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Christmas
santa
thwack
Ok, I guess it's time to write...

Monday, I think it was, my brother called from Boston and asked for a favor... He had gotten our parents something on DVD for Christmas but then he realized we don't have a DVD player here. So he figured since they're so cheap, he'd get that too. But since he wouldn't be in town for Christmas this year, he would have to ship it, and he thought it would be better if I went out and got one and wrapped it, and he'd pay me back.

So, Tuesday I did that. I tried Kmart first - nothing left. Then at Circuit City I found a Magnavox model I saw on their site that seemed good to me, but I wanted to see what else there was first. They also had 2 cheap models by brands I hadn't heard of that lacked even basic features, and then several models well above the Magnavox that were both too expensive and overkill for my parents' simple TV setup. I ran over to Best Buy at tenthz's suggestion but their selection was worse than CC's and prices were higher (at least on the Magnavox of the same model). So I went back to CC and got the Magnavox and threw in a cheap S-Video cable since I knew it didn't come with one, but I knew their TV would support it.

Wednesday my other brother's family came over for traditional Lasagna dinner. He walked in the door carrying a present, handed it to Mom and said she had to open it tonight. She said she was pretty sure she knew what it was. Looking at its shape and size, I feared that I knew what it was as well, because I had wrapped a box that shape and size just the night before. After we ate, she opened it, and wouldn't you know, it was the SAME Magnavox DVD Player that I had picked out the day before. Too weird. I guess my brothers need to communicate a little better. :)

So we hooked it up and watched the "Year in Review" DVD my brother had made out of home videos of his family. Pretty cool, but lose the transitions! LOL... he must have wasted a good 5 minutes of the video on the stupid transitions. Annoying. He didn't go overboard trying to show off the editing software though - he just used the same transition every time and for some of the cuts (like a simple 1-word title) it just took way too long. Well, live and learn.

Then after they left, Mom, Dad and I went to church for the candlelight service, which is our only church visit each year (except for Dad, who sings in the choir). One of the pastors from previous years had left and the other has been having heart problems so she isn't able to attend, so basically the service was led by various members of the choir. The service is so similar from year to year though, they had no problems keeping it the same. Oh, also the choir director and organist ended their marriage, so she left and he took up her directing role in addition to continuing to play the organ. Quite a feat!

Oh, and everyone sang "Hark, the herald angels sing." (People who attended Bob & Diane's Christmas party will know what that's about. :) Bob was right!)

Thursday, Christmas Day, there were no children to wake up the house. But we got up early anyway so we could drive down and be with my sister's family for the day. First, we opened a few presents between ourselves. Mom got Dad a new office chair for his computer desk - he had been using an old wooden kitchen chair. Dad got Mom her first digital camera. And "Santa" got me a new Remington shaver. Yay! Then we went down to Naples for the day. I helped Spencer build the ship for his Takanuva Bionicle and beat Elizabeth twice on their new electronic dart board. We ate lunch and hung out in the mess that is Christmas, then headed back home to rescue the dogs. Mom called family everywhere to wish them a Merry Christmas. She told Rick about the twin DVD players and he said they could have me return the one he bought and get them some movies instead. But they decided to just give the extra player to me instead since I don't have one, and they don't really watch movies anyway. So, cool! I picked out what ended up being my own present. hehe... Glad I picked a good one. :)

Friday my brother's and sister's families came here to open more presents and have our traditional Ruben sandwiches for lunch. But I have mine without the "Ruben". :) Just the meat and toasted bread for me, thanks. Sauerkraut, cheese and salad dressing = vomit. Even if I did like those things, I wouldn't eat it because of the messiness and work:food ratio. So anyway, the kids made another Christmas mess opening their presents here. Andy brought over a "Deleted Scenes" DVD with some video that somehow got lost in the final cut of the home movies he gave us yesterday. Then before long he and his family went home, but my sister's family stayed here because...

Later that night, we went to the Amerks hockey game at Blue Cross Arena, where Spencer got to take the ice with his junior hockey team between the 1st and 2nd periods. They played the Spongebob Squarepants theme as they came on - cute. :) I got a few photos and videos, posted here temporarily. He was in red jersey #2. He's the one dashing for the door alone near the end of the second video. :) Apparently he scored a goal too, but I didn't see it. Yay, Spencer! And the Amerks won 4-2. Yay, Amerks! I hadn't been to the Blue Cross Arena in a long time - that place is nice now.

So that's it for my Christmas I guess. Time to go walk the dogs.

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Dominic got the same Bionicle :D He and Rob put it together this weekend.

Cool! I love the ship's design... they clearly have some clever engineers having fun designing those things, with the 3 feet that extend or hide at the flick of a single switch. :)

I had a bit of a delay in building Spencer's, though, because I couldn't find some pieces. I tried to go on without them and build other parts that didn't depend on them, then eventually we found out that Elizabeth had grabbed two pieces right when Spencer opened the box (before I got there) and played with them herself, then forgot and left them hiding under a newspaper on the other end of the table. :-P

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