Tuesday, January 08, 2008

Our Christmas 'Ghee'

The undisputed highlight of this years Christmas was the 'ghee.' Now, it didn't have a ton of competition. We had a ... well ... an interesting Christmas. We Christmased on Cape Cod with the in-laws, which was nice, at least in theory. We all were feverish and throwing up for at least twenty-four hours, which wasn't so nice. Dipity got it first. My wife and I were next, and we received another gift simultaneously (our sewer system backed up, for the third time ... and this time the expensive fix came with the news that in the near future we'll have to have the pipes, which are pressed tar paper (!!!), replaced). My wife was in our room puking into a trash can while I was talking to the plumber out in the hallway. Merry Christmas!

Thankfully we had our family Christmas before the stomach bug hit. That actually was a pretty fun day. The actual Christmas came right after our illness. We thought about staying put, but that was pretty a pretty depressing thought, so weak, but no longer losing our cookies, we dragged ourselves to the airport. Turns out we dragged more than ourselves. Within two days of our arrival, my wife's parents and her brother were also throwing up. Luckily we were all well for Christmas.

Actually, it wasn't an awful time. It was just a little low energy, with the exception of Megan's brother who makes more noise while throwing up than I thought was possible. He screams into the toilet. We had a few nice walks on the beach, days of Dipity opening gifts, and, most importantly, a Christmas 'ghee.'

Christmas 2007 was all about the 'ghee.' Dipity liked driving past the lights at night. She said "oooh," and "wow" as we drove by. She also liked 'ohman.' We'll have to buy her a book or movie or something about Frosty the 'ohman' before next year. She never got into Santa. She was, however, all over the 'ghee.' It wasn't any particular 'ghee' that caught her fancy, it was every 'ghee,' whether real, artificial, cardboard, or painted on a lasagna pan. Our 'ghee' at home was locked in our family room, which kept the room smelling like Christmas and the tree safe from the cats. Of course, the cats weren't the real threat to the tree and everything on it. We were smart enough to place only ornaments we could stand to see used as a basketball within four feet of the concrete floor. This was good, because Dipity, like all toddlers and her father, looks with her hands. And there were just too many cool things on the tree: 'owmen,' an 'ouse,' several 'earts,' a 'baa baa,' and lots of 'bubs.' She would be out in the living room, and suddenly, remembering that the tree was in the family room, would sprint for the door yelling 'ghee.' It was pretty cool that she was so excited about it. For a month we had an easy and reliable way of bringing on a good mood.

This Saturday was the saddest day of the holiday season; it was the last day. The tree came down. Dipity was calm as the ornaments came down. She actually 'helped.' It was when I started to take the lights off the tree that the mood changed. She pointed at the electrical outlight where the lights had been plugged in and, in her best angst filled cry, belted out a series of 'ghees.' When I lifted the tree up in anticipation of moving it out ... well ... Initially I placed it in the back yard, but I had to move it out of sight. She was standing at the back door and saying, in a more subdued voice, "ghee." Actually, by this point it sounded a lot more like 'tee', or even 'treee.' It was sad. I suppose we should have taken it down when she was asleep, but that struck me as more traumatic. I'd hate to wake up and have something I loved just vanish.

Christmas didn't just vanish, though. We have rooms full of toys to let us know it was here. And more than one good story.

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