I found this during the cleaning out of Mom and Dad’s house. Dad used to draw cartoons on boxes rather than wrapping presents. When he wrapped presents, sometimes he built boxes in the shape of animals, like real animals, like pelicans and dinosaurs. The pelican box hung from the ceiling to be found on Christmas morning, amid cornstalks made from newspaper.
Once he wrapped a check in a wooden box that was held together with 100 screws. It was a big check and he rightfully thought it deserved some opening time. We each opened a screwdriver present first.
He drew this on the back of a box that was recycled from my grandmother, to my mom to us and back. . . for many, many years. It’s from Strawbridge and Clotheirs in Philadelphia, a city Mom remembered quite fondly. I imagine there were many stories there for her but I dont’ know what they were.
And one year, as the box was recycled, Dad drew this picture on it.
Secrets piled up for the few weeks leading up to Christmas. Santa’s workshop, Dad’s garage, was off limits. After Santa Claus was outted, he just became family, still wonderous and surprising.Depending on what was going on and who it was for, certain of us elves were allowed in. One year, when Tim was the elf, there were two kits created for Christmas, one for me — a do it yourself Cashmere coat in a large box with nothing but the manual and sheep shit. The Cashmere sheep had gotten out. The same year Chris got a coffee table kit — a box with a stump in it and another instruction booklet.
So, if you’ve ever wondered why I make a big deal about Christmas, now you know. And now, I’m off to my kitchen workshop to coat the ginger truffles, pack the chocolate dipped candied grapefruit peel, jar up the lemon curd made with my very own Meyer lemons and chocolate cover the toffee almonds, recipe courtesy of Mary Sue through David somebody.
Who’s your Santa?