Monday, December 22, 2008

Oh Christmas Tree, Poor Christmas Tree

What a sad tree. This is our "fun" tree with all the family ornaments. From handprints to handmade, this tree holds all the memories. Unfortunately, our overgrown kitten, Phantom, thought we called it the "fun" tree for a different reason. She's had a lot of fun lately knocking all the ornaments off and draping herself with garland as she pulls down all the decorations. Looks like she's had a good time. The kids laugh at the mess. I try not to think about it. At least this hasn't happened to the "nice" tree . . . yet.

Here is another one of our favorite Christmas traditions--gingerbread houses! And yes, I made the gingerbread myself; no graham crackers here. Ah, what good times. Happy eating!

Umm, candy. Look at all that concentration. Come on Christmas, we're ready!

Thursday, December 11, 2008

It's Not Really Christmas Until Stuff Starts Breaking

That's right. Just when it's time to open the wallet to show the family and friends how much you appreciate their kindheartedness, a cloud of doom spreads over the house, sprinkling cinders of destruction, so that all the money that would have repaid someone's loyalty and dedication, ends up being given to a plumber or electrician; a stranger you never intended to spend anything on at all.

Such is the case at the Aidukaitis house this month, only instead of a plumber or electrician, we are giving our money to the furnace man, the glass man, and some lucky online computer warehouse. Yeah, and with our family erring on the side of practicality, I now know exactly what my husband's going to get me for Christmas this year--new ink cartridges. All right!

And so we've had a trying month so far. Just after Thanksgiving we noticed the heater wasn't warming things so well. Our room was fine, but all those kids on the other side of the house started putting up a fuss about a sixty-three degree high. Funny, none of the 24 people here at Thanksgiving complained. So we called in the furnace guy and recharged the geothermal unit on the kids' side of the house. Problem solved. So we started our Christmas shopping with warm hearts and bright smiles. Then the printer stopped. You can imagine the routine: The wife tells the husband that something is wrong with the printer. The husband gives her the appalled look that she still can't solve the simplest of technical problems. He drags his feet to the printer, pushes a few buttons, checks for jams, flips the power off and on, scratches his head, pulls a few things apart, sits at the computer to check out that end, sighs heavily, gets on a different computer to try from there, purses his lips, destroys the office over the course of two hours trying to find the problem, then loudly proclaims the printer broken, threatening the children not to touch any computer equipment ever again. The wife, meanwhile, stands by waiting for the apology that will never come. Oh well, such is life. Adding a new printer to our Christmas list, we crossed out a few other things and went on with our gift purchases. And then, by some freak shock wave, the glass shower door in my bathroom fractured into a cool spider web design, and is now shattered in a heap in the tub. So now Erik and I are using the kids' showers, noticing that the showerheads are clogged with hard water scale or not getting enough water pressure to wash anything thoroughly. Funny, I was wondering how the kids were keeping their summer tans. The Thanksgiving guests never mentioned the water problems either. All of a sudden, it looks like our shower improvement plan might take in more than just our bathroom.

So, if your name is on our gift list, and you receive something that you feel does not meet the standard of such a high caliber friend as yourself, perhaps you will take all of this into consideration, and be thankful for any small token you receive. After all, you could have been unfortunate enough to take part in our Thanksgiving House of Horror.