All That Jazz

It’s over.

The tree is down. The inside lights are mostly down. I left the winter scene atop the bookshelf because it’s one of my favorites. The outside light are still up because it’s colder than Hell out there.

In Hell, Norway it’s currently 0C. It’s -9C with a windchill of -15 here.

See? Colder than Hell.

My last posting was The Daily Elf on December 21st. You see, my parents arrived on the 22nd and the blog got put on hold. It really doesn’t seem like a week has passed since we were opening gifts. For their arrival, we got a giant refigerator box, wrapped it in wrapping paper, and stuck a bow on it. Shortly before my parents got here we sent the boys to DW’s mom’s house. When my parents got here, we had the box in the living room by the tree and in it my parents went. Then the boys came home and unwrapped them.

Seriously, if you are in need of a smile, go watch the short video. The boys had no idea what they were were unwrapping.

Bang was stuck to my mother all week long. Every chance he got he was snuggling her.

We got to do some stuff while they were here, though certainly not all that we wanted. They got to go ice skating with the boys. Or at least my dad did. My mom has a tendency to break her ankles, so we kept her off the ice. She got to watch them, though. They got to see Bang sing with his church choir friends at Christmas Eve mass. They got to open presents with two three very excited boys. DW’s mom and stepdad joined us and we had a big unwrapping fest. We enjoyed a big Christmas turkey that my parents brought with them. They made their traditional trip to Baddeck. They never come to Cape Breton without going to Baddeck. We also took them candlepin bowling. Bowling in Canada is a little different than it’s American cousin. The pins are tall and skinny and the balls are the size of softballs and you get three rolls. The 6 year old won both games.

My brother-in-law and his family arrived Boxing Day (that’s the day after Christmas). The boys love playing with their cousins. There were 12 people in our house! I would call it a happy chaos.

The night before Nana and Pop Pop (my parents) left for their 1100 mile drive home, Crash and Bang said good bye to them. Bang quickly gave them hugs and tried to hurry to the basement. When I stopped him I could see his eyes get watery and his lip quiver and suddenly he couldn’t hold it in any more. He sat hugging his grandmother with tears flowing and heaving sobs. He managed to bring tears to a few eyes that evening. His only consolation was that he could call them via Facetime. And he has done so every day. Even to read them a story at bedtime.

When the kids woke last Friday morning, my parents had already left. DW’s brother and his family left around noon. Bang suited up and was ready to leave with them because they were stopping at McDonalds for lunch. Suddenly we had gone from a 12 person house to 4. It was strangely quiet. I wanted the noise back. The noise meant the holidays weren’t over. The noise meant family. Like Seuss said, “It’s not what’s under the tree that matters, it’s who’s around it.”

Our family may have left, but the New Year is here, now. Hello 2018. Time to get back to our version of normal. The tree is down. The inside lights are are down. The decorations are down. The elves, Woody and Elfis, are back at the North Pole thinking of new ways to cause mischief. Christmas is packed away for another year.

However, I still have Christmas spirit, joy, and all that jazz in my heart.

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The Daily Elf: December 21st

They were hungry for sweets today. Probably because it’s Nana’s birthday and she’s not here (yet) to have cake and ice cream. So this morning we found Woody and Elfis in the bag of chocolate chips.

Fortunately, they are smart little elves and left a few set aside for our chocolate chip pancakes.

The Daily Elf: December 20th

They were up to no good, again. As predicted, the closer to Christmas we get, the more trouble they like to cause. This time they were vandals.

They graffitied the boys school pictures! They made Crash a devil and Bang a pirate…

Then while we were at school, Guppie (DW’s Dad) got a doodle upgrade as well.

The Daily Elf: December 19th

Less than a week away…

Our Christmas concerts are over (more on that later).

Woody and Elfis, like most days, spent the day hanging out. Today they were literally hanging out. They set up a zipline and had some fun in the kitchen zipping back and forth. They performed a few tricks for us, too.

The Daily Elf: December 18th

The war was on today…

Over a pair of aces, of course. The best kind of war. When we woke this morning we found the game in progress. Woody had just flipped his card over to reveal his ace.

The next time we saw them, they had laid their three cards down. Elfis flipped a 7, but Woody hadn’t flipped his fourth card over, yet. We didn’t know who was going to win!

This evening we saw them and it appears Elfis won the war as Woody had a four. Poor Woody lost his ace in that battle. You can see he wasn’t too happy about it, either. He threw a temper tantrum! While we got to see who won the Battle of the Aces, we don’t know who won the war.

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The Daily Elf: December 17th

We made a mistake.

We all knew what the result would be.

This morning our prediction was spot on.

You see, I bought some shortbread cookies loaded with green icing and sprinkles. They were for dessert after supper. Our mistake? We opened them in front of Woody and Elfis. This morning we found the two of them in the cupboard enjoying the sweet treats. Fortunately, they just shared a cookie. They split one between them. They went halvsies.

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The Daily Elf: December 15th

If you recall two days ago, Elfis captured Woody under a glass and held him trapped all day. Woody said he’d have his revenge. He is true to his little elf word.

We woke this morning to see a trap set and Woody waiting patiently under the tree for his prey. He used a candy cande and white chocolate peppermint M&M’s for bait. Elves are suckers for peppermint.

Elfis hung out on the elf that Bang drew and colored and taped to the wall. His holder is meant for cookies Christmas Eve for when the Jolly Elf stops by. From here Elfis could clearly see his intended target. However, this morning, it worked as a perfect perch for Elfis.

*You can just make out Little Snowball at floor level. He’s to hold Santa’s milk.

Elfis’s will power began to break down through the day. When we returned home from school, Woody hadn’t caught him yet. However, Elfis was only feet away from the sweet treats. He was eyeing them long and hard while Woody continued to lay and wait.

After spending all day staring at the delicious treats, Elfis apparently decided that being caught was worth the sacrifice for a candy cane and peppermint M&M’s. I agree, too. I would have been caught LONG before now. Bang was in the kitchen when he heard the bowl come crashing down and he came running. Naturally, DW and I didn’t see them move as we were each playing a game on our phone (DW was crushing candy and I was finding words in my soup).

With just 10 sleeps left, I hope they start playing nicer. I doubt Santa will be impressed that they are setting traps for one another. Or perhaps, being a right jolly old elf himself, he finds it quite amusing.

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The Daily Elf: December 13th

Up to no good again…

This time it was just Elfis being bad. I’m still not sure how he tricked Woody into getting in the glass. Woody is one gullible elf. Or as we like to say in our house… He’s S-M-R-T smart. (bonus points if anyone knows the reference)

They also delivered a nice and naughty list that only they have control over. We don’t even know where the markers are that they use on it. I appreciate Elfis’s honesty as he put himself on the naughty list for his devious trick. I hope he makes it back on the nice list tomorrow. I hope Woody doesn’t try to retalliate.

He probably will…

The 6 Christmas Gifts We All Crave and My Wife Is Getting

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The Twelve Days of Christmas are upon us… or, at least, there just 12 sleeps left until the big morning. I won’t be getting DW a partridge in a pear tree. Nor will she get 12 lords-a-leaping. She has me and I do enough leaping for one family. Nor will she get fiiiiiiiiive gooooolden riiiiings (you just sang it, didn’t you?) I’m not made of that kind of money or bitcoin. We could use 10 maids-a-milking, though. We go through a lot of milk and at $6.50 a gallon (3.785 liters) it gets expensive. I searched Amazon, but the best I could find to a milking maid was this thing for $165.99. There’s no cow or milking happening here. If I got this 17″ monstrosity for her, I know exactly where she’d shove it… Right up my pasture.

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This year I’m going with practical gifts. Gifts that can be used over and over. The gifts that keep on giving.

1. Like this beautiful screen viewer for when you need it a bit darker to see that screen. When kids see this on Mom they’ll know not to bother her, she’s busy crushing her candy. I bet it’s good for making it dark enough to take a nap, too. Thirdly, you can’t see all the weird looks this thing will attract. It’s going to be all the rage next year! I don’t recommend wearing while driving.

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2. Who doesn’t like music? Who doesn’t like warm feet? This gift has them both covered. I figure four pair walking around the house with four different songs playing would be spectacular! We’ll get our 10,000 steps a day easy! I really dig the bonus head strap so you wear them like headphones. That’ll smell pleasant in the summertime.

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3. This next doozy has all kinds of useful uses. It can do anything from kill small game should you become lost in the hunger games to feeding your children and even correcting their heathen-like behaviour. I’m guessing it works on husbands just as well, so I’ll be sure to stay out of range…

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4. *No explanation needed…

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5. Have you ever cut up fruit and veggies and thought… hmmm, I wonder how fresh this is? All the stuff that gets lost in the fridge and has been in there since God was a baby. This really cool, super high tech knife will tell you just how fresh or how rotten your food is. It’ll be up to you whether you eat it or not.

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6. Last but not least is my favorite gift on this list, I love snuggling in the winter time by a lit Christmas tree with a glass #4 in one hand and DW’s hand in my other. I can’t wait to see her expression when she opens this one! It’s like a mommy/daddy time out shirt. Wherever we go, we go together. Whatever we do, we do together. And a fart could kill us both.

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Are there any exotic and fun gifts you plan to get your significant other? Let me know below. Also, don’t forget to come find and follow me on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook!

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