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December 26, 2006: Post

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It is tradition for my mom and my sisters and I to get up early the day after Christmas and hit the after-Christmas sales. So this morning the four of us met in the parking lot at the Target in Vacaville (thus conveniently avoiding any actual shopping mall), and before the sun had risen, we were thronging into the store with dozens of other people, determined to score great deals on all the holiday things we'll need for next year.

I found a few boxes of cards, and then picked up quite a nice selection of stocking stuffers for next year, and successfully avoided purchasing even a single roll of holiday wrapping paper (since we are currently swimming in it from a rather large wrap-purchasing fest during a similar post-holiday shopping trip a year or so earlier). Then, once my sisters and my mom were done in the holiday section, we meandered our way throughout the rest of the store, which meant that I managed to find parent-approved birthday presents for my niece and youngest nephew (whose birthdays are coming up in the next two months) and get some ideas for my mom's birthday (which is coming up in a few weeks).

A quick detour to a coffee shop for sustance for my mom and sisters, since apparently none of them got any breakfast before they joined me at the store (while I, on the other hand, had swung through a local bakery to snag a bagel and an extra large cup of life-giving caffeine to sustain me through the shopping mania), and then we headed off to the next store on our list - Joann Fabrics. There I avoided doing anything more than glancing briefly at anything related to yarn, and instead focused on picking up a few more stocking stuffers for various family members for next year.

We hit a few more stores after that one, but by then we were all getting hungry and the early wake-up had started to hit me, despite the large coffee I had gulped down earlier, and it was far too early for lunch, so we all decided to go home and crash for an hour or two and then get back together later. I tried very hard to take a short nap, which thrilled the cats to no end, but it is sometimes hard to sleep when you are being purred out so enthusiastically by several felines who think that 'napping' really means 'lying down and petting them'.

After lunch, Richard and I decided to hook up one of our new Christmas presents - an EyeToy Kinetic, and as we hooked it up and tried to try it out, we discovered a little problem. Amusingly, ever since we rearranged the furniture, we've noticed that the lighting in the room really isn't very good, but it wasn't until we tried to play with our new game that we finally broke down and took care of the situation. It didn't take long to go out and procure two inexpensive floor lamps - one of which even has a flexible reading light which will be perfect for my knitting - and after that, the game worked perfectly. Basically, it's a workout game, with a little camera, so that you see yourself on the screen, and the game can 'sense' where you are. You move around, trying to punch or kick or sweep objects off the screen, and it can track your movements and score you appropriately. There is even a program to set up a personal trainer, which will track your progress over twelve weeks and increase the intensity of your workouts as you improve.

I was busily ducking and dodging in front of the television, trying to protect a big blue orb from a bunch of little gold orbs by smacking at them when the phone rang, so after we both had a chance to do a basic workout with our new game, we inhaled a 'healthy' dinner of breakfast cereal and then picked up my little sister and her husband, and went off for an adults-only outing to see a movie - "Night at the Museum".

The movie, athough a bit predictable, was just what we needed. It's funny and entertaining, enough to make us laugh here and there, but not too complicated or intense, so that we could just sit back and have fun and not have to think too hard about it at all. We stopped for ice cream on the way home and sat in the store and chatted until we noticed they were starting to clean up and had turned off the 'Open' sign, so that was our cue to regretfully head back to the car and drive over to my parents' house and drop off my sister and brother-in-law, and then come home.

Tis the season for Holidailies

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