Corby, my good kitty.
For the first time since Grandpa’s death, my aunt and grandmother picked apples from the orchard and gave a bushel to my mother. They were baked into our Christmas pies and turned out to be amazing. How I miss, miss, miss that man. It was so touching to know that my family was able to carry on an aspect of his legend.
Mom made a simple but delicious honey butter for the rolls that had me filling up on bread. She spent all of this time on cranberry something-or-other, homemade stuffing and all that, and I was like, “Chris pass me the rolls!” about five times during dinner.
Dutbutt (The Duchess) and Gigi were presented with various toys that rolled and squeaked, which drove them nuts with excitement.
My Christmas loot was shocking, as I hadn’t anticipated being treated like ‘one of the kids’ this year. I got a bag filled with comfort clothes: those ultra-fuzzy pajama pants that feel like fluffed fleece, silky fuzzy socks, a scarf laced with silver that ranges from grey to black and a wonderfully, ridiculously Russian faux-fur hat with ear flaps.
It’s a newer tradition, to get me a big fuzzy hat every year. I wear them indoors a lot, for my own happiness, and it makes others laugh in the process. When I lifted it out from the box Gigi saw it as an attractive stuffed animal intended for her and she tried to take it from me.
Another present, perhaps worthy of the eye-roll, was an imported Tamagotchi from Japan. Remember those little egg-shaped toys that had a virtual pet on the screen? You had to feed it, play with it and clean its shit or it would die? Well, Japan never overcame the craze and now they make fancy ones with color displays. I got the special ‘PinkxGold Tamagotchi iD’ and have been carrying it around with me, taking care of it.
There was a time when my parents were in rocky territory and Dad’s mom insisted that a ‘fancy bottle of perfume’ would make everything okay. Being a senior citizen of different times, she naturally recommended an older lady scent: White Diamonds by Elizabeth Taylor. Ever since then, when special occasions arise, Dad has presented us with that perfume because no one has the heart to correct the situation by coming forward and admitting that White Diamonds is, simply, awful.
I shot my mother a knowing glance and thanked Dad for the scented lotion. Then I turned around and re-gifted it to my boyfriend’s mother – it might actually mask the smell of her cigarettes! Mom made sure to slip Britney’s new bottles, Elizabeth Arden scents, into my pile of goodies. She knows I like the good stuff.
Speaking of good stuff, there is a new bakery in Owosso that is negotiating for recipes from a business that called it quits years ago. It seems that many gems from White’s Bakery are coming back to this new place, including my family’s favorite. The extinction of ‘The Triangle’ was always such a shame in my father’s eyes; I’m so glad to hear the news of something classic being resurrected in time for Dad to experience again.
I have to admit: it was the sort of feel-good harvest that made me want to curl up in my family’s home, holding on to all of my toys in a greedy clasping hug and just smile, forever.