Since I typically overwhelm my (two) readers with my pathological verbosity, I thought I'd give you some reprieve and overwhelm you with pictures instead. Yeah right, you I'm still going to blather on, pics or no pics.
We had an amazing christmas, and I hope you can all say the same. Naturally, during the preceding weeks of shopping, there were intermittent bouts of wanting to hang myself with my neighbor's noose (see previous blog), but even I can't reach that high, so I forged on, immersing myself in retail mania. We celebrate at my mom's, since Todd is Ebenezer Scrooge incarnate (said in love), and she and I always overspend. As magical as it is to watch my little darlings open 6,000 presents, the minute I haul all the shit home in 17 laundry baskets, I rue the day the baby Jesus was...well, I vow never to let it happen again. This year we made our tenth consecutive vow not to overdo it. And praise be to that sweet baby Jesus, we managed to tone it down this year. A lot. We promised to spend a little more on a few perfect gifts, and forgo (my dearest mother's propensity for) last-minute Rite-Aid impulse buys. The kids and I spent the night in the living room, watching Home Alone, and even though they are total sleeper-inners, I expected to be rousted and rushed to get to Gia's (my mom). To my surprise, they slept until 11:00, and it was I who shook them awake. En route to my ma's, as has become custom, I stopped at Starbucks and Jack-in-the-Crack for breakfast sandwiches so I don't become a bellowing tyrant about my kids eating candy in the morning. (I HATE that!)
The following are little portholes into an absolutely perfect christmas. (Well, except that Mom scoured the universe for a Barack Obama calendar, but was unable to find one. I was so sure I was getting one I actually asked, "Where's my calendar?" Lol.)
The loot: (Keep in mind this is for five people.)
Could this beautiful boy be any happier? He loves giving presents!
Gia, who brings christmas to life, with her beloved Quinn and Reilly:
The one day a year my semi-goth, pirate-loving, black-wearing girl gets all soft and festive (with her prized classic Rudolph):
The tiniest box in the world. I was obsessed with it, and didn't want to mar its cuteness by opening it. As for my chipped ghetto thumbnail? There's a story. Ever since I became allergic to every consumable food on earth, I have adhered to a diet of mostly bananas and dry Ramen. The weight is melting off so I've been whistling Dixie, you know? Except it turns out I'm malnourished because of my appalling prison food regimen, so my fingernails have begun falling completely off, a fact which no amount of polish can disguise. And my hair is falling out too. B says I will get scurvy soon. I'll have to brush up on my pirate jargon. Anyway, I love this box:
The collage we made Mom of her four grandkids:
Reilly's stocking was so overstuffed it begged us to call 911:
One thing Reilly really wanted was a diamond ring from an actual jeweler. I lucked out found the perfect one at Nordstrom (for $28), and we were all verklempt as her eyes filled with tears when she saw it. She says it's her favourite gift. (Heart melting.)
After going on a daunting treasure hunt, as is our custom for the kids' big present, I tricked Quinn into thinking I had gotten him some LAME video game, to which he responded with the perfect mixture of indignance and grace. He then discovered that inside the box was a receipt (reservation) for a soon-to-be-released game called Halo Wars, which was the only thing he wanted for christmas:
My mom and me, so happy to see everyone smile, and secretly happy it's fucking over. (ho ho ho) And no, my mom didn't get an eye lift, she's just trying to get ready for the flash:
Scorn me if you must, but they are the reason for the season. I have no idea why there is a haze over Reilly, nor why it looks as though Quinn's head is a transplant. What can I say, we're not perfect:
See? It was such a fabulous day my kids were glowing:
As always, we asked each other to name his/her favorite gift, and aside from Reilly's ring, which won out over a stereo and a scooter, none of us could. My mom cried over her certificate for the geese I bought in her name for a family in Africa through Heifer International. Same as last year, when I bought chickens. But she also loved her collage, and was awe-struck by the thought my kids into their gifts to her. Quinn's fave, when pressed, was Halo Wars. As for me, well, I have enough gift cards to build a house of cards, and you bet your ass I'm going EVERYWHERE tomorrow. If I remember, they were for Lane Bryant, Rockstar hair salon, Starbucks, and like 8 million dollars to Old Navy, since that appeared be everyone's default, lol. But, in terms of tangible things, I am so madly in love with my new red suede ottoman, I am going to fondle it right now, and buy another one tomorrow. I mean, these ridiculous legs have to go somewhere!
So that's my story, in too many pictures, and too many words. We have so much to be grateful for, and I hope everyone shared in that sentiment today. Thanks be to the fleet of friends who texted glad tidings as early as 7:08am. Not naming names (Megan). The deluge of festivity and love put a smile on this old curmudgeon's face.
And Jacob? Queen of evasive maneuvers and unanswered texts? I just want to say, I'll get you my pretty...and your little dog too!
Merry christmas guys.