You may remember Aunt Dumbass from this post. I almost couldn’t wait to see her today and discover new levels of dumbassery. But it was not to be. Dreams shattered.
While sitting in ridiculously excessive traffic, I texted my sister, D. [Don’t worry – J (my husband) was driving, not me.]
Me: In traffic… only 20 minutes from home but we’ve been in the car for 45.
D: Ok. Be careful of crazy drivers.
Me: Hopefully the traffic breaks up soon.
D: BTW, Uncle Joe and [Aunt Dumbass] cannot make it. Dog is quite sick.
[Aunt Dumbass is my rephrasing… D did not call her that! Though I would have laughed my ass off if she did.]
And then D sent me a video of my nephew asking when my kids were going to be there. Adorable.
We finally arrived at Mom’s, only about an hour later than planned. [I am NOT thankful for Boston-area traffic.] Dinner was nearly ready and it smelled delicious.
I was especially happy to see my cousin Joey. He is the sweetest guy and he’s been through hell. He lost both of his brothers years ago (at different times) and he, himself, has a brain tumor. He seems like he’s doing really well – a stranger would never know he wasn’t perfectly healthy. But Mom tells me it’s not good… it’s coming back… he doesn’t want any more treatment. [My tragic cousins… 3 brothers… a story for another post.]
So… food. Made by my brother-in-law the chef. Everything was delicious… except sweet potatoes. I hate sweet potatoes. They are vile.
And let’s not forget dessert. We always have far too many desserts. [I made Oat Fudge Bars. They were rich and fudgy and oatmeal cookie-y and amazing – I will have to post the recipe.]
Of course, dessert is soured by the dreaded Christmas conversation. I kind of hate nearly everything about Christmas at this point in my life. [Later.] But we manage to enjoy dessert.
My son was thrilled with every single thing on that table that contained chocolate of any kind. My daughter wanted to try the apple crisp. J (husband) is all about pumpkin pie (something I find just as vile as sweet potatoes, maybe more). I had a scoop of apple crisp and a ‘Magic Square’ (what many call a 7-Layer Bar). And coffee. Much coffee.
We had a ton of laughs trying to decide how to do the gift exchange this Christmas Eve. We finally decided to do 2 swaps this year. One will be a re-gift – find something from home that is in great shape and is useful, but never used. The other will be a more traditional swap, but the gift has to be something that starts with a letter from my late Gram’s name. (The letters are A, K, M, N, R – her first and last name consist of only these 5 letters!)
We finally headed home. And we encountered a similar fate to the one we experienced on the way down.
Joy. It’s the most [irritating, annoying, stressful, frustrating, exhausting] time of the year.