Only ... new! And improved! With more snow! And more swapping! Seriously. Last year there was no threat of death by steep snowy driveway. Which as the owner of the driveway and a lawyer, I found EXTREMELY comforting. This year, not so much. We got more than a dusting of snow during the party. Enough that I held my breath and chanted "Good Driveway Karma! Good Driveway Karma!" over and over again until every last person left. It seems to have worked. No one fell and I wasn't greeted by a marshal and a summons at my door this morning. I consider this a huge success and another point in favor of invoking karma when need be. For those of you that don't know, one of my law school ladies would chant "Good Parking Karma" over and over as she pulled into a parking lot and inevitably she'd get great parking spots. It was crazy, but I tried it and it worked! You can't invoke the Good Whatever Karma all of the time, but if you use it sparingly, it really does work. I now sound like some new age freak. I'm okay with it. The Good Driveway Karma might have also been helped along by the fact that I forgot to buy some wine. I'm going to assume that it was a fortuitous oversight and not a hostess mishap and move on!
So our swap is of the "Yankee Style" which means you can steal the gifts of the people who have gone before you. None of the Northerners seem to see the slight in the "Yankee" label, so sayeth this very amused Southerner. But whatever, it is great fun. Last year we only had one person loose her gift. Granted, she lost gifts three different times, but she was the only loser. Ironically, she is the only one who didn't lose a gift this year.
Last year's lack of serious swapping made it easy for me to photograph. This year, not so easy. I have forty-four pictures of people losing their gifts and taking another gift only to lose that gift too. I can't figure out who lost what. I know I missed a few picture opps which means that somehow thirteen people swapped gifts about fifty times. There were turns that took ten minutes because there was so much swapping and grabbing going on. It was bedlam.
I will admit to being one of the people who contributed to the bedlam.
= a diabolical sushi deprived pregnant woman on a mission
Or rather, a diabolical sushi deprived pregnant woman on a mission to corrupt others to do her bidding! In other words, I created of the Triumvirate of Evil. A triumvirate whose sole purpose was to ensure that its three members got the gifts they wanted when all was said and done. Some might say this wasn't very sporting. I say, pushaw! Cheaters never prosper, but schemers do!
In my defense, I was destined to have the present that I wanted. We were like star crossed lovers. Being preggers I can't have sushi. I LOVE sushi. The lack of sushi in my life makes me sad. And irritable. So, being a bitch, I declared all sushi banned from the party. Well someone was a smart ass and figure out a way around my declaration and the ban and my sushi deprived brain said MUST HAVE! Not only was the wrapping paper me, me, me. The book and the serving dish were too! Speaking of dishes, I again forgot to take a "before" food picture for BeFri, so I only have one of the carnage.
This year I wised up and used paper plates and cups. The china is sturdier and much prettier but the hand washing part is way suckier. I didn't have the pleasure of pain pills this year as an excuse to get my husband to do all of the dishes, so I made sure there were a lot less.
When all was said and done, a fun evening was had. I cleaned up and Cat reclaimed the living room as his personal domain.
My husband helped with the clean-up, but I still ended up going to bed hours after my bed time. In fact, I am so tired that I told my husband this morning that I was the tiredest person the WHOLE WIDE WORLD. And you know what he said? He said, "Baby, I am so sorry. Why don't we both leave work now and meet at home so I can rub your feet until you slide into blissful slumber." Actually that is not at all what he said. It was more like, "Dexter, tonight, 7pm, no excuses." Fucking Dexter. I love that show but it was getting too good. Each episode was giving me arrhythmia. I convinced Boo to wait until we had the final two episodes DVRd and could watch them at once. I figured it would be easier on my adrenal system, kind of shoot my adrenalin wad all at one time and be done with it. It was a great idea until now, when Dexter is DVRd and looming over my head. I'm totally going to have to take a nap.
Which I won't be able to do under my desk this afternoon (goddammit!) since we just had our office holiday lunch and people want to ... socialize. Unlike years past, no one seemed to throw a fit during this holiday lunch. In fact, I'll go out on a limb here and say that this was the best holiday lunch we've had thus far. There were several incidents of people trying to insulate the food and utensils from Mr. Smellypants and for the most part they were successful. He never coughed on the food or licked something and put it back. So yeah office lunch!
And, not apropos to anything else ... Funniest line of last evening: Why does A. have a Pooh hanging from her butt?