Tuesday, October 02, 2007
Happy Shopping, Merry Christmas
An Aside: I thought I had hit a blogging wall. Not just any blogging wall, but the kind that makes you close down your blog. But then today, inspiration struck, and the first thought I had was, "I need to blog this." And that's when I realized that no matter how out of fashion blogs get, and no matter how little I have to write about, I will still need a public space to announce my nonsense (otherwise I might take to the streets).
I have been noticing lately how busy I am. Which is a strange thing for me, since I usually don't notice how busy I am until I'm sick and in bed. But it was on the 3rd or 4th call to members of my family about Thanksgiving plans that I thought, "I don't know if I have time to be doing this right now." I was driving to tutoring (which I do every other Monday night, or so) from work, and every 38 seconds (a rough estimate) I was hanging up my cell, and calling a different member of my family to frantically say, "I talked to Lisa, and she said that won't work, so how about Sunday night?... Maybe?.... OK." *click* *dial* "Peggy said Sunday. What? Well, cancel it!... OK." *click* *dial*.... It was while I was waiting at a four way stop, and for someone to consult their calendar that it struck me that we hadn't drawn names for Christmas presents yet.
I say "yet", because normally this is done in September, and yesterday was October 1st. My brother, Jeff doesn't believe in drawing names before Thanksgiving (apparently it's more challenging for him to get into the Christmas spirit in 85 degree weather, than it is for me and my sisters). When we were kids, we used to not tell each other who we had, and it was always a "big surprise" on Christmas morning. But it was always really hard to keep it a secret (especially for me because I still have a hard time keeping a good secret - hence the blog). Especially when you're expected to keep the secret from the beginning of August until the end of December. Jeff was also opposed to any of us "forgetting" to keep it a secret (I don't think he's a fan of the entire process - except the getting gifts part, of course). If we were going to keep it a secret, doggonit, the people who wanted to draw names in August (Lisa and I) had better keep it zipped all the way to December 25th. We've since dropped the "secret" part, but we never dropped the "doing it early" part (a compromise). However, this year, as I was talking on my phone on October the 1st, I thought that we were cutting it unnecessarily close. After all, there are only 85 more shopping days before Christmas.
So, I got the "go ahead" yesterday to draw names for Christmas (Margo gave permission for Jeff - she said she just won't tell him until after Thanksgiving, I got Peggy's permission, and Lisa is up for drawing names after the Fourth of July). So, on my lunch break, I called Lisa and we drew names for Christmas. Kate (an unbiased 3rd party) drew them. She has a genius for name drawing, because she got it on the first try. Normally, we have to draw names at least a three or four times to make sure that no one either has themselves nor their spouse. But Kate! On the first try she got it right! A prodigy. She even worked through her initial confusion about whether or not these squares of paper were tickets, and what they were tickets for.
So, we're ready for anther Christmas at the Waibels. Well, as long as we can squeeze our shopping into 85 days. Thanksgiving, on the other hand, is still undecided.