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The 12 Days of What Moms of Teens Really Want for Christmas

As a mom of older kids, I don’t really have much use for leaping lords or piping pipers. On the other hand, I’d gladly take twelve days’ worth (or more) of any of these gifts.

On the first day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… a peaceful night at home with my whole family.

This is the Red Ryder BB Gun of mom-of-teens life. All I want is for all my people to be at home, staying home, getting along reasonably well, spending some time in the same space together.

On the second day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… two rolls of toilet paper someone else replaced.

I’m talking fully replaced here, not just perched atop the old empty roll. It goes without saying that the positioning of the new roll will reflect the fact that we are, very correctly, an “over” family.

On the third day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… three unloaded dishwashers.

And not to be demanding, but I don’t want to have to ask about this or know it’s happening. I just want to open the dishwasher and find it already done. Thanks so much.

On the fourth day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… four long naps.

Dear family, I’m crazy about you. But I haven’t had a decent night’s sleep in at least 18 years. Naps are my new love language.

On the fifth day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… five peppermint mochas.

Re: the aforementioned sleep deprivation (see Day 4). Also: peppermint is calming. I trust that requires no additional explanation.

On the sixth day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… six loads of laundry—washed, dried, sorted, and put away.

Also known as, “Reaching the summit of Mt. Laundry.”

On the seventh day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… seven “I love you” texts.

Just because it’s true. Both ways. (And that’s the real gift, by the way.)

On the eight day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… eight Hallmark movies.

Yes, I know they’re utterly predictable. But let’s face it: life with teens isn’t. It all makes for a nice balance.

On the ninth day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… nine take-out dinners.

I’ve cooked or assembled or heated up approximately five zillion dinners since I gratefully added “mom” to my life resume. If ever there was a time of year to put that number in a holding pattern, this is it.

On the tenth day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… ten ornaments my kids made when they were little.

Sob! The miniature school pictures shellacked onto Christmas bulbs! The foam tree you bedazzled to within an inch of its life at “kids ‘n’ crafts night”! Your tiny handprints preserved for posterity in clay. Don’t even think about sticking these back in the ornament bin.

One the eleventh day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… eleven unexpected thank-yous.

One of the best surprise gifts ever. One size fits all moms. And you’re entirely welcome.

One the twelfth day of Christmas, my true loves gave to me… twelve real-deal hugs.

Not trying to infringe on personal boundaries here, but if you’re willing, I’d take both arms and your full height and weight leaning in. For at least the space of a few breaths. Even though if this happens, I might not be able to breathe, for all the best reasons in the world.

Personally, I’d be one happy mom to get anything (or everything) on this list!

Elizabeth Spencer

Elizabeth Spencer is mom to two daughters (one teen and one young adult) who regularly dispense love, affection, and brutally honest fashion advice. She writes about faith, food, and family (with some occasional funny thrown in) at Guilty Chocoholic Mama and avoids working on her 100-year-old farmhouse by spending time on Facebook and Twitter.

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