Friday, December 26, 2014

Christmas Recap

Well, the crazy buildup for Spendmas has dissolved into the past, as had our most secular of holy days.  Did a lot, and though I’ve been feeling exhausted these past couple of weeks, I did get to relax a bit, and for that I am thankful.

A little over a week ago I did something to my right shoulder.  Rather, something to the muscles beneath and about it.  From the right side of my neck to the tip of my deltoid muscle, as well as underneath the clavicle, I’ve been experiencing a mildly annoying ache that seems to cycle back in forth in sort of a sine wave of pain, a couple of minutes out of every twenty minutes or so where it is quite bothersome.  Don’t know what it is, but I do know that Motrin doesn’t help but Tylenol does.  As I write this I’m an hour into high-strength Alleve, and it’s still bugging me.  Anyway, this was my Christmas visitor and it put me in a foul mood Christmas Eve.

Had to work until 3 pm on Christmas Eve.  No bonus, no overtime, but still a lot to do.  Got home just as my parents and my brother’s family were arriving.  The wife was abuzz all day getting the house and the girls in order, so in retrospect I’m kinda glad I had to work.  My folks brought filet mignon and lobster, and my stepfather cooked it on the grill.  Tasty, as always, this once-a-year feast. 

The loudness of it all and my shoulder both contributed to an intense headache.  Would’ve loved to have a drink, or a dozen, but with my heart and my general flabbiness I’m trying to avoid alcohol.  After the family left we put the girls down, finished wrapping presents, and put everything under the tree.  Little One was spying on us, and crept into our room later with questions.  No, Little One, there isn’t a Santa, at least in the jolly-red-man-in-a-suite variety.  I expounded on the real meaning of Christmas, felt it was falling on deaf ears, and did not push it.  ’Twas a most bittersweet moment.

Christmas Day, however, held no sadness.  The girls woke us while still dark out, 6:30-ish, and we unwrapped gifts with a passion they only save for birthday cakes and summer trips to the pool.  They all did very, very well: Tyler Swift tickets, a hamster (christened “Cinnamon”), tons of Frozen-themed toys and clothes, games, dolls, neat bracelets, beginner lip gloss, personalized cookies.  My gifts to them – a book on magic tricks for one, a diary for the other, posters for their rooms, a Grumpy Cat mug, a Magic 8-ball – seemed to go over well.  They were excited, spastic, in heaven.  It was a good time to be in the Hopper household.

As for me, I did as well as a middle-aged parent could expect.  Patch got me a wallet (which I desperately needed); Little One got me two finger-sized rubber chickens we can shoot at the TV screen when we watch bad horror movies (long story).  The wife got me a Seton Hall sweatshirt.  Oh, and one of our friends got me this:

Thanks Dee!

Little One and I both served at noon mass; thankfully, the least crowded mass at my Church on Christmas Day.  It felt good.  My shoulder made me sit rigid in the pew, but otherwise I felt okay.  The girls all left to visit friends in the afternoon while I laid in bed watching bad Syfy movies (for some reason Christmas Day was interpreted to mean Yeti Marathon for the suits over there).  Read a bit, dozed a bit, had a long, quiet, relaxing afternoon.  Had some raviolis for dinner.  The girls all watched Christmas in Connecticut; I went back to the upstairs bedroom and watched a couple of Mel Brooks’ movies.

All in all, not a bad Christmas for me.  Looking forward to the weekend, and the shortened week after. 

Feliz Navidad!

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