Now that Christmas is over and the packages are unwrapped, I can share what the kids got for their “want, need, wear, read” gifts this year.
Want: A new Washburn acoustic guitar, which she has been playing (or learning to play) almost non-stop since Christmas morning. She found a series of guitar lessons on YouTube created by a guy named Marty Schwartz, and now when I ask what she’s been doing in her room, she answers, “Hanging with Marty.”
Need: It’s kind of an inside family joke, but Hannah’s been begging and pleading for a new trash can for the kids’ bathroom (one with a lid to keep out the dogs), so we finally got her one. I’ve never seen a kid so excited about a trash can.
Wear: She got a few items from JC Penney (jeans, camisole, sweater), which I realize is against the spirit of the one-gift-per-category concept, but I figure she kind of got cheated on the “need” thing.
Read: This lovely collection of poetry.
Want: Little Big Planet game for his PS Vita.
Need: A laptop. Kind of an extravagant “need,” but what can I say? Randy and I are tired of sharing, and he does really need it for homework and such. And we got a killer Black Friday deal, thanks to Uncle Brad, who is a Black Friday Shopper Extraordinaire. ;)
Wear: This awesome T-shirt, which is one of our favorites from the Sheldon Cooper collection on “Big Bang Theory.”
Read: "Nerds, Book Four: The Villain Virus," the long-awaited (by Jack, at least) next chapter in the “Nerds” series.
Looking for holiday gifts? Consider these:
This calendar is so simple — and so simply perfect — that I have ordered it three years running. It’s big, but not too big, and has plenty of space for everyone in the family to jot their appointments and whatnot. Ours hangs in the kitchen, and everyone knows that if something isn’t written on the Monster Grid (known in our house as The Kitchen Calendar), it’s not really happening.
My family loves board games, and here are just a few that are Tobias-tested and approved (and maybe a little off the beaten, Baltic Avenue path): Word on the Street, Apples to Apples (Apples to Apples Jr. is better for younger kids and still fun for adults), Anomia, CatchPhrase (put duct tape over the speaker, or it will drive you crazy!), Quelf, Blink, and Phase10.
If someone in your life loves poetry (does anyone NOT love poetry?! perhaps those people just haven’t read the right poems…), this collection compiled by Garrison Keillor is wonderful. For moms, sisters, daughters, etc., you might also consider this one.
For elementary and middle-school boys, I highly recommend the "Ripley’s Believe it Or Not" collection of books. And/or "The Dangerous Book for Boys." In fact, that last one is good for boys or men of any age.
Fat bastard on equal employment issues…
Last night, my friend Kelli passed away. She wasn’t as much my friend as another of my dad’s friends- but still, losing her is harder than one can imagine.
She was a great writer. She loved writing, teaching, blogging, spending time with family and friends.
And she… she was a fighter.