we left dallas for tyler tuesday evening. oliver napped on the way and then was totally wound up for a couple of hours once we got there. putting him down to bed reminded me of the good old days. i think it was after 1am (and 2 hours of trying) before he was out. and then he was up around 6am the following morning.
xmas eve day turned out to be much busier than i had anticipated. our first stop was the broadway square mall for a photo with santa. thankfully, the line was super snappy quick. last year, it was somewhere between one and two hours, even though there were not all that many people in front of us. it happened so fast, oliver didn't even know what was going on when i popped him down on santa's lap. teardrops the size of marbles immediately began tumbling down his cheeks and he held on to my hand for dear life. i had them crop me out and they were merciful with two quick snaps of the shutter. the quality of the photo was sucky.
we dropped into old navy to get a gift card for my niece's 17th birthday a week later and then to went to the gap because brian had failed to pack clean underpants. i found three (differently colored) pairs of cords on sale. they had unfortunate bell bottoms. which i'm hoping the tailor can fix. once i'm actually able to fit in them again.
then we drove to the movie theater so i could get gift certificates for my niece and nephew. i was not expecting them to have sold out, but they had. we stopped by drug emporium to luxuriate in the health food section and so oliver could continue napping in the car. we stopped by the drive thru at starbucks for lattes and so oliver could continue napping in the car.
i suppose we must've returned home for a bit and it was at that point that oliver refused to walk into the house. you see, it took us ages to break him of wanting to be carried all the time and this was back when we were still rather embroiled in that battle. we left him sitting on the sidewalk and he didn't care less that we had supposedly gone completely away (we were still watching through the glass door and i was totally worried the neighbors were sitting around shunning us and calling the cops). after close to 10 minutes, i sent my dad out there to see if he could persuade him to come in and, of course, he did.
then left again to take oliver to macon park. all he wanted to do was swing, but we broke him away for a few minutes to play on the structure. he saw a dark-skinned boy and started calling him "azmer". departing was a tragedy.
we drove back over to the movie theater, because they had been kind enough to pretend it was 2001 and left their fax machine hooked up to the phone line so i couldn't call to ask, and i was pleased to find the new shipment of certificates had arrived.
we finally made it back home. again.
after eating the traditional vegetarian swedish meatballs for dinner, we let oliver open up his xmas pajamas and he refused to be still for a photo.
here's what he got without it being blurry.
this is brian saying he looks fat after dinner.
since the family tends to go to the 7pm service and since oliver's bedtime is at 8pm, this was the first year i know of that i did not attend a xmas eve candlelight service. not that i'm religious, mind you. i just enjoy a good candle and a handful of carols. we considered taking a leisurely drive to look at some xmas lights, but were exhausted. so that tradition fell by the wayside as well.
oliver was rather displeased by bedtime that night. despite his previous joy found by walking around with strings of zotz from the entire case of zotz that my sister showed up with that evening, with which i proceeded to rot my teeth and innards on for another week.
the following morning, we rose at a decent hour and casually worked our way through oliver's stocking and gifts from us before the arrival of my sister's family.
brian opened his stocking and then went to sleep on the couch. because he is always trying to sleep. even on xmas morning. as mentioned previously, we have a new present-reduction manifesto, so we didn't get presents for each other this year unless it was a family gift. the family got an annual pass to the dallas arboretum and npr's box of puzzle/question cards for road trips, or something like that. despite having had a conversation over thanksgiving with both of my parents during which i was told some gifts had already been purchased for me, but no more would be purchased, brian and i received gifts from my parents along with looks of insanity that the agreement had never been agreed to and we felt like assholes for having no gifts for them.
oliver received this village people dress up doll from my sister.
as usual, we ate a late breakfast and then some of us spent the day being useless in our pajamas. my grandparents showed up somewhere in there for xmas lupper. oliver did not want to go down for a nap. nor did he want to let go of the miniature basketball. he finally collapsed.
it's been so long, i've actually had my 35mm prints back for ages...