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I am playing hooky from Christmas decorating to blog.  My excuse is that my job this year is decorating the Christmas branch (my family doesn’t do a Christmas tree, but we have to have somewhere to hang all the gorgeous antique glass Christmas ornaments we inherited from my grandmother), and I can’t start on that until Boy-O finishes securing it (he’s the only one at home right now who’s tall enough to reach the top hook).  I’m also taking the opportunity to sit still for a little while, since my asthma is acting up, and while I have taken my medication, it’s taking its time working.  I’m hoping that my siblings won’t notice how egregiously I’m shirking until after I hit Publish.  😀

I’ve been getting all these little Christmas gifts the last few days.  It’s been a lot of fun.  First there was the gift card to Hobby Lobby from my boss.  She told me that she googled “best place to buy yarn in Dayton” and the first result that came up was Hobby Lobby, which I think is very funny.  I also think it’s so sweet that she wanted to make sure she got me the very best (can you tell I kinda love her?).  And, well, while there are some nice yarns at Hobby Lobby, I definitely wouldn’t have picked them as the best place to buy yarn in Dayton!  But I’ll be able to put that gift card to good use regardless.

Wednesday I went to swing dancing, where I got two presents.  Mr. Zoot had found packets of fake snow for sale at the grocery store, and bought several packets with visions of awesome April Fools pranks.  It’s this white powder.  You put a tiny bit in a cup with maybe a quarter cup of water and it swells up like magic into this fascinating white stuff that does look an awful lot like snow.  I found it rather mesmerizing.  It just had this interesting texture.  I started out just poking at it in the cup, and then quickly progressed to sprinkling it over various people while singing “You’re dreaming of a white Christmas!” and “Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!” This then progressed to stealth sprinkling (for some reason some people didn’t want to be constantly fake-snowed upon) which was a whole other kind of fun, and all in all I enjoyed myself entirely too much.  It was great.  And then at the end of the night Mr. Zoot gave me a packet of fake snow for my very own, which was wonderful!

The second present on Wednesday was that we had a visiting Really Good Guy at dancing.  He used to live in Dayton, and taught the people who taught me how to dance.  I had danced with him once before on a previous visit, and enjoyed it very much.  This time, I managed to grab a dance with him to my favorite song, and it really was a very good dance!  The guy’s not only an excellent lead, but is very playful and musical in his dancing, which I love, and leaves room for his follow to play too, which is even better.  However, the present wasn’t the dance.  The present was that as we started dancing, after we introduced ourselves to each other, he said, “You’re a really good dancer!  Where have you danced?!” I told him mostly just in Dayton, and we danced a little more, and then he exclaimed again, like he just couldn’t help himself, “Wow, you’re really, really good!” And shoot.  After that how can a dance not be wonderful?  It wasn’t just the compliment, it was that he was so sincere.  He even came to talk to me when I was getting into my car at the end of the night, and when I thanked him for the dance, said very earnestly, “No, thank you!” It was very fun.

And then last night we had our annual Catholic Life Christmas Bash with the White Elephant Gift Exchange.  This is always a good time.  Last year I came home with a live lobster.  This year I drew the very last number.  As I watched people examine the presents and steal presents, there was one large, flat present that people kept fingering, saying, “Oh, I know what that is!” and choosing something else.  Of course, it was the last present left when my turn came.  I figured it was something I probably didn’t want, but had to find out what it was.  To my surprise, when I felt it I instantly recognized it as an ironing board!  The thing that was at the top of my Christmas Wish List this year!  I squealed, grabbed it, and tore the wrapping off.  It was an ironing board!  I was thrilled.  There may or may not be pictures of me clutching the board to myself and grinning like a mad fiend.  Maybe.

I haven’t gotten a chance to give many presents yet this year.  I’m still knitting like crazy, and I think there’s a distinct possibly that I might, just might, get them all done in time!  Last night I made the cutest little pair of white flannel bloomers for Fleur’s Christmas doll, and today I finally gave Mom her Queen Anne’s Lace shawl, all blocked and amazingly gorgeous.  All stretched out, it’s bigger than Rosie’s Queen sized bed, and so open it looks like the finest, silkiest cobweb you’ve ever seen.  Tomorrow morning I’ll get to give the first of my gifts.  I can’t wait!

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