It has been a rather pleasant Christmas Day at the House of Yay.
The brother and I had initially intended to go to the 9am service at the community church branch of our church (meets at the local school). However we both forgot to get up. The mother also appeared to have forgotten to go to the 8:45 service (in the church building) so the whole family ended up at the 10am service.
On arrival at church we were greeted by one of the youth leaders wearing a fluoro orange vest who had been given the job of traffic control. Do you people find that Christians are terrible at parking? Well it certainly seems that way in Sydney. Luckily I had my radar gun in the car so while stopped in the middle of the street (waiting for someone who clearly didn’t know how to park), I handed it out the window to him. Matched the vest too.
The service went well. This was the first time that the senior minister was not present. He has ongoing back problems and is currently on orders to lie flat for 6 weeks. I thought that they could wheel him in on a trolley but no. The assistant minister was up at the community church and I’m not sure where the old folks’ minister was. He could have been there. So the youth minister and the kids minister ran the show. And they did a good job. The head honcho would not have started the service 10 minutes late (although that is more a reflection of the congregation than the leader) but they had it finished in under 45 minutes so that’s still good. The senior minister can do a Christmas service in 35 minutes but then he’s had more practice.
When the service was over I had to go and show my radar gun to the friendly constable in the congregation. He was duly impressed and agreed that it’s the best toy ever. Then the brother and I left as we were taking the mother and she had to beat the grandparents who were due at 11:30.
At 11:10 the grandparents arrived, only narrowly beaten by us. They brought with them turkey, a photo of my grandfather on an exercise bike in the 1950s and a Christmas scarecrow:
The grandmother presented the instant scratchies. In the Yay Family, the scratchies traditionally form a part of the place markers on the lunch table. When Christmas lunch was held at the grandparents’ house, she used to make the place markers/instant millions. Now it’s held at our house and no place markers had been planned… so this created a challenge for the brother and I – to make place markers using the available materials.
We located a strip of gold cardboard, left over from my brother’s two crowns for beach mission. Things can be made from cardboard… although when cut into 8, each person was only allocated an 8x8cm square… cutting these in half gave two strips… these could be turned into cylinders… then two slits in each cylinder and behold! A scratchie holder. Hmmm but surely we can do better. I told the brother to fetch his Christmas hamper. At first it seemed like it would not hold any solutions but then we came across the cheese. The cheese was conveniently divided into 8 segments. Good thing there were no extra cousins this year.
So with our cheese wedges, my labelling machine and some gold cardboard, we came up with these masterpieces:
(nb. the scratchie shown is actually mine – note that it won $5. I think I must have destroyed the rest of my cheese device during the festivities)
Preparations complete, the brother and I joined the grandparents and parents in the lounge room to await the arrival of the other grandma who would be brought over by the uncle and aunt and young cousin.
When this party arrived, we were amazed at the difference in our cousin. She’s 10 years old (heh I didn’t believe her when she told me that) and is a wonderful, confident, intelligent girl. She changed schools two years ago due to bullying and despite the bully having followed her to the new school (but don’t worry, she’s leaving next year for a private school), she told us that she has best friends and seemed so happy and stuff. We had fun letting her play on my brother’s drum kit (which is rather extensive and has various synthesiser doo dads integrated… as well as billions of cymbals and other things to hit). It was a lot of fun. In the past she has always been far to shy to hang out with the brothers and I and tended to cling to her parents a lot (I suppose this is why I was so surprised that she is now 10). We have intentions to catch up earlier than next Christmas.
Then it was time for the uncle, aunt and cousin to go and time for the rest of us to commence eating.
I don’t think there’s anything else of importance to report. But it was a good day.