We celebrated Christmas early with my family. It was a lot of fun at "the big house" as we're calling Donna's new abode. It's just outside of Coalmont and it comes with a neighbor who Chevy Chase would envy. I'm sure it'll take that guy until Spring to get all the outdoor decorations put away.
I brought a box of old photos rescued from my parents' house. I'd share them with you but I'm afraid my family would kill me. Somehow no one thought they looked good in the 80s and early 90s...
On the way home from shopping with Auntie Jen, Alison was lamenting how bored she was. She was so bored it was as if she was in a Civil War museum. "Grandpa would love to be in a Civil War museum; he wouldn't be bored there at all," I said.
"Grandpa was in the Civil War?" she said, incredulously.
Like Indiana, there wasn't much snow in Maine this holiday but we made the most of what we had. The morning we went sliding, we were the only ones at the golf course where last year there was tons of snow and the famous couch-down-the-hill sliders who let Alison climb on board. It was fun just being there by ourselves and not too cold, either.
On one of the flights home, there was a man with an infant in the seat beside Jeff. Ali and I were across the aisle. A woman with another infant stopped by to chat with the man by Jeff. They were siblings on their way home from visiting their parents. She was assigned a seat several rows back.
By definition an officer and a gentleman, Captain Reed offered to switch seats with the woman.
Alison, flashing back to last year's Spring Break trip where we were surrounded by a horde of screaming babies, hissed in my ear: "He did it to get away from the baby!"
James and David are wearing wedding bands, a fact that didn't escape Auntie Jen's eagle eye, although the rest of us were apparently in a coma. There should be a party soon to celebrate. We're all very happy for them. They may need a crash course in how to be a new couple though.
1. They refused to do a classic "hand" pose to show the rings.
2. David insists on wearing his ring on his right hand because: "I'm left-handed."
Alex came over the day after we got back home from Maine. After a week surrounded by only grown-ups, Alison was ready for some time with her peer group. It took us a while to connect and I asked Ali to help me with something in the interim.
"Sorry Mom, I can't. I'm waiting for the phone to ring," she said. I shuddered and sent up a prayer that I won't witness that incident with a different context anytime soon.
Thirty seconds after the "guess what I gots" the two pals were scrambling downstairs so Alison could show off her iPad and they could get to breeding new dragons on Dragonvale -- an artform she'd spent hours trying to instruct her grandfather on. (I don't think the lesson took...)
I set about dis-assembling Christmas upstairs. Before I could get to the first ornament, I hear the pitter patter of 10-year-old feet. "Mom, can we borrow your iPad?"
"I thought you were playing with Alison's iPad."
"Yeah, well, we think it would be better if we each had one."
Ah. Technology...It's not like I was using it anyway...
We spent New Year's Eve with John and Lisa and a nice bottle of Krug. Jeff found it on crazy sale a while ago. Like the Dom we had a few years ago, it's clear why it's priced so much higher than other champagnes.
As we marveled at the taste, I asked the boys if they'd pay for another bottle. Without hesitation and nearly in one voice came, "No."
"I'd buy five $40 bottles instead," said my favorite Republican.
Christmas is back in its bins. The house is spic and span from the obligatory cleaning that goes along with packing up the holiday and the zero-point soup is simmering on the stove. It's back to reality next week.
Hope your holiday was as great as ours and that 2012 brings about great things for you and yours. As for me, Ali has promised to train me on her new Kirby game.
"Don't worry, Mom. I'll start on a really easy level so you can learn," she said.