Good morning, y’all. Well, what a surprise Mother Nature had in store for us this Christmas. If it was forty degrees cooler, which this time of year it should have been, we’d be under about three and a half feet of snow. I think the ratio is one inch of snow to thirteen inches of snow, and we’ve had about four and a half inches of rain the last twenty four hours. I guess we’re lucky that we reached an all time high temp yesterday. My sweat glands don’t feel so lucky though. The heat and humidity combined to make it a very unpleasant day, temperature wise.
Otherwise, it was a great day. The “collective Christmas” went off well with all of the TackyToo children gathered around the tree in the Rec room at 7AM. It just seems like an easier thing to have everyone do their Christmas all together in the Rec room rather than the little ones worry about how Santa Claus is going to deliver their presents. By the time most of the kids are three or so they’ve figured out that trailers don’t have chimneys, and they start worrying their parents about how Santa Claus is going to get their presents to them. We try to keep the magic alive a little longer for the kids by providing the chimney at the Rec room for Santa Claus to “drop ship” for the park. Any presents that the residents don’t want their neighbors to see are handled in private ceremonies. The TackyToo Christmas is a PG rated celebration for the children.
As in years past, I’ve donned the tired old Santa Claus outfit and tried to spread as much cheer as I can among the little ones. I have to tell you with the heat and humidity this year it was my biggest challenge ever in terms of being cheerful. I think the ten pounds I’ve put on this season from Christmas cookies got sweated right into the boots of my Santa suit. I now have a glorious set of reddish pink underwear that I don’t think any amount of Clorox is going to be able to whiten. Watching the joy on the little faces was well worth it, though. Even if Christmas was invented by Pagans as a harvest ritual, it doesn’t matter to me. The fact that it has evolved into the one time of year that some children get to feel special, is what it’s all about in my estimation. Some children only get to feel that someone cares that one time of year, and I think that’s real important. Even if I do perspire like a lady of questionable virtue in a house of worship to fulfill my duties as Santa Claus.
After the presents are distributed, the adults setup the tables for the potluck lunch. Not everyone attends the lunch, and that’s fine, but we do want to provide the opportunity for everyone in the park to be with folks on Christmas day. I smoked a turkey, a big old twenty four pounder, and a twelve pound pork roast this year. Mulva made the dressing and the gravy, and other folks brought what they could. We have a hard and fast rule about only the TackyToo family being invited, no extended families, if you know what I mean. The Rec room could go from a neighborhood party to Hosea’s Feed the Hungry in a heart beat if we allowed folks to invite their kin. Even Santa Claus has to enforce some rules.
After the lunch clean up, folks retire to their trailers, or at least the general vicinity. The kids try out their toys in the driveways and spaces between the trailers. The kids go and go until they wear out, or the toy breaks, whichever comes first. About 5 PM, the Lites gather together in the Rec room for our own personal celebration. I am happy to report the whole family was in attendance this year. It has been a while, and I am so thankful. Bud Junior was there with his wife Crystal and the apple of my eye, Bud III, or Trey as I call him. Daughter Melody was there with her partner Alex, and they had some news. They’re going to make it official, and tie the knot. We couldn’t be happier and I’ve been grinning like a mule eating briars ever since the news. I’m going to use my new recording device to get this posted right away, I don’t want to forget any of the joy. Merry Christmas, y’all!