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    "IT'S SALT!" she screams and obscures the label. "Is it salt Mommy?"
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    Lavender bath beads πŸ’œπŸ’œ I opened the vial and the smell is divine! Ok, Mommy needs some Me Time! πŸ›€
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    Day 6
    Thus far, Ramona has reveled in the unwrapping of my Secret Santa gifts, but has been uniterested in claiming the contents. Except the cookies which were shared.
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    Until today. "IT'S A HAT FOR ME!" she exclaimed. "Right...for you..." Maybe when she loses interest I will quietly steal the soft white hat back... 😏
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    Day 7
    Secret Santa gift opening buds! Ramona agreed to have Olive sit by her, as long as she (per usual) got to open the package. Fortunately Olive was way more interested in yogurt snacks.
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    Upon finding out it was a grown-up movie, Ramona claimed the yogurt snacks. But Olive gets to kick the wrapping paper with her feet so we're all good 😊
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    The King's Speech! I always wanted to see it but never have! Can't wait to watch! 🎭🎟πŸŽ₯
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    Day 8
    Update before next gift reveal: I got my hat back! It continues to snow non-stop
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    Another tantrum averted by the promise of a Secret Santa Opening! I know she looks cute to you guys, but to recap: she's three. She tantrums a great deal. I have been using these gift unwrappings as bribes to be good.
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    "It's boomarks for Mommy! Yaaaay!" OK I take it all back! She can be the bestest sometimes.
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    Thank you for the bookmarks!! You acknowledged how much reading is a part of my life! (It's probably like...68% of what I list about). On top of which, bookmarks are a hot commodity in this household because I have a 1 and 3 year-old who tend to plock them right out of my books! I love the messages on them too! 😍
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    Day 9
    OK. A little background story for today's unwrapping. Just before we opened today's gift, Ramona had been drawing on a piece of paper with a ballpoint pen. I turned away for a minute and she decided to scribble onto the kitchen counter. She showed me proudly, and I gave her a very long lecture about how drawing was for paper only, and not anywhere else...and can you see where this is going @karlalucia ? 😬
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    It happens to be a gift for her!! Harold and the Purple Crayon! She was so excited! We've never read it before, and we had to read it right then and there! πŸ˜†
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    I have to say it's the perfect book for her age- just right for her attention span. But when we finished she mumbled, "It's not fair. He's a baby, and he got to color all over." πŸ˜‚ Oh dear! You couldn't have timed that any better! πŸ–πŸ–
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    Day 10
    I've been looking forward to this one in particular because the package felt book-like, and I was excited to see what @karlalucia would recommend. If there's anything li.st has taught me, it's that others have a wealth of knowing about books I've never heard of, and a little push in the right direction leads me to reading a fantastic book that I would have otherwise never picked up.
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    "It's a looooonng book for Mommy!" The Little Friend by Donna Tartt. I've never heard of it! Yaaay! The blurb on the back is intriguing, like a murder mystery with a young girl protagonist. Impeccable timing as ever, I just finished my last book yesterday and hadn't thought about what to read next. So I'm jumping right into it tonite!!
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    Day 11
    We're winding down to the end of my 12 Days of Secret Santa Extravaganza! What a trip! I've been so pleasantly surprised day by day with @karlalucia 's thoughtful gift giving spirit. And it's gotten my family into a holiday mood all month. β„οΈπŸŽ„β˜ƒπŸŽ
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    "It's a scarf! For me! Yaaay!" Ugh- I can't say no to that face! Wow!! When I suggested winter wear I did not anticipate a whole ensemble, but this scarf completes the set!! I was able to reclaim the hat from her without incident, so I'm hoping the scarf will go the same way. Don't worry everybody, she has her own winter wear β˜ƒοΈβ›„οΈβ˜ƒοΈ
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    Day 12- Field Trip!
    So the final package was separate from the main one πŸ“¦ , shipped from Best Buy. It was just as thoughtful and mindful of my lists as every other item. @karlalucia did her homework and knew that the perfect CD for me would be the newly released Hamilton Mixtape! So perfect that I had already gotten it by preorder and have been listening to it nonstop 😬
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    But no worries! Because I returned it at Best Buy and picked up A Seat at the Table! Can't wait to listen to it on my commute. Yes, I'm an old lady who still uses CDs.
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    What an incredible 12 Days of Secret Santa it's been! I'm in full Holiday mode. I'm stylishly accesorized for winter (still snowing here!) I'm starting a good book, and have a good movie and music to look forward to. My kid enjoyed the day by day excitement, and partook in cookies and even a gift of her own! I truly lucked out this year!
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    Happy Holidays Everyone! Happy Li.st Secret Santa experiences! Happy Holidays and much love to the amazing @karlalucia and @DawnCloud !!
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    β˜ƒβ„β›„οΈβ„οΈπŸŽ„β˜ƒπŸŽπŸŽ‰πŸŽŠπŸŽ…πŸŽ„πŸŽ…