Super Duper! Baby, It’s Cold Outside!

Christmas eve came to Tampa today with my family, a day that started eighteen days ago.

After a fun-filled, amazing weekend in Manhattan, I was back in DC with my sister’s family. It’d been quite some time since I had put up a tree and decorated it. My niece was dancing with her mother to their favourite song, “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”. And when the title words were sung, Bea jubilantly chimed in, giving the words everything she had, like her mommy did, “baby, it’s coooooooold outsiiiiide!!!!!!” as they twirled and twirled and twirled. To their left, my nephew was playing with one set of the Christmas lights, while his father untangled the others.

I was in heaven.

Pretty soon, my niece realized it was her responsibility to put the ornaments up, and smartly noted that it needed to be placed near the top of the tree, out of her brother’s grasp. Fourteen-month-olds loved to grab things, especially this little man.

I advised her, “Bea, you need to spread out the ornaments! Want some help?”

She beamed and nodded.

So I walked over and whispered, “Do you want to do something that is super duper fun?”

She beamed and nodded again.

“Ok, grab me an ornament please.” She did.

“Great! Let’s put the hook in!”

“Uncle Cecil?”

“Yes, Bea?”

“I need help closing this hook!”

“Of course I’ll help close the hook! Are you ready for our game?”

She beamed and nodded.

I whispered conspiratorially, “Ok, when I finish counting to three, we have to say ‘super duper!!’ So your folks know you got this ornament thing all figured out. Ready?”

She beamed and nodded again.

I whispered in her ear, “1… 2… 3….”

Then together at the top of our lungs, we yelled “SUPERRRRRRR DUPERRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!”

She giggled the best giggle I’ve ever heard in my life.

I picked her up and she hung the ornament high up on the tree.

And she giggled that giggle some more, filling the room with that all-too-special four-year-old giggly air.

After I let her down, she grabbed another ornament, stuck the hook in, offered it to me and said, “closing time!”

I smiled and I laughed and I exclaimed, “You’re right! Closing time!!” as I closed the hook onto the ornament.

We did that for every ornament we hung.

All sixty of them.

The last five, Bea purposely dropped. She’s a smart one, that Bea. She clearly didn’t want the game to end. And so those last five ornaments we put up twenty more times.

And with each one like we had for the first 55 ornaments, I whispered in her ear, “1… 2… 3….”

And together at the top of our lungs, we yelled “SUPERRRRRRR DUPERRRRRR!!!!!!!!!!!”

She wore me out.

I was in heaven.

And so began one of my favourite Christmas seasons starting in DC and ending in Tampa.

It was truly super duper.

And baby, it was cold outside (that day in DC)!


Go Adventure. Go Travel. Go Live.

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