First great thing of the season. My husband Alex who is a chef had Christmas eve and Christmas day off! That hasn’t happened in fifteen years. Chefs always have to work on holidays. Remember that before you sign up for culinary school.
Christmas day, just before our open house I decided we needed new toilet seats. I didn’t have time to buy them so for some inexplicable reason I decided to paint the toilet seats. I found my bucket of white paint, a brush and it was done. I promptly became distracted by something sparkly or fixing dinner and I forgot to tell anyone in the house I painted the toilet seat. The moment Mary and I heard the loud bang of a toilet seat falling I knew what happened.
Lexie started yelling from the bathroom. “Who painted the toilet seat? Why did somebody paint the freaking toilet seat?” She was loud. “Mom I’ve got a white ring of paint on my butt! What’s wrong with you people?” Mary and I were laughing too hard in the kitchen to answer.
On Christmas eve the entire family always goes to the historic Arlington Hotel to make fun of the gingerbread house ( we all talk about how much better it was when Alex was sous chef at the Arlington and in charge.) We all had Irish coffee and took lots of silly pictures with the gingerbread man. Jack started poking Mary and we got great pictures of her falling down.
Than Alex switched to Scotch and we went out to take more pictures with the giant light up Gingerbread men in the park. After a few minutes the extremely reserved and level headed Alex started doing some kind of silly ass dance with the gingerbread men. It was so out of character it made the night.
Christmas day my crazy Cousin Liz and cousin Bubba came to visit. Half my family is made up of educated and elegant folks, the other side is all outlaw- red neck- pirate. The educated elegant side is all dead but the loud happy crazy folks showed up and it was awesome. They even brought a cooler full of Old Milwaukee’s Best. There was lots of hugging and “I love you man” and group picture. It got really really loud so alex had to go outside. But we showed Liz how to make a duck face and Liz wanted to wear Lexes’ giant gold medal from the European Taekwondo Championships.
But the best part of Christmas was watching Mary and Lex and Sandor snuggle all over each other on the couch like puppies in pajamas. That went on for two days. They curled up giggling and cooing and laughing, they laid down on top of each other, wrestled for blankets and the clicker and loved being together.
This year wasn’t about the gifts, it never is. It was about the moments.