Christmas In Kentucky, Chapter III: Chillaxin’

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Wherein I forego another six hours’ car travel, poke fun at a classic movie I watched 42 years ago, get my butt waxed in a board game (by my adorable niece!), and rediscover a great part of the holidays

On my arrival last night I was invited to my bro-in-law Pete’s family Christmas in Louisville today, three hours away. With great appreciation, I declined. I couldn’t see myself sitting in a car for another six hours round-trip.

Spent the day with Mom and Lady: shopping, wrapping presents, cooking, enjoying the day.  Watched TV for awhile in the evening. Flipped between the Seahawks-Niners game and  a showing of the movie “Oliver!” which Mom and I went to see 42 years ago. It held up okay, but somehow I kept thinking about what great Monty Python sketches it would all make.

Pete and adorable niece Nolia stopped by later in the evening to play a few games of Aggravation, a long-time family tradition. Except playing against my family is like how I imagine it would be playing against the Sopranos. All-out, full-on, take no prisoners.  Nolia seems to have acquired the family blood-lust that accompanies this game. That’s a good thing, I believe.

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Owensboro is the fourth largest city in Kentucky. It is located 32 miles southeast of Indiana, and has a population of 57,265.  Famous Owensboro-ians (?) include Johnny Depp, Florence Henderson (the mom on “The Brady Bunch’), and movie actor Tom Ewell (“The Seven-Year Itch”).

Bro-in-law Pete grew up in Owensboro. He and Mary and Nolia moved back here from Georgia in 2005. Dad and Mom made many visits here, and in 2008 bought a small house (dubbed “The Cottage”) three doors down from Pete and Mary’s place. They spent the winters here in ’08, ’09, and ’10. Last winter they remained in Minnesota due to Dad’s illness. This is our first Christmas without Dad, and Mom’s first time in Kentucky without him.

Christmas gets hectic and commercialized and somewhat obnoxious at times. But there’s one thing it’s always very good for. When you spend time with your loved ones this Christmas, let them know that you love them. It doesn’t need to be overt or gushy: quiet and unspoken is fine. But make sure to let them know. You’ll be glad later.

3 Comments on “Christmas In Kentucky, Chapter III: Chillaxin’”

  1. […] “only going to play till Tuesday.” It went a long time. And much like family games of Aggravation, it became […]

  2. […] I’m stunned at the ruthlessness that the game “Monopoly” reveals in my family. “Aggravation” is like “Candy Land” in […]

  3. tamyrad says:

    I only did one family get together this Christmas, that was at my Aunt Connie’s over near Sebeka, most of Dad’s side of the family was there. our first since the funeral and it was okay. We ate about a ton of the usual delicious goodies, played Apples to Apples, both a regular version and the Disney version. The regular version is much much better. There was an eight month old baby girl in attendance, which was a lot of fun, and a handful of kids and two teenagers, one the baby’s mamma and one my sixteen year old first cousin.( we sort of mixed up the generations in my family) I stayed to watch the feeding frenzy of my cousin’s kids opening packages, Do you know of this device called a ripstick? it reminds me of a cross between a unicycle and a is a skateboard with only two wheels. my forty something cousin bought it for her younger daughter and says she is going to master it herself ! Otherwise I stayed home and hid, chicken that I am. Joe wouldn’t go with me, but he is making a skating rink in my yard. My sister and her husband went off to Lincoln NB to spend Christmas with their grad student daughter. They had their traditional Christmas eve dinner of lefse and lutefisk, so I am totally okay with not being asked to tag along. I should have stopped at a grocery store on my way home from the party but I didn’t so my Christmas feasting was mostly sharp cheddar cheese and Kristian Regale. Not really all that bad as far as tasty treats go. I think I got Joe worried a little though.

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