For a family that has spent a lot of time saying 'no' over the past year, there was certainly a lot of 'yes' on Christmas morning...
My son and my husband are TOTALLY enthralled with Beatles Rock Band, which we purchased...er, mentioned to Santa, way back in October. Charlie, whose mother (me) spends a good deal of her 'yell time' decrying the effect of electronic entertainment on the lives of the family and the development of her children, never expected such a bonus under the tree this morning, but...well, what can I say...that was some pretty effective marketing out there--the commercials and all. John can't take his eyes off the screen--the graphics, the animation. Pretty amazing stuff.
Ben is happy with his Bakugan, a new Yugioh tin of cards, his HeroClix, and a new Interwrite drawing tablet (from Hudson!).
John was surprised with a camera, a hard drive (to back up his novel), a new toaster, a whistling teapot (a sound that's been missing from our house for 20 years....), and a Memory Foam mattress pad like the one Janet has. (Yay!)
The house is filled with the smell of good burning wood courtesy of our poorly designed chimney. Charlie is distressed about replacing the toaster because the toaster we have now is the same toaster they used in "Ghostbusters II" to 'toast the slime' (or something). I promised him that we would decommission the toaster from toasting, but would relegate it to theatre prop status so we'd still have it.
Ben thanked me several times. He seemed excited about exploring the possibilities for art projects in a new magazine Santa brought him that is totally written and illustrated by children.
Charlie is looking forward to upgrading his computer with the $100 Lucky Life Best Buy gift card. [Lucky in that I dropped it in the parking lot and a Best Buy employee called to tell me it had been found even before I knew it was gone. Wow.]
And me? I'm cleaning up after us all. I bagged up all the wrapping paper to take outside and John said I looked like the Ghost of Christmas Over. Chuckle. I'd like to do some entertaining over the next couple weeks and Christmas is the only time of year when my house is actually clean...
It's not all commercialism here, really. We went to church last night--Park Chapel--where we sang and sang and sang. I know all the words to all the verses. I'm one of those people who "honors Christmas in my heart and tries to keep it all the year". I hugged my good friend Dennis, who was there with all the kids (while Rachelle went after the new puppy). The service opened with the wonderful Linus speech form "A Charlie Brown Christmas". Wonderful. Enjoyed the singing of Don Crane, the Fine Arts minister there who has become a friend. Enjoyed being in the church period. The music there speaks to me.
After, we delivered some of my cookies to friends--Urbans, Judy and Sharon, Coles... Came home and wrapped gifts (the show put me back a month in Christmas prep) and filled the time until it was late enough to try and get the kids to bed. We opened our ornaments.
Our ornaments are a wonderful time capsule of our lives. We shop seriously for 'the' ornament that encapsulates our year--this year, Charlie got a Ghostbusters ornament, Ben got yet another Godzilla ornament (yes, I know--how festive--and we have five of them now...), and I got John a TV ornament that plays the Twilight Zone theme. He got me a teddy bear that says 'Believe', but I have my ornament from "Fiddler" that Don gave me... ;-)
We read the stories--first "The Night Before Christmas", which I have memorized, so it's just a matter of showing the pictures; and then the Christmas story. My year was greatly enhanced by directing "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" this year where the Christmas story figures heavily. I'm forever changed, I think, from that experience.
After the boys went to bed, I wrapped gifts far into the night...played on FaceBook and watched "A Christmas Story" twice, I think (there's a 12-hour marathon of it on...TBS?). Thoroughly enjoyed reading everyone's updates: wrapping gifts, opening them, eating, movie quotes, celebrating Christmas, each in his own house, but sharing with the rest of us out there.
Ben just asked me if when I opened my iPhone, was it gonna glow like the Ark of the Covenant in the Indiana Jones movie. Ha.
Yeah, an iPhone was what I got. Charlie's idea for him, but we decided that he had enough distractions. I probably do , too, but what a cool toy.
Later today we're going to use John's movie certificates to go see "Avatar". I've heard mixed reviews, but it looks pretty good to me, and like a good Christmas movie.
A good Christmas, good family time, a good year.