The Captain and I have been together for three total Christmases now, but this was our first official one as an engaged couple and the first that I did not spend with my family. So it was definitely different, but not bad. It made me realize and appreciate the holidays even more than usual and it was a taste of what the future with The Captain and future younglings will hold.
My family left for my hometown of Lakeview on Christmas Eve and I felt left out right away. I’ll admit that part of me felt a childish guilt for not being there, for not going, for being stuck in Reno. I didn’t quite know what to do with myself since for most of the day I was just at home with The Captain and not driving for hours or chatting with relatives. To be honest, we just sat around—he played Destiny and I watched Tiny House Hunters. So, not really that festive.
Christmas Eve night we went over to his grandparents’ house to celebrate with his family. We’ve had a cold, snowy winter for once and so there was a lot of white on the ground, the air was brisk, and The Captain chose to be an ass about it and throw snowballs in my direction. I despise snowballs with every fiber of my being. We were greeted by his family and spent some time chatting and hanging out. His mom’s boyfriend invited over his kids and so we talked about school and phones and working retail. I played a lot of Bejeweled in between everything.
We had a super delicious dinner of salad, rolls, mashed potatoes, homemade noodles, turkey, vegetables, and pie for desert. That and all the Dr. Pepper I could drink. There was such a homey feeling and I enjoyed the warmth from the fireplace. It wasn’t Christmas Eve with my family, but everyone has their different traditions and habits. For example, my cousins and I do ‘Secret Santa’ type presents and we exchange those on Christmas Eve. This year was homemade type things and I missed out on seeing my sister get a ‘handmade’ gift card holder (which was a gift card screwed into a block of wood. I love my family).
We spent some time chatting but came home to take care of B’s kitty, Mika, and to prepare for an earlier-than-normal morning the next day. We decided to exchange our own presents in private—and I think that he wanted to make me feel better about not opening any presents on Christmas Eve. I waited with baited breath as he opened up his: a shirt that says ‘I have issues’ with Deadpool pawing through a box of ‘comiks.’ We’d been looking for the shirt in his size forever when I just found it on Amazon and thought it would be perfect.
For my present The Captain took orders and didn’t have to do much work. I’ve been wanting to get super-organized for a while now and found the perfect planner online (on sale!) so I just had The Captain pay for it and didn’t open the box when it arrived. I’ll probably give a review after I’ve had some time to use it, but right now it’s almost so beautiful I don’t want to dirty it up with my scrawl.
Christmas morning brought more snow to Reno. The Captain and I went back to his grandparents for breakfast and presents, and he threw even more snowballs in my direction. We watched the Disney parade while breakfast sizzled away in the kitchen. Then we dined on egg casserole, sausage, and toast. After eating, we opened up presents and I once again felt amazed by The Captain’s family. It stuns me at how accepting they are of me and how, even though we aren’t married yet, I feel like part of their family as well. The gifts were pretty useful. I got a lot of things for my car, some things for the house, a coloring book and new pencils, and lots of treats.
I helped with the dishes and ran to my mom’s house to grab my secret gift from Santa (Game of Thrones Season 3) before going back to help with dinner. The original plans of the day were to go ice-skating up at a ski resort, but those got cancelled and we threw together a Christmas dinner in three hours. It was great: more salad, turkey, mashed potatoes, rolls, stuffing, yum! The Captain made his bacon gravy and I enjoyed every bite of greatness.
We relaxed, chatted, and watched Buying Hawaii—which has convinced me that I would not do well in that centipede and spider-filled state. We came home and I realized that despite spending actual Christmas doing Christmas-type things it didn’t quite feel like the holidays for me. It’s probably because this is my first year not doing my traditional type things and not being with my family, but it just seemed unreal. Still does actually.
My family came back from Lakeview and we had a little dinner and present opening together. I enjoyed seeing the others opening the gifts and then opened mine.
Here is where I will be completely honest and probably alienate all future attempts to give me things. I can be quite picky when it comes to what I like or don’t. That’s why, for the past couple years, I’ve made explicit lists on Amazon or with the locations of where what I would like can be found. However I feel greedy when I create these lists and only send them to a handful (if that) of people because everything I like goes on the list. There are over 100 fiction novels on there as an example. So when someone who has the list goes off of it there are no promises on whether I will or won’t like the thing, and sometimes what I think I will like is very different from what it seems like online.
I was given one of the things I had asked for—a heart rate monitor for fitness—but it was not what I expected. For one, there was a strap that had to be worn under the chest to accurately do it instead of just wearing a wrist band. For another, even though I loved it I had a hard time picturing myself realistically using it. The other gift—off the list—was a spiral vegetable slicer. Unfortunately my lack of enthusiasm for it was probably evident from the beginning, but I tried to think of the upside. I could make noodles out of vegetables and other type things, but did I ever really do that in the first place? Then there was the issue of no available space in the House’s kitchen. So, I had to ask for them to be sent back, and I’ll either get cash or something else in exchange. Do I feel terrible? Absolutely. Is it better to be honest then let things gather dust and waste space? Maybe.
We finished up our Christmas at my godmother’s where we ate lasagna and salad, drank wine, and opened yet more presents. I received an ULTA gift card, a book, an ornament, a beautiful scarf, and a First Lines of Literature mug. It was a nice finish to the holidays—which seemed longer than usual this year.
I’ll say that my first official Christmas with The Captain was different, but good. I enjoyed spending time with his family, my family, and having the House to ourselves for a couple of days. I’ll even begrudgingly say that I liked the snow. For a somewhat less-than-amazing year this was a decent finish and I’ll be glad to send-off 2015 and say hello to 2016.
Hope that everyone’s holidays were happy and that you got everything you wished for or needed.