Christmas traditions, old and new

1. Family photo out-takes
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over-exposed dogs

We didn’t make a Christmas letter this year. Maybe I will get it done over the holidays (think of this statement as speculation rather than a plan). Nevertheless, as a first step toward creating a Christmas letter, yesterday, I attempted to take our annual family-photo-with-Christmas-PJs. CJ wasn’t very happy about leaving his new Christmas present to join the shot (new present = Game Boy, old school, bought used).

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when is this going to be over?

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help me pick up the dog, Dad!

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please, smile, CJ? please?

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he’s smiling! Now, what’s in your mouth, Foo? “Nothing.” Um, can you take it out, please?

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could we get just one good photo, here? just one?

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this is as good as it gets (click on photos to see in full)

2. Gifts
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lots and lots of candy; thanks, Santa

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new radio!!!!

This wasn’t on my wish list, but it was the perfect gift. A radio that turns on when you turn it on. Radical concept! No need to download or refresh or mess around with speaker connections. I opened the box, plugged it in, turned it on, tuned it to CBC Radio One, and the rest of the day was perfection. Music all day long. The Messiah in the morning, and cheesy seasonal songs the rest of the day. It’s the one day of the year that I can listen to cheesy seasonal songs with appreciation. Even the Queen’s address sounded good.

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I’m embarrassed to say we gave in to his relentless campaign for another of-the-moment electronic device

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“Coconut” the giant-eyed monkey (she has a weakness of stuffies with giant eyes)

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the “new” Game Boy

3. Do nothing all day
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how I spent my Christmas day: my job is done here

This third is a new tradition, only conceived of this very year, in fact, only thought of late on Christmas eve when Santa was packing the stockings. Kevin and I were feeling very full indeed after three consecutive days of Christmas meals (ham; turkey; paella + grazing). Our counters were blessed with pans of sticky buns given us by generous neighbours and family, and we looked at each other and said, “Who needs a big Christmas dinner?” So we decided to skip that part.

We skipped everything, really — all obligations, all work, all chores.

The kids let us sleep in till 9. I kid you not. We stayed in our PJs all day. I did no laundry. We did no meal prep. We did no dishes. I sat and drank coffee and tea and worked on a puzzle and listened to my new radio all day long. The house was thrillingly disastrous, so much so that the 12-year-old looked around last night and said, “This place is a mess.” HAHAHA! This is what it would always be like if Daddy and I took every day off! Then we watched a movie together (Parent Trap, the one with Haley Mills, still as funny as I remembered it from childhood). We ate sticky buns, basically. The kids added sugary cereal to the menu. There were the oranges from the stockings. We did not go hungry. It was exactly what we all wanted — to be together, and nothing more. It was the most peaceful, blissful Christmas I can remember.

These are my favourite people. We almost never get to spend unadulterated time together. What could be more special, more celebratory, more holiday-making?

4. Boxing Day turkey dinner?
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Today we’re being healthy and eating fruit and doing laundry and yoga and cleaning up the dishes. Our neighbour has loaned us her electric turkey roaster (there it is behind AppleApple), and we’re going to roast up our turkey today, and make the trimmings, too. I’m feeling ready for it again.

The ice storm cometh
On December 28th

1 Comment

  1. Happy Holidays. It sounds…um…reads like you’re off to a good, healthy start in 2014.
    Thank you for being a guest on my blog. I enjoyed reading your interview.

    Reply

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