This Christmas was unusual…even for the Soapbox family.
Missy* our eldest daughter is a nurse working in Victoria. She was scheduled to work over Christmas which meant that for the first time ever the Soapbox family was not going to be together on Christmas Day.
No problem we said, we’ll reschedule Christmas.
So, on Dec 10 at 5 pm Mr and Ms Soapbox, Missy, her little sister Mini, Missy’s boyfriend (let’s call him Mario) and Ziggy the dog converged under the Christmas tree to open presents.
Things got off to a shaky start when Ms Soapbox accidently broke the horns off Mario’s Krampus soap. Krampus is the horned anti-Santa of German legend who kidnaps bad children. Why he merits his own soap is beyond me. Mario was gracious about the whole thing saying he’d lather them back on. Good Mario.
Ms Soapbox modeled her Nasty Woman T shirt and Mr Soapbox demonstrated the correct way to use wooden cooking implements.
Missy and Mini both received adult colouring books. Mini’s came with an attaché case jammed with crayons, pastels and paints; Missy will have to make do with a packet of 8 pencil crayons. Thankfully they’re past the stage where every gift they got had to be exactly the same.
Ziggy was pleased with his bone but thought he looked silly in his red and white Christmas sweater.
We enjoyed our traditional Christmas Eve pizza and rounded off the evening with board games and wobbly snippets of Christmas carols curtesy of Mini who thinks O Little Monkey is a real Christmas carol no matter how many times we tell her it’s “donkey” not “monkey”.
Note to self: it’s rude to yell Bingo! when Mini and Mr Soapbox are playing Battleship and Mini sinks Mr Soapbox’s destroyer.
Further note to self: when playing Scrabble with Missy and Mario ensure Mario’s turn comes after Missy’s turn otherwise he’ll set Missy up for the triple word score every single time. Bad Mario.
The Soapbox Christmas was over in a heartbeat and we were just settling in for two weeks of post-Christmas relaxation when Missy slipped on the ice.
Within hours she was carted out of the house in a sling by four burley firemen. (The EMS crew called the fire department when it became obvious they couldn’t get the stretcher down the stairs without tipping Missy out). An undignified exit but Missy was beyond caring by this point.
The EMS crew rolled us into the stretcher queue at the hospital and we all bonded for a couple of hours waiting for a bed to become available. The doctors discharged Missy the next morning and she embarked on a series of X-rays and MRIs, doctor’s appointments and physio.
Eventually she hobbled back to Victoria to be examined by her doctor who said (surprise) she was not fit for work.
Which meant she could come home for Christmas.
So, she did and we celebrated Christmas all over again—Christmas Eve with board games and O Little Monkey and Christmas Day with tiny presents and a very large turkey.
And you know what, it was even lovelier the second time around.
From the Soapbox family to you and your family, we wish you a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and the very best for 2017!!!
*Missy, Mini, and Mario are not their real names but suit them to a tee.
Merry Christmas from a PEI fan.
Thank you Bunty! Merry Christmas to you and yours in PEI. We’re having a wonderfully laid back Christmas here, hope you are too.
I’ll have you know Ziggy enjoys wearing his Christmas sweater, and most clothes (he merely tolerated the dino costume for this Halloween). Look how he’s smiling for the camera! He’ll always come stick his head in the shirts if I hold them open for him, and wore that sweater without any fuss the whole night. The same cannot be said for other infrequent things such as his ear wash, eye drops, flea and tick medication, and the brush. He knows exactly what they are just by me holding them and he runs and hides, even if it’s just his head which is hidden.
It’s Christmas, I’ll concede this one to you Missy. Ziggy does look happy in his Christmas sweater…but then again he’s always insanely HAPPY when you’re around. It was nice to have you back home for Christmas. XX
I think Ziggy would do anything for you! Well except the ear wash, eye drops, etc.!
Lovely Christmas story! Merry Christmas to you and your family and a Prosperous New Year for the Soapbox Clan!
Thank you Linda. Merry Christmas to you and your family and those two goofy little people in cat suits!
Well, as they say in England, Happy Christmas to all the Soapboxes, human and canine, those in completely great shape and those who may be hobbling about!! Despite the alignment of Chanukah and Christmas this year, we’ve just come back from completing the traditional Jewish celebration of Christmas — a movie and Chinese food. We wish you all the best and a return to full health for Missy!!
Liane, I love your traditional Jewish celebration of Christmas, one of my favourite things to do with my daughters is to go to a movie, stopping for Chinese food on the way. Unfortunately we usually end up at the food court in the mall which means the food is super salty, but hey, it’s part of the experience. Wishing you and your family a happy Chanukah and a wonderful 2017. I get the feeling this is going to be a very interesting year!!!
Merry Christmas! I hope Missy is doing OK. Merry merry Christmas to your family. Ziggy looks adorable!
Thanks Joanna. Merry Christmas to you and your family and Ozzy. I chuckled at your comment about Ziggy looking adorable–I’m waiting for a picture of Ozzy all decked out in his winter regalia. 🙂
Susan, What a lot of fun (you’re recounting of Christmas, that is)! My very best New Year wishes to you, Roy, and all the members of your family. Frank
Thanks Frank. My younger daughter Mini says everyday is full of gold nuggets, we just have to recognize them when we find them. Missy’s accident turned into a gold nugget which played out very nicely for the entire family. Merry Christmas to you and your family!
I love the concept of the flock returning home for Christmas, whether it be one of them of all of them. Time and traditions shared with loved ones is the perfect way to round out the year and your yearly Christmas Story has become a big part of that. Merry Christmas to the whole clan and may you all have a prosperous New Year full of adventures.
Thank you Rose. I think of the Christmas blog as a little bit of fun I share with my family and friends. We were pleased to include Mario this year. Have a wonderful Christmas with your family. Lord knows you deserve it. I’m really looking forward to catching up with you in 2017.
Since it is the season of giving, here is a small gift for Missey. They rate snow tires and now they also impartially rate winter boots: http://www.ratemytreads.com/
On our farm we already had our solstice fire to bring back the sun (works every time! 😉 and today we tuck into our annual feast with our extended family. Something to note is that all the milk, eggs, chicken, and turkeys are still grown on western Canadian farms thanks to farmer-controlled marketing Boards. Given CETA and the lack of attention by the Alberta NDP, this will soon be a thing of the past.
For those of us west of the lake-head, all our wheat products, pasta, and almost all the beer still come from grain grown on prairie farms. For those of you east of Thunder Bay, now that the farmer-run Canadian Wheat Board has been killed, your bread and pasta may well be partly or wholly made with wheat from the Ukraine.
All the best to everyone in the New Year and keep climbing up on the soapbox Susan.
K: that’s a very informative site. Thanks. Missy is en route to Victoria as we speak, I’m sure she’ll check it out when she lands in God’s country (as my west coast relatives call it).
Great point about farmer-controlled marketing boards…tragic to see the lack of attention given to this issue. I need to look into this.
PS Thank you for bringing back the sun. We appreciate it!!!!
Merry Christmas Susan. The very best to you and your family in 2017
Thank you for allowing the wonderful conversation we had in 2016. I hope that my participation has been more positive than negative to everyone involved.
Carlos, I think your comments are thoughtful and perceptive. I especially appreciate the fact that if you disagree with someone else or (heaven forbid!) me you always do so respectfully. I wish you the very best for 2017 and look forward to hearing your views on everything we’re going to discuss in what promises to be a very interesting year!
I am confused. Are you a progressive lawyer or the Betty Crocker representative at the Calgary Chamber of Commerce? Your blogsite, your choice, of course.
Anonymous: Think of The Soapbox as NORAD, most of the time it’s scanning the horizon for threats, but at Christmas it lets its hair down and fires up the Santa tracker. ttps://www.google.ca/search?q=norad+canada+santa+tracker&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&gws_rd=cr&ei=e4xiWIHLD8Gs0gL0uLiQDA
Wonderful, frank and still looking at the silver lining in all our human endeavors and encounters – thanks Susan!!
Hope 2017 is more positively eventful for us all…
You’re welcome David. I look forward to watching you in the Legislature this spring. You always bring a measure of balance and perspective to the discussion. We need cool heads now more than ever.
Thank you for the good wishes Susan, and for illuminating the journey. May 2017 be a better year for everyone. Kind regards | LCA
You’re very welcome Leo. I’ve been following your posts on Twitter. Thank you for bringing so many important issues to light. As a good friend of mine says: “Onward into 2017”. (For whatever reason that always reminds me of Buzz Lightyear: “To the universe and beyond!”)
Muchisimas gracias amiga; you’re most kind – onwards, with passion & conviction I say. Abrazos gentiles 🙂 LCA
Happy New Year, Susan. Keep up the good work.
Much appreciated Don! And a Happy New Year to you as well.