But only on a trial basis.
On Christmas morning I woke up to an alarm, which is very, very sad. In all my other years I have woken up much earlier, usually around the 7am range, but waking up with your little sisters crawling all over you, just dying with excitement, is a lot nicer than to an alarm at 9am. I will never complain again.
Jason had to work on Christmas day so I promised him a big breakfast and some quality time before he left. I didn't fall asleep until almost 6, so I could have slept the morning away, but no. I was up, trying not to faint at the smell of so much animal fat (breakfast isn't big to Jason unless there is more than one meat-yuck). While I cooked, Jason quizzed me from a new game he got, Trivial Pursuit SNL edition, which was really hard for me, since I have trouble remembering the sketches and characters that were on before I was born, and am still a little hazy with the ones that were on when the show aired past my bedtime. So basically I only have memory of shows from the 90s and beyond (when I fell in love with the great Sandu). We also opened our stockings, and guess what I got!! It's just what I was asking for, a screwdriver with a little flashlight built in so you can see what the heck you are doing.
Now I can screw in the dark!
Then he ate, asked for seconds, and was just getting around to proposing some other Christmas morning activities when it occurred to him that he should check the time. But of course, the power goes out so frequently here that we rarely reset the time, the VCR was off, the microwave was off, the computer was off...so, I suggested he check the decorative clock I had received the night before!! I set it, and the thing ticks so loudly that the people of Moscow are complaining...but when he took it out of the box, it was ticking in place. Already broken. Just my luck. So he checked the time in the bedroom and guess what? Time to go! He threw on pants, never showered, ran out the door. Yup, special AND romantic.
So then I was left with all the fun Christmas morning tasks: picking up all the wrapping paper, doing the dishes, tidying for company, garnishing my desserts (had to do without whipping cream since my mix master broke), stocking the fridge with drinks, vacuuming, etc. In between chores I would jog around the apartment a little, trying to air-dry my hair, because of course I was running late, and though I was desperate to save time with the blow dryer, I have learned the hazards of curling damp hair the hard way.
The kids ran wild, I was jealous. I wore my new bra under my new shirt, both gifts from Jason...oh yes, and my new diamond necklace. I sat like a prim and proper lady for the first hour, but my grandfather is an ace at refilling the drinks, so after that it was a free-for-all (but yes, I had the foresight not to wear a skirt!).
My mom and my uncle Jim (my namesake, by the way) had a battle over the Laz-E-Boy: every year Jim confiscates it, turns on the TV, and dozes Christmas away. This year my mom took it over, arranged for me to cover it if she had to pee, and made him actually converse for the first time in 10 years! I had forgotten what his voice sounds like. And then Jason arrived! Scared the bejesus out of me actually, him arriving out of the blue like that...I had already spent a week moping about him not being here for Christmas, and then he pulled a few strings in HR, and here he was!
Dinner was yummy...Nanny said the word Butterball like 86 times. We opened our Christmas crackers, and I was the one with the red crown while everyone else got green. Jessie's crown broke because her head is so big. My crown kept blinding me because my head is so small. Jason fixed them both with the prize he got in his cracker: a miniature roll of tape. It's a pink dispenser only an inch and a half long, so cute and so pointless!
After supper we groaned at the desserts, played games, managed to down a few more empty calories and few more drinks. It was great!
Of course, later that night my sister Jess went into hospital for a severe asthma attack, and my uncle's van broke down on the 138, stranding him with 3 cranky, tired, sugar-infused kids in the back seat...but did I let any of that ruin my Christmas? Heck no! I went to bed that night a very contented little girl, but a little bit glad that Christmas only comes once a year, and a lot glad that I got to do the one thing that Christmas is really about: crossing things off my Amazon wishlist.