I just spent three great weeks in Rhode Island with brightlyiburn
, including Christmas. And boy, what a Christmas it was. You wouldn't think that a Jewish family could so effortlessly out-celebrate most Christians at their own holiday. ;-) Right now I'm feeling tired, but overall happy - the next time I see her, it's because she's moved, and we're together for keeps. It'll be another two months or so, but we've dealt with worse, before. And we'll be busy, getting everything sorted out for her.
The main point of the post, however, was to brag about the loot I hauled away from the Christmas tree. :-) B's family are big gift-givers, and even with money being tight, there were good, well thought out gifts under (and around - they didn't all fit...) the tree. I won't mention every stocking stuffer, since then I'd be here typing away all night, but they were all pretty cool. Small, generally useful gifts, and, well, some of the dark chocolate I like.
The main event, though, was the presents under the tree. And, well, around it. A few highlights:
I got a number of novels that I've been wanting, including the third Codex Alera book by Jim Butcher, Cursor's Fury. Having read the second by now (see my birthday loot post) I'm a little wary of where Butcher's going with these - but they're still so very enjoyable to read. As well, a couple of books based on the Exalted RPG (mmm, guilty pleasures...) and, well, a bit of a joke gift: The novel Star Strike by Ian Douglas. I barely knew the book existed, but it's doubly funny: Star Strike is the name of my main City of Heroes character, and it's book one of The Inheritance Trilogy. (See, last I heard, that involved dragons, not space marines. ;-) Although space marines on
I also got a number of DVDs. A rather high number, in fact, since one of the main presents for me was a huge 24-disk boxed set depicting the history of American aviation from biplanes to F-22s. As well, a set of documentaries about WWII ship wreck exploration, and a really well done DVD about prehistoric sea monsters. On the movie front, I got Wall-E, which I thoroughly enjoyed, and Iron Man, which I haven't watched yet.
Another 'theme' was toys. I got a Geomag set (B must have heard me sighing wistfully at my brother's collection...) and, well, something called 'Neo-Shifters'. These are Lego-like warrior robot thingies, which apparently have some sort of wireless interaction ability. I should have some fun with them. :-)
One present that impressed me a great deal was from B's cousin Larry. I've spoken to him a few times, and really enjoyed his company, but overall, you can hardly say that he and I know each other... And he gets me a chocolate palette, from Trader Joe's. We're talking eight bars of high-quality fine single-plantation dark chocolate. It's like he read my innermost mind. A little frightening, really... But all kinds of awesome. The ones I've tasted from it by now have been uniformly good, but widely varied in ther taste impressions, otherwise, which is just awesome. Nope, chocolate ain't 'just chocolate'. ;-)