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Monday, January 19, 2009

Toys, toys, toys

It's mid-January and I'm just getting to posting Xmas pictures. I guess I'm probably not the only one to have a long holiday recovery time.

We have a tradition in our house that many people seem to feel is cheating. We don't open presents on the 25th of December, we open presents on the first day that everyone's vacation has commenced. Why wait for a whole week before opening your presents? You could be spending that week enjoying the presents. Many presents we give and receive are sharing presents or games that we can all play together, so we even get more family time in. The main reason this tradition isn't cheating is that we aren't Christians and we try to be fairly practical. As such, it seems appropriate to celebrate the first day of our family holiday break.

I do like to take note of the solstice to bring back a little Halloween feeling. In a deep, warbling voice I announce solemnly to the children, "It is the darkest day of the year..." At first, they thought I was joking, then they thought I meant something supernatural. So, we had a little astronomy lesson to explain the joke. Jokes are always funnier when you carefully lecture the listener on all the important humorous elements.

Back to Xmas. We went to my folks house where my dad has steadfastly maintained the practice of giving toys. I love toys. I love giving toys. I love playing with toys. The only thing better than toys are in-joke toys. For instance, I've been getting my sister nose-themed gifts for three years running...

Theo got me a whole host of wonderful toys that I'm still happily playing with. The toy in this post though, is a toy my dad received -- a ping pong ball floater with which to practice your nerf shooting skills. Jasmine adored it and spent quite a bit of time perfecting the art of getting all five balls floating. (The main difficulty was her long pony tails or the sleeve of her sweater knocking the balls out of the air.) She giggled like mad every time she had all floating at once. She has the same taste as my Dad for shiny, colorful objects and toys that are slightly absurd or surprising. Actually, I think the rest of the family will also have to admit to the magpie-like predilections.

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