Merry Christmas Like a Boss

We have three cats that take pot shots at ornaments on the Christmas tree and act like they're king of the jungle.  Then there's Murray who actually brought us TWO Christmas presents this year. He's so thoughtful.  The tricky part is getting him to drop it... 
For the record, a while back I saw him swat a bat out of the air.  He's the only surface-to-air cat I've ever known.  And yes, his eyes glow like that when he's in hunt mode.  He's just that awesome.

Rico, our Grinchy, child-hating feline, has been camping out under the Christmas tree, hissing and swatting at any kids who come by to sniff around their presents.  So I guess he's been kind of our Christmas Day insurance policy.  The other two cats have been completely useless unless you count 'permanent bed warmer' as a job.

The kids aren't fairing much better today.  The change in routine that comes with vacation time combined with Christmas anticipation is really throwing them off.  We were talking to some other parents at church tonight about how both our kids had been sent to their rooms today.  Yo heard the conversation and wanted everyone to know that she had only gone *once,* knowing that her brother couldn't say the same. Habta has been all over the emotional map today.  It could just be jitters and too much screen time, but we're kind of thinking that the MSG from the mountain of Chinese food we had last night might have something to do with it.  He rarely gets crabby right after eating, and for three meals we've been working down those leftovers and his mood swings.  If we're right, it could explain some things.  We also watched a movie tonight where a father and his teenage son deal with the death of their wife/mother.  I swear I had no idea that was going to be a plot point.  I'm sure THAT had nothing to do with it...

On a lighter note, the kids got to open one present each tonight, of mama's choosing.  They were unwrapped with a squee, because who wouldn't want pink panda one-piece footed pajamas ??? and a slow and low "These are awe-some" from the teen boy who can now dream of Chuck Norris in his new camouflage flannels. I'm sure Chuck sleeps in camos too.


So, what did you do today?

A lot, actually.

Cleaned the bathroom
Put dishes away from dishwasher
Washed other dishes
Took kids to school
Worked out
Did 3 loads of laundry
Cleaned inside of refrigerator
Finished 2 mittens
Helped one kid with math
Helped other kid with writing
Taught 2 children to knit
Made quesadillas
Put dishes away from dishwasher (yes, again)
Got lunch stuff ready for kids

I think it's time for bed.



My grandmother on my mom's side was an artist. She was actually much more than this, but for the sake of introduction, I'll just say she painted a lot. As a life long painter, she had her style, her preferences, and definitely some phases (or periods as the artsy types call them) which are kind of cool to look back on.

To say she was a driving force in the family would be an understatement. Whether intentional or not, she knew how to build a legacy. When she died, she left a room full of paintings, volumes of poetry, two generations of singers and musicians, and multiple grandchildren and great-grandchildren named after her (I can name 4, but there's probably more.) I've always been glad that my wife got to meet her, and saddened that my kids will only know of her through her impact on me, and will never meet her in person. I suspect they would have gotten along very well and would have had a lot to talk about.

I remember that after she died, everyone in the extended family got at least one piece of her artwork. There was a lot to choose from and if I remember right, the rules were pretty simple. Since she did a lot of portraits, if you were in it, you got it. Then her children picked their favorite(s.) Then the grandchildren could squabble over whatever was left from oldest to youngest. After all was said and done, my uncle kept the rest and made something of a showroom in his basement. A couple months ago we were at that uncle's condo and I actually got to peruse the 'gallery of leftovers.' There was all kinds of stuff that either I had never seen, or had completely forgotten about. Half way across the room I spotted a painting and said, "Looks like grandma knew something before the rest of us." Yo was kind enough to pose and prove my point.

Suspicions confirmed, they would have gotten along famously.
I don't know anything about this painting or when or why my grandmother decided to put it on canvas. I just know that if you're in it, you get it. I also know that I would have stiff armed my uncle and ran out of there with that painting if I thought I could fit it in the car.


And you were expecting what exactly for Christmas?

Back story: Two days prior to this conversation with my darling daughter, I had actually promised to take the kids out for ice cream 'soon' so I'm sure that somehow what follows is my fault.

Yo: Dad. You are GOING to take us to McDonalds for ice cream now.
Me: I am, am I?
Yo: Yes, and if you don't, I'm going to punch you in the face.
Me: Oh really?
Yo: Yes, I'm going to punch you in the face and drive us there myself.
Me: Well then I guess I better take you to McDonalds.
Yo: Yes and when the policeman pulls me over and asks why I'm driving, I'll just tell him you are drunked.
Me: Really.
Yo: Yep, and if he says you look like you got beat up, then I will tell him it happened when you got kicked out of one of the bar places. I had to drag you to the car to bring you home.
Me: Did you see this in a movie?
Yo: No.
Me: You've been thinking about this for a while haven't you?
Yo: Nope, Just made it up right here.

(Note that we were both laughing after she said 'punch' so it was all in good fun. Kind of disturbing, but funny nonetheless. I think she gets it from me.)

And lest anyone think that my son would be above such immaturity, the other night in the car he was trying to negotiate with me that I should leave his mother at "one of those bar things or a tattoo store" because "I'm sure there's nice mans there who would treat her very good" just so he could sit in the front seat. It is a heated seat, so I could see his point. I personally didn't think it was 'dump your mother at a brothel' cold, but then I wasn't sitting in the back. In shorts. And sandals. In December. But yeah, that would be a quick ticket to the hot seat alright.