Granted, this was still real life; cramps had me curled up on the futon for a while, while Otana was (and is) battling something nasty, and Sardonicus was (and is) fighting fatigue. But:
• Christmas Eve dinner was fantastic (Chin-Chin’s? Best. Chinese. EVAR.)
• The bedraggled little baby tree I bought dressed up nicely in ornaments both from last year and the ones Mom passed down
• Despite financial tightness there were lovely (and hideous) gifts all around, including ones that made Otana and myself squeal
• Christmas Dinner of homecooked ham (studded with cloves, packed in brown sugar, and basted with sangria and pineapple juice, homemade rolls, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes and mince pie was delectable
• Company of E. was fantastic; we got to show her The Incredibles, which she had not yet seen, and The Eye as she is fond of horror movies
Sure, we didn’t get Christmas “crackers,” and the tree was tiny, and dad’s presents came late, and cooking was a lot of work, but you know what? None of that mattered a single bit. I was with the two people I love more than any kind of presents, we all were in a frame of mind to appreciate and love one another, the food was literally fantastic, I got some things I really wanted for gifts, and the ornaments were really shiny.
So thank you pagans, for having the winter festival around which our current traditions are built.