Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Roasting Snowmen & Finding Pickles

This year was my favorite Christmas. But take that proclamation with a grain of salt because in the same way my favorite song in the whole wide world changes weekly, I always think this Christmas is the best.

But this one really was the best! Because we got a white Christmas. Growing up in the desert, snow on any day feels like a holiday. But snow on Christmas...holy crap. It feels like a miracle. I guess now that we live in the mountains, we can expect more white Christmases in the future. But based on the excited buzz from all the other mountain residents, I can tell snow on Christmas day is pretty rare, even for up here. So yeah, I might have been a little weepy about it. :P

Christmas was great in other ways too, besides the snow. Clint's parents spent the night on Christmas Eve. We did our normal pajama party with breakfast for dinner. But this year we played a new hilarious 'Build a Snowman' game with giant marshmallows. The roll of your dice determines which part you add to your snowman--eye, buttons, arm, etc. Clint kept putting body parts that didn't belong (I'll let you use your imagination on that one). Here's my guy, all adorable and un-obscene:

Later, when I won the game, in a show of good sportsmanship, Clint staked his snowman and roasted him in our fireplace. Then he ate him.

*Warning: The following images might be too graphic for younger viewers.

Okay, I might have had a bite of the fella too.  

We also played the most cutthroat gift-exchange game ever, one that makes the traditional White Elephant gift exchange seem polite. It would take too long to explain the rules here, but it was savage. And of course, as we do every year, we played 'Find the Pickle'. Here's some of us (our booties at least) searching for it.

Even George the dog had his nose in the tree, looking for that allusive pickle. Clint finally found it and won a frying pan.

Oh, and in the true tradition of Christmas, the boys ended up having a light saber battle on the patio.

On Christmas morning we woke up to snow! Oh yeah, I mentioned that already, didn't I. After oohing and ahhing over it, we ate breakfast with Teri and Carey and then opened up presents. Clint, the gift ninja, struck again. He built for me--from scratch--this hanging light fixture:

It's larger, prettier, and more rustic in person. I had NO idea I was getting this for Christmas, which Clint found amusing because apparently he and Elijah created quite a ruckus in the garage when they were whipping the wood beam with chains in order to distress it. (I can only imagine what our neighbors thought was going on).

Later that morning, we drove to my sister's house for Christmas with my side of the family, having to bulldoze our way through two unplowed roads. I'd like to say it was a chore, but we didn't care. Because...snow!

I was going to write more here about Christmas at my sis's, but I'm starting to lose steam. So I'll just sum it up by saying Shan's house was the usual craziness, with tons of delicious food, an entire fortress of presents, and lots of merriment.

That last part sounds cheesy, but it's allowed since this is a post about Christmas.


  1. Isn't snow on Christmas the absolute best?! We've had snow on Christmas every single year since moving to Utah in 2015. Living in Southern California and Central Texas, snow wasn't really a thing most of the time and definitely not on Christmas! We had a few Christmases as kids that were 80+ degrees!

    Did you have snow on Christmas when you guys lived in...erm... Minesota? Is that right?

    I love the pictures of your house. So cute! And that light fixture is awesome. Clint and Elijah did good!

    Merry Christmas (a few days late)!!

    1. Does the snow ever get old Kristyn? I hope not. I love that feeling of awe I get when everything's blanketed in white.

      Man, I remember those Christmases that were 80+ degrees!

      It was actually Wisconsin (you were close), and we were there for only one full winter and part of a second. Our first winter there it actually started snowing on Halloween and never went away until March. That year we flew to California for Christmas, so we missed out on a white Christmas. The following year, we packed up our U-Haul on December 19th and headed back to California, so we missed THAT white Christmas too. So unless I experienced a white Christmas as a kid that I have no memory of, this one was my very first one.

      Merry (belated) Christmas to you too!

    2. I don't think it ever gets old!! Around these parts, we do get tired of snow by around March. This year has been pretty mild, just enough snow to be pretty and novel, not so much that it makes living hard.

      Ha, I knew it was somewhere over there! Matt's company headquarters are in Wisconsin, so it's possible we may end up there someday. I would love to go there!

    3. Wisconsin is beautiful! Autumn there is like a storybook. Only thing is it's humid in the summer, and they have harsh winters. By March the snow is no longer enchanting. It's dirty, over-plowed chunks of ice, and you're pretty much done with it. They have a saying in Wisconsin: "We have two seasons: Winter, and construction." And man was that so true. I do love the culture though. The obsession with brats and cheese, Fish Fridays, 'bubblers,' and of course the Green Bay Packers!

  2. Snow on Christmas is so magical! ^_^ It's been so long. I'll live vicariously through you for the entire holiday, because I had the worst. Literally the most boring thing ever, and I'm so glad it's over. We didn't even play any games, Jodi!! Why?!!

    I love your marshmallow snowman so much! (And the roasting disclaimer is hilarious.) And the light fixture is fantastic. It amazes me that people even know how to do stuff like that, like with the wiring, and it's works, and it's one of a kind. ^_^

    1. Wait--so you DID get together with your family, right? But it just ended up being boring? I need more information about this because you're such a fun person, so the thought that you'd be suffering through the holiday just doesn't compute. This needs to change for next year Krystal!

      In addition to being cute my snowman is also totally edible! Except for I didn't have the heart to eat him, so he's currently sitting on my window sill until he gets stale or the ants find him. Except for we have no ants in winter, so he'll probably go stale.

      I don't get how people make things either. I always knew Clint could build things with wood, but the whole wiring the thing and it actually lighting up trips me out. It feels almost as magical as the snow.

    2. Well, since you kinda asked... :P My grandmother was being disrespectful and rude and hateful to me because I made her take her shoes off, and then she whined about being cold and rejected any attempt from me to help her, though she let my sister help her. My brother-in-law was playing Mario Kart for a good hour. My niece was half-wrecking my living room. My parents barely talked to me because they were too busy either talking about their granddaughter or watching her wreck things. My brother and his wife spent the last two years celebrating with her family, and I didn't even talk to them - they just texted a picture of their kid in an elf sweater. My sister and her husband were the only people to say hi to me, and it was my place! If my grandmother wasn't there, I would have pulled games out, but she was pissy and her husband was also there, and I can barely stand him. We didn't exchange gifts, so there wasn't even that as a distraction. So, it was a boring and painful two and a half hours before we went to the hibachi grill, and they never brought my rice and my food was a little bland because I had to ask the guy not to put butter on anything because I'm allergic, though he was super nice, he apparently doesn't know how to season anything, and after that everyone went home, and I just wish I stayed in bed all day. Though my dad got a hilarious fortune that said: Here we go. Low fat. Whole wheat. Green Tea. (Worth framing.) And my sister did come back over after her husband left for work to watch two episodes of America's Next Top Model season one with me before the kid got super fussy after mini-wrecking things again. That fortune and ANTM are the only reasons I'm not mad. Also, I had teriyaki sauce in the fridge for the leftovers. And all this was after my mom texted me and my sister on the 23rd to say she wanted to stay home, so I didn't even know I would see my parents until about 6:30 at night Christmas Eve, and my mom didn't even tell me she had changed her mind, my sister had to tell me.

      Also, there was no snow.

  3. Holy crap. That is a dismal Christmas. I am SO sorry. :-(

    I started to have a crappy Christmas one time, several years ago. It wasn't dull like what you described, but what happened was my in-laws did a fake-out gift. That is, I opened a gift, and it was a giant sealed box with a picture of a safe on it. Because the box was sealed, I really thought it was a safe. I was a little confused by the gift (like, why would they think I want this giant safe?), but based on the picture on the box, they spent a lot of money on it. So I put out the best of my acting ability and gushed over the gift, pretending I adored it. I went on and on over that safe, and how much I loved it. Well, about ten minutes later we broke the tape and opened the box, and it turned out the gift was actually a beautiful, old-fashioned chair--one that was on my wish list. I was SO HUMILIATED. I loved the real gift so much, but I had gushed so much over the "safe" (which they had done on purpose) and was so embarrassed about it that I couldn't even enjoy the gift. At that point I though Christmas was ruined for me. I couldn't get over my embarrassment. So what did I do? I took a few calming breaths in my bedroom, then marched to the kitchen and took two shots of moonshine. Fifteen minutes later--Christmas was saved! I had my sense of humor back and I was able to get though the rest of the holiday with a smile.

    Okay, I'm not advocating drinking here. Honestly the liquor was a placebo. What I'm actually trying to say is that when the situation you're trapped in is bringing you down, you have to make a mental decision to say "screw it," and be a fun person anyway. So that's what you're going to do next year. 'Cause you're way too fun and awesome to settle for anything less.

    P.S. My grandma passed away in February, but she sounds exactly like your grandma. I feel your pain.

    1. Games will be played next year no matter what! ^_^

    2. Good! If you need ideas next year, let me know...I got lots!

      Now go to bed, 'cause it's like tomorrow right now. :P

  4. I remember the time we got snow in North Carolina. All the trees on our road iced up. You've seen pictures of that road, right? I'll have to dig out the pictures of the iced up trees. It was magical. When the snow stopped, it was pretty late at night, but we took the kids out anyway, and the moon reflected off all the ice and the whole place was literally glowing. It was like something out of a story book.

    No snow in Dallas this year. Abilene got a lot.

    Oh, and Happy New Year!

    1. I've seen pictures of that road, but I'd love to see them again sometime, not to mention those iced trees. I remember your old home in North Carolina looked enchanting even without the snow, so I can only imagine it with.

      I have an almost identical memory as yours. It was around Thanksgiving and the desert (where I used to live) had a freak snowstorm. Very bizarre for us, as we would only get snow maybe once or twice a decade. The flurries finally stopped around 10:30 that night, and we did the same exact thing as you....we took the kids out for a walk. The way you described it above is exactly how I remember it, with the moon glowing from the snow and the street lights surrounded by amber halos. It was so calm and beautiful...almost ethereal. One of my most stirring memories. With the trees in North Carolina, your snowstorm would have looked even more magical.


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