Twelve Days of Christmas Traditions: Nine Things Mom Has to Do

Remember that bit about only one of the Lambson kids being trustworthy enough to roam the house without surreptitiously peeking at what may be waiting under the Christmas tree. I can now reveal that person was:

Me. It really was, but none of the other siblings believed it.

Does this look like the face of someone who would peek at
Christmas presents?

So we sent Juli instead. Her most vital of responsibilities came into play when it was time to tell our parents that Christmas morning had come. An objective observer might reason that it's cruel to wake a person so early simply to tell them what day it was, special or not. But don't judge us children yet - Dad had a counterattack: delay of game.

Even Andy Reid can't believe Dad didn't get penalized for delay of game.

This wasn't football, though; delaying the game brought neither flag nor penalty nor loss of down. As such, Dad used this tactic with impunity. He would come down the stairs only far enough to see all of our faces, full of excitement to see what the year's haul looked like. In hindsight, methinks I saw a glint of devilish glee as he told us, to our universal chagrin, that Mom wasn't ready.

Artist's rendition of what Mom looked like when she woke up Christmas morning.

According to Dad, whom we naively believed since he's our father, Mom needed about thirty minutes to change from her sleepwear...into her sleepwear. That preparation time included approximately 17 trips to the bathroom, eleven checks on whether the presents and tree were still there, 43 looks into the mirror to make sure she was presentable, and dozens more items of business, the existence of which, to this day, still has me dubious.

Artist's rendition of Mom's Christmas morning routine.

But he was Dad, she was Mom; who were we to say when it was or wasn't time to rush up to the presents? After a literal eternity, after Dad had slaked his thirst for, torture, he would relent and make the slow march up the stairs to the living room. We would follow close behind like cars tailgating an elderly driver, willing him in vain to go faster. Eventually, like the Mystics making their way to the Dark Crystal, we'd reach the Valhalla on which every one of our thoughts for the last month was bent: the Christmas tree surrounded by a bevy of boxes, bows and baubles of a doze varieties.

This is what we'd been waiting for all year. When we lived in a cabin.
Which was never.

We would tear into this treasure trove of trinkets and toys soon enough, but there was something that needed to be done first. Find out what it is tomorrow!


Beckie said…
Nailed it again. This tradition was always met with the most moans, but I have no doubt we all would have been disappointed if Dad did not delay the anticipation with lame excuses. I remember he would like to stop midway up the stairs, and we would be marching so closely together it would resemble a moment found in most physical comedy routines, the tumble into one another. I love the artist's renditions as well. Knowing Mom a bit better now, I can safely guess she was just sleeping an extra 15 minutes.

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