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Saturday, December 27, 2008

Ho Ho Hold up

Well I have just experienced my 55th Christmas. I cannot claim I remember them all, especially the first ones; but this seemed to be a good one. Of course, nothing compares to Christmas as a kid. The only thing that comes close is Christmas with your own kids. (warning - Santa buster ahead) To an extent anyway. I have told many people that I quit enjoying Christmas as much when Santa started leaving me the bill. I also remember the WORK he left me. With six kids, my Santa building experiences top a lot of folks, I am sure. I have built a lot of bicycles, wagons, and other riding contraptions. I have set up train sets of different sizes and configurations. I have unwrapped, assembled, and set up enough toys and vehicles to start up a small toy shop. Going back to my post about building the bird houses and how every time I go to build something, I never have the right tools and/or supplies. This was also true almost every time I went to build the contraptions that "Santa" left for me to build. I remember one particularly cruel Christmas that I was hammering a seat post into a bike at about 2 am. IT WAS IN UPSIDE DOWN!! Then I spent the next hour removing it. I lost all the skin on one set of knuckles and still have trouble making a fist with a finger on my right hand from that one. I never did get the bike together that night. I remember on Christmas morning (after about three hours sleep for me) we were explaining that the elves had not been able to finish the bikes due to a union dispute, or something like that. There were a few doll house setups that had more intricate parts than a nuclear reactor. There were some of these "toys" that were more complex than a 5,000 piece jigsaw puzzle. There was nothing that would make me weaker in the knees than opening a parts bag on a toy stove at 1am and having 123 parts fall out. Most of them were precisely designed to fit in only one spot, but looked exactly the same as twelve others until you measured them to find the 1 mm difference. Then there was the wooden items that included the bottle of glue necessary to assemble the piece. The problem was, the glue was usually a small yellow lump in the bottom of the bottle. There was less moisture there than in the Sahara during the dry season. Of course any other glue we had in the house had been used to make ornaments for the tree or Christmas cards (or eaten). So there I was mixing my proprietary mix of flour and water to make homemade glue in the wee hours of the morning. I would be hunched over my mixture like a illicit drug maker in a trailer park in the country. I will admit that Christmases are much less hectic now. I also have to admit having all my knuckles and a full nights sleep on Christmas morning are both wonderful things. I will also admit that some of the magic was in those early morning searches for a part to replace the one I dropped down the drain. Ho Ho Ho