'Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house, everyone else was sleeping but me because, seriously, who needs sleep anyway, right? Especially the night before dealing with pure chaos. With too much on my mind, I tossed and turned for hours, catching a few zzzs here and there, only to be batted in the face by a cat paw when Pepper decided it was time for me to get up at 2 and 3 and 4 and 5. By 5:30, I caved in, getting up to feed the minions. My thinking was I would take care of that, then curl up on the couch with one of the dogs for a bit more sleep.
Lo and behold, we had a midnight visitor in the shape of...well, um, dog vomit doesn't really have a shape to it. Groaning, I scrambled to take the dogs out, then return to clean up the mess. As we crept silently to the door, trying not to wake the slumbering son on the couch, I glanced to my left and discovered a wonderland of red. Yes, the lovely puppers must have been thirsty in the night, for they knocked over a pitcher of fruit punch Crystal Light. For the next fifteen minutes, I fed pets and scrubbed floors.
Time to rest? Of course not. Daisy's Adventures in Vomiting were just beginning, and she threw up all over the blankets on one of the couches. And on the floor. My guess is this is the result of stealing my entire batch of chocolate/peanut butter chip cookies yesterday when I ran to the store.
Then the daughter came downstairs - and was immediately sent back up to bed. I needed more time before I could deal with twelve-year-old Christmas day excitement.
I huffed and I puffed my way back to my bedroom, intent on getting some more sleep. I put on Investigation Discovery (because sick and twisted murder stories help me rest) and started playing Candy Crush Saga for the next hour. So much for sleep. Stupid new levels.
I crawled back out of bed to fill the children's stockings.
Then I cleaned up more dog vomit.
Then my daughter got up.
Then I worked on my son's laundry that he brought home.
Then I cleaned up some more dog vomit.
Then my daughter and I decided to make eggs and cinnamon buns and sausage and bacon for a grand ol' Christmas breakfast feast!
While my child scrambled the eggs, I took the sick dog out, and my son's dog escaped. My son leaped from the couch like twelve lords, running out the door, all the while yelling at me for letting Jenny out. Say what! For the next fifteen minutes, we chased her around our cul de sac and up and down the street, persuading her with treats and a ride in the car. Despite our best efforts to catch her, she eventually ran back to the house and through the door behind my daughter, whom I had sent back to the house to protect the food (Ha! The eggs had been devoured by Minnie). Grumpy son proceeded to retch his brains out, as physical activity is truly not his thing.
After all this fun, what more could Christmas have in store? I began to question why I even celebrate this holiday, as I am agnostic, and Christmas means nothing more to me than Santa Claus and an annual day to give presents.
An hour later, after some time for everyone to cool off, we decided to open presents. I swear my mother has some secret plot against me. A Dyson vacuum cleaner - because my vacuum isn't good enough. Does she know how much I could buy for the cost of that vacuum? A bracelet three inches too big - and I do not wear jewelry). A t-shirt that is likely to be too small (they always are; she must not realize after forty years that I am a bit more endowed than she). Chili mix - because I don't like to cook.
I promise that I know there is some positive thought in there. Why don't I buy Kirsten a nice new vacuum since hers is getting old? Why don't I buy this t-shirt with this lovely quote about misbehaving women? She'll get a kick out of that! Why don't I buy her something to make an easy meal? Plus it's from a foundation that helps out-of-work women find a way to make some income. But I always sense an ulterior motive, whether it is there or not.
The kids racked up gift cards galore and began planning how and when to spend, when all of a sudden, my son falls apart about not being able to pay his bills (he decided to move two hours away a month ago without any planning). Let the shouting match ensue! But we're not yelling. We're just Italian.
At this point, I made a big announcement: NO. MORE. CHRISTMAS. When it is the three of us, it is always a disaster. Last year, I was in my room crying, although I cannot remember why. But I was upset. Enough is enough.
I then my son to pack his stuff up and head back to Austin if he was going to continue to disrupt our newly peaceful home. Things calmed down quickly. I made spinach pie, we had lunch, and I took a nap. The afternoon has been quiet, aside from Jenny ripping apart a giant cardboard box and some ferocious dog flatulence floating in the air.
We are now off to see The Secret Life of Walter Mitty. The Christmas afternoon movie has become a tradition over the past few years.
If nothing else, I get two hours of no one talking to me. What could possibly to wrong with that?