Best Christmas Gift Ever

My family celebrates Christmas in January. Mom’s decision to wrench the holiday from its December calendar square and push it a month was genius for our family because it’s very, very, very hard to get all nine adults and five kids together at Christmas proper, plus the post-Christmas sales make for economical shopping. We love it. Something to break up the mid-January freeze.

We’ve just returned from Farrell Christmas 2010 (in 2011), and the 24-hour holiday blitz was the best: peanut butter balls, white Russians, snuggies, wigs, guitar+ukelele duo to Elmo’s Duck Song … the fixings of a magical, memorable holiday.

My brother-in-law (J’s brother) has been joining us these past couple years, and this time he brought a SERIOUSLY AWESOME GIFT. A gift that just grabbed my nephew and enslaved him. A crane truck. Not just any old run-of-the-mill, push-it-and-it-goes, oh look, it’s-a-truck crane truck, but a take-it-apart-and-build-it-again-yourself crane truck with accompanying battery-operated screwdriver and bits of different sizes. My nephew, who will be four in May, grasped the power screwdriver, palmed the bits, and went to work. On the truck, on his sister, on the right elbow of my mother’s neighbor who had dropped in for a visit. My sister tells us the infatuation has continued through today. I hope, for M, he will remember this most excellent of Christmas gifts. I know I will.