December 30th, 2005

Medieval Lady

Caroline Walker Bynum was so very, very right

You know, even though I KNOW that I'm sick, and Mom and I agreed that I should stay awaaaaaaaaaay from all food-prep or clean-up related activities, I kept finding myself either volunteering or almost volunteering to help, or automatically going to put something away. Just can't NOT do it.

And I am steadily drinking my way through the household's entire selection of herbal tea... at this rate, there will be nothing left by Sunday. Although, now that I think about it, Dad gave me some raspberry tea for Christmas, and I haven't really touched it yet. It is from a wacky International Imports store that carries many strange and eyebrow-raising products. Not really where you'd think to pick up beverages.

(The story behind the tea... This year for Christmas, we didn't actually give presents to each other (well, I had presents for people, but they were purchased long before the "we have all moved into smaller houses/tiny apartments/bigger apartments that are somehow still full of insta-clutter, so let's not give each other random gifts, ok?" decision was made, so that doesn't count...). We did, however, follow our long-standing tradition of going to a shopping mall or outlet center and splitting up, each with $20, with which we had to buy presents for the other three people, in a secretive and stealthy fashion.

Mom: This year, we each get $25 and have to buy a present for ourselves.

Me: Oh. Neat! Why?

Sibling: Well, last year, we wanted to include you, at least in spirit, so we all took $5 and bought ourselves the presents we thought you would have gotten us, and it was so much fun, we wanted to do something like that again!

So, December 24th, we spent the day at the mall, then came home, managing to miss the Christmas Eve church service (whoops), and so full from lunch at the mall that we also didn't do the traditional fondue dinner to celebrate Dad's birthday.

Yes, my father's birthday is December 24th. And, yes, he DID grow up with relatives weaseling out of things by giving him "combined birthday and Christmas presents" (not to mention the fact that his mother used to tell people that he had "ruined her Christmas" the year he was born... a woman with many fine qualities, my grandmother, but tactful, she was not...). Anyway, we did have cake and ice cream and he got presents, so that was good.

Christmas we went to church, and ate way too much, and pulled our mall presents out of the traditional paper bags and engaged in the holiday pasttime of guessing who had given us what. Sibling and I had given each other mugs, from the same store; Dad gave tea to EVERYBODY; Mom got me the Farmer's Almanac, which I promptly started reading until it was pointed out that that had been the FIRST present and there were still OTHER PEOPLE who had OTHER presents to open...; I got Dad a calendar; Dad got himself the same calendar... much fun was had by all!)

And thus endeth the World's Longest Parenthetical. *yawns* And after a really draggy, sleepy, taking-a-nap-and-still-nodding-off-over-the-keyboard kind of day, I an hoping I will be able to make it to midnight tomorrow. Pretty lights and sparkly fireworks, whee!
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