Friday, December 25, 2009

Mother Freakin' Nature. Yeah Baby!

You'll be happy to know that my Christmas spirit kicked in at the 11th hour. I was sitting on my couch late on Christmas eve eve (tweve) posting fascinating updates on Facebook: I'm thinking about maybe starting to wrap Christmas presents. Soonish. And Amy Leigh, who was out at her parents' house in Podunk, Western Kansas, took time out from posting about how her mom and dad were giving her the death tour (“tell us what you want when we pass, dear”) to remind me to check on the frozenness of anything I might be cooking for Christmas. Thanks, Aims. But let it not be said that I don't learn from my mistakes. I bought a refrigerated (not frozen) ham for Christmas dinner. Then the other Kristin posted that she was brining chicken and how she was just so skeeved out by raw chicken and I thought, I like that. Skeeved out. And now I want to use it in a sentence. Skeeved out.

Aside: I have a second job for a handful of hours a week (one just isn't enough—I have to fund my frivolous travel). The other Kristin was my boss in the other job, but then she left and now I have this other boss and we're not going to talk about that. Uncomfortable silence. So by this time it was close to midnight and I still hadn't wrapped any presents.

But the next morning (Christmas Eve day) I got up and overnight I had received a magic infusion of holiday spirit. Maybe it was the forecast of snow. Maybe it was the impending deadline. But I started baking like Julia Child on speed. I made a pecan pie and a pumpkin pie. Cranberry orange bread and 4 dozen spritz cookies and these nasty Pillsbury ready-to-bake snowman cookies (in deference to Daniel). The kids periodically “helped” and fought with each other and played in the sleet and gave weather updates (ice Mommy ice Mommy ice Mommy SNOW!), and Jim built a fire and got a serious buzz on from two beers.

When the snow came, the wind came, and then it really started to gust and guess what? It was a blizzard. A blizzard! It was our first blizzard in Kansas City in 27 years (according to Dave on Facebook) and it came on Christmas Eve. It was freaking awesome! Dave, even though he's Jewish, was going all Christmukkwanza and watching It's A Wonderful Life and wrapping gifts for his grandbabies. Apparently, Chanukah had only whet his appetite.

Even though she's a Kansas farm girl and can thresh an acre of wheat with one hand while fighting off locusts with the other, Amy Leigh was being all precious and whining about the storm, but Dave and I were amped up like two crack whores who had stumbled upon Mother Nature's crystal stash. We were singing briiiiiing it, baby!

We put out cookies and milk for Santa and carrots for his reindeer, and took some pictures in front of the fireplace while outside the wind howled like a deranged kelpie. After we put the kids to bed we noticed Anna had placed a small box on the table alongside the cookies. Attached to the box with a pipecleaner was a note that said: Dear Santa, I have made and collected some stuff for you. Inside was a candy bar from her Halloween stash, a penny, a sparkly pink heart sticker, a pine cone and a drawing of her holding hands with Santa. Neither of us had any idea she had done this. I shouldn't have been surprised, because this was so like her, so little-girl-thoughtful, and yet I am caught off guard each time. I have a note on my nightstand—a get well note from my last migraine—that is attached to a candy bar with a pipecleaner. It says: I hope you don't get any sicker. Instead I hope you get better. Love Anna to Mommy. That's my girl, you know.

And speaking of migraines, I woke Christmas morning with a real crackerjack of a headache. It laughed in the face of one Vicodin and shrugged meh to the second, and I got to experience a fuzzy Christmas, kind of like a soft-focus Hallmark greeting card. Every gift, even the gummy lifesavers, was so fucking beautiful I thought I would cry. When I saw that Jim had given me a Greek flag I openly wept. I'm still trying to figure out how to get in onto my widget.

Santa brought Daniel a race track. Like the rest of us, his elves are apparently importing their toys from you know where. So Jim was trying to snap the cheap plastic tracks together and he would get one set attached and move onto the next and then the first would come undone. About 45 minutes into this exercise he was swearing fluently in Chinese.

Finally, even though the wind chill was -7, the kids couldn't stand it any longer, they had to go outside. Fortunately, Santa had the foresight to bring them snowsuits this year, so Jim bundled them up and took them out to go sledding while I sat on the couch and fondled my flag and stared at the flashing lights on the tree. In fact, you have to see our tree. It's amazing. I'm going to take a picture right now.

After about an hour Danny came in and said Mommy I can't feel my face and I said yeah baby, neither can I. Then when the kids were eating lunch I heard him say Mommy a wolf, a wolf! And I looked outside and there was our coyote, chest deep in the snow, standing by a large pine. He looked at me and I just shrugged as if to say sorry friend, I know it's a holiday and all, but I don't have a large slab of meat for you this time. What a magnificent animal. He turned around and loped off into the woods and I turned around and walked into the tree.

Actually, I'm cooking our big meal tomorrow. Depending on the condition of the roads we have sevenish people coming over for dinner. Depending on the state of my head I'm either going to succeed in preparing a hell of a feast or not. But if it's the latter, I will have taken enough Vicodin that it won't really matter, at least to me. They can fling mashed potatoes at me and it will only increase my affection.

And while I'm thinking about it, and since it's Christmas and all, there's something I've been meaning to tell you. I realize most of us just know each other in the virtual sense and maybe reading my blog isn't the most important 120 seconds of your day, but still. I can't tell you how seriously delighted it makes me that you even bother. You are my favorite narcotic, the Kahlua in my brownie of life. What I'm trying to say is that I love you. I really, really love you.

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  1. :0)...
    Well it appears that except for the migraine...and I quote "I hope you don't get any sicker. Instead I hope you get better"... it appears you and your family had a wonderful couple of days.
    Mmmmmmm pecan pie and Cranberry orange bread would be two of my most favorite deserts, along with the Kahlua brownies of course!!! I wish we lived close by as I'm sure you would "gift" me some!!!
    Seriously...I do hope you feel better, I know how debilitating migraines can be...

  2. Hi AI - I would gladly gift you some goodies, we still have so many! Thanks for the well wishes. Yes, I would love to get these migraines figured out. Even though the vicodin is a wonderful literary device, it's getting a little old. :-)


Mmmm, comments - nom, nom, nom, nom!


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