I remember very clearly the moment Maria came up with her idea.
It was a Christmas morning, Tom, myself, and whichever of our adult children and their spouses were home that year had finished our Christmas morning brunch and were sitting around the living room, where we'd spent the last hour or so opening gifts in the traditional way we'd done since my children were young - going in a circle, each person opening a gift at a time.
After the last person had opened their last gift, Maria said, "Can we not do this anymore? Can we stop giving Christmas presents from now on?"
Rather than throwing a wet blanket on the moment, Maria's suggestion was warmly welcomed. We all agreed that the chore of trying figure out what gifts to buy for all our adult relatives, then having to run around and buy them brought more physical, mental and financial stress than joy to the season. In fact I'd made the same suggestion to my parents and adult siblings the first Christmas after Tom and I were married and I still recall my brother Joe's enthusiastic response: "Now that's the best G-D idea anybody's ever come up with around here!"
I've since observed that there are two camps in the world: To the first belong those who love Christmas gifting; to the second belong those who don't. I believe my family members are the only people in the world who belong to the second camp.
Now I should clarify here that I'm talking strictly about the exchange of Christmas gifts among adults; of course I buy a few toys for my grand babies.
But though my family members are not Christmas gifters, we are most definitely Christmas feasters, and the feasting that began on Christmas Eve (see yesterday's post),
Then the youngsters settled in for an afternoon of Star Wars marathoning in preparation for seeing the newest Star Wars movie, "The Force Awakens". (I might have to see that one myself).
So we hauled ourselves up and headed out for Christmas Dinner at the Iron Chef Japanese Steak House in Pickerington,