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December 02, 2001: Nothing says Christmas like 'mew'

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It has been raining and windy and foggy and pretty much bleh on and off now for the past several days. On the one hand, it's always nice to get some precipitation in the winter so we're not subjected to dour threats of drought and water rationing next summer, but on the other hand driving in this kind of weather has never ranked high on my list of fun things to do. And last night it rained so hard that when we woke up this morning there was a lake in the backyard, and as we drove to church, we got to do a bit of hydroplaning across the surprise pond in the middle of the street.

The good thing, I suppose, is that I did get my tires replaced before the worst of the storms hit. When your steering wheel suddenly develops a really cool wobble, that means that maybe forgetting to get your tires rotated as often as you should was a bad idea, and that now it is time to get brand new ones because the old ones have worn down to the steel belt. Yes, I am a bad, bad person.

We braved the rain and wind and fog, however, to do the requisite annual holiday trip to the mall. Although I've been good and already done most of the Christmas shopping online (I love me some, oh yes I do!), I was getting antsy to get out of the house, but I didn't want to go all by myself. Luckily, I'm married to a man who actually likes going to malls on occasion. I figure this works out well, considering that I get a yen to go to a mall maybe two or three times a year, and usually only around the holidays because there is just something about Christmas that makes the mall so much more fun.

And then once we had presents (well, more presents at any rate), I got it into my head that we really needed to wrap them. Last night Richard escaped to go hang out with EvilPheemy, and I stayed home and alternated between running upstairs to browse through the 70+ journals on the Holidailies ring, and camping out on the floor downstairs having happy fun with gift wrap and cats.

Wrapping presents in my house is an ordeal, and has always been so ever since I was claimed by Rebecca. As the numbers climbed slowly to the current level (that would be 7, for those of you who haven't checked out my Who Am I page) it has become even more of a hassle.

Perhaps other cats aren't nearly as 'helpful', but in our house, these are the rules. Wrapping paper must be unrolled, attacked, chewed, shredded, sat on, but most importantly, it should never actually be allowed to *wrap* anything, at least not easily. Because tape makes a funny noise when it comes off the roll, and Sebastian doesn't like the noise, he must sit beside me and make gagging faces to make sure that I am well aware of how much he doesn't like the noise. Empty plastic bags must immediately be pounced into, any shreds of paper must be destroyed, and pens must be quickly and silently escorted away into a different dimension, the opening of which is located either underneath either the refrigerator, or behind heaviest piece of furniture in the house - whichever is more awkward to move. And ribbon…well, let's just say that I have learned that ribbon is evil and should never enter this house and leave it at that, shall we? You don't want to know what ribbon looks like…er…second-hand, in other words.

Today we finished the great wrapping ordeal. The cats were in major nap mode - or perhaps they were simply scared away by the fact that Richard had put a Jingle Cats CD on - so we were able to wrap relatively unmolested. After all that wrapping, and since the soggiest part of the storm seemed to have finally worn itself out, we decided to try for our tree, even going so far as to drive out to the local tree farm. Unfortunately, they'd closed for the evening, so we must wait til next weekend to introduce the new house to its first infusion of tree sap and pine needles. Still, with the stack of wrapped presents in the living room, holiday music filling the air, peppermint candy in our hot cocoa, and of course the traditional dead rubber pig displayed prominently on top of the TV (don't ask), it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

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