Small talk...blah blah...small talk...blah blah...
Basically everyone's Christmas is pretty much the same. You visit family. You eat food. You get presents. If you are one of the unfortunate who did not get to experience a happy Christmas, you probably aren't going to go into it with a random person at work. You give the standard issue "It was good" answer and politely ask about theirs in return, and listen to some funny or sometimes not-so-funny anecdote about the holiday. On occasion, some one might try to inadvertently make you think the few things you received for Christmas were pretty pathetic as they tell you about their new car with a big red bow. At any rate, it is the same question every year from the same people. I don't really like it. I'm not one to fill the void with small talk anyway. Let's be honest - we often don't really want an honest answer to our just-being-polite questions...we just want the other person to say "Fine" and go about their day so we're not obligated to listen to a lengthy story.
I'm just keeping it real.
So, if you choose to read the remainder of my post, I'm going to tell you about my remaining three Christmases. If you choose to head out by way of your bookmarks or one of my friend's blogs to the right, that's okay too. I'm not about to make you feel guilty. I'm equal opportunity.
Christmas Eve we always spend at my mother-in-law's house. It's their family tradition to have dinner and open gifts that night, so we're keeping it that way. This makes it actually quite nice because that leaves Christmas Day open for my family. I hate having to decide where we're spending a holiday. Everyone wants you to spend it with them. Anyway, at some point during the afternoon I mentioned that every year I want to make a gingerbread house and every year I fail to buy one of those nifty kits. At 4:30 in the afternoon I set out to find a couple of kits because my sis-in-law decided that it would be super fun if we made them that night.
After coming up empty-handed at Walgreens, CVS, and even Wal-Mart, which I dared to brave on Christmas Eve, I headed over to Albertson's and my mother-in-law gave me the recipe over the phone so I could pick up the few ingredients we needed to make our own dough. You probably already know where this story is headed...so let me sum it up to say that gingerbread houses were not built in a day, much like Rome. If you are crazy enough to make your own pieces, you need to understand that no matter how straight you cut them out of the dough, they will become rounded in all the wrong places while baking. After you attempt to cement them together with icing, you have to wait about an hour between construction phases so that everything dries. Karyn and I really don't have the patience for that. Sometime around 2 AM we gave up our futile attempt and called it a night. I had 4 walls and no roof because it would not stop sliding off; she lost one whole wall to an earthquake and it shattered. Remind me next year that I don't want to build a gingerbread house.
Rather than just spend the night over there, Nick and I headed home and he decided that it would be best if we just went ahead and opened our gifts to each other before we went to bed. We had to head over to my Mom's the next morning and since neither of us was planning on getting up early, it really was the best option. We didn't have anything major to open, just some stocking stuffer-ish type things like books, CDs, and clothes. Our major gift this year was our second season tickets to the Dallas Summer Musicals for 2009. Click on the link to see all the show's we're going to see.
We spent Christmas Day at my Mom's for lunch and gifts there. Trey got lots of stuff and I scored a digital picture frame (Go Mom!). After stuffing ourselves we headed outside so Trey could play with his new skateboard, and I attempted to show him how to turn which pretty much only re-enforced the fact that I can't ride a skateboard to save my life.
That night we headed back over to my in-law's house and my Mom and Stepdad came along. It's so nice that our moms are good friends. We get to have lots of family gatherings with them together so we don't have to travel to so many houses. We played a serious and intense game of Taboo.
After Christmas we pretty much laid around and did a whole lot of nothing. We were off all through the weekend and sadly had to report back to work today. The first day back to work after a long break is always a major bummer and it goes by very slowly. I'm already looking forward to being off on New Year's Day.