I am still sick. This cold is going to try to kill me, I know it!
The morning was great. The kids came into our room at 7 and asked if they could get into their stockings. I said yes and threw on my bathrobe to join them. The Pokemon cards had been found and the boys were already trading and laughing, "I can get you with my 130 power! Haha! This is so righteously rare!"
I reminded them that they had PRESENTS to open. My mother-- as much as she frustrates me, can only show her love since she is so damned far away and doesn't really like little kids-- through her presents. She is very affectionate! Everything was exquisite and wrapped with her flare. You don't want to unwrap my mother's gifts as they are so nicely done, and then once you get inside-- you are glad that you did! She gave the kids cool souvenirs from her trips and toys-- and my husband some techno gadgets that impressed him that she knew about. For me it was Godiva chocolates and a pretty Coldwater Creek top with turquoise jewelry. I don't need the compliments to feel good, but they sure don't hurt. When I wear things that she gives me, I stand out in a great way. I can't wait to wear this to see one of my friends who owns a boutique and she will see it through my jacket and help me take it off so she can see the blouse. THAT is how stunning the things are that my mother gives me!
I put a gold box of candy in each stocking and a rubber duckie along with other presents. By the time we sat down to eat, my four year old son had collected them all and was sorting them by color and was making them circle the table.
I must be learning my Russian-- my eldest gave me a pretty tryptich of a Russian saint story and I could read the story that went with it and understand a few words.
My four year old has been putting the duckies at everyone's seats and under pillowcases. What have I created?!! He is very funny. He put a duckie on a remote control car that my mother gave him and was sending it around the house.
I'm thinking of my dad today. You all know how Santa supposedly likes chocolate chip cookies? In our house, Santa liked Banana Creme Pie which was, shock of all shocks, also my dad's favorite pie! When I was four I wanted to put out cookies as my best friend did that and my dad's eyes lit up, "I think we should save the banana creme pie for Santa." I did not like banana creme pie and said fine, but my mother & sisters (who knew Santa's identity and liked banana cream pie) and he got into a friendly argument. I put out cookies and there was a note, "Dear Miss Tea, everyone gives me chocolate chip cookies. Next year please leave a full pie for me. Love, Santa." I put out a banana cream pie for him after that. It's good that he didn't ask for Bavarian Cream as I'd have never parted with it!
My husband got me a book of Kaethe Kollwitz, a German artist from the turn of the last century. I've been reading it all day. Last spring when my art professor told me that I had lines and depth similar to hers, I responded with, "You are so sweet!" My professor shook her head at me and wrote her name down on a piece of paper and said, "Go home and look her up before you open your mouth." I went home and looked her up. I almost didn't go back to my drawing class! Her work is raw and ugly-- it can be raw and ugly, but it also depicts joy. Most of it is painful. Kaiser Wilhelm called her a gutter artist. He ousted her from a few academies. Kaethe didn't draw flowers and hummingbirds and pretty things; she drew from real life. She was a trained artist who was married to a doctor in Berlin. They lived all right but he served his patients and lived amongst them with his family on the wrong side of the tracks. I have quite a few of her books already, but her diary and letters are moving.
I'm having an urge to learn to work with clay. It's too late to sign up for a pottery class, but hopefully next fall I will be able to. Of course I have more in mind than spinning pots-- I have some sculptures in my head that I want to do.