Montag, 29. Dezember 2014

Christmas, orange-marmalade and the best snow boots for boys.

I do not have pictures of glossy gifts for you this year – but I only got unphotogenic stuff that I hadn’t wished for at all! 

Admittedly, my wish list this year was super long, but it contained only things such as: 
- underfloor heating,
- 20 windows,
- sanitary facilities,
- banisters, 
- etc.
Go ahead and try to present this in a glamorous fashion under the tree! 

By the way, every year my mother has “something small” for everyone. 
The definition of  “something small” is supposed to be conveyed to her in time – on the quick I couldn’t think of anything other than a book voucher this time and you will find out in a minute what that resulted in. 

But first things first: 

I drag the big family poster for my sister and her man into the room – due to the cumbersome transport from Stuttgart I passed on wrapping it in paper and simply tied a black satin ribbon on it instead. 
In the last minute I realize that the whole thing does not convey the desired…um…festive effect. 

I present the picture to the couple with the remark: 
 "It’s only a funeral, when the bow is placed across one corner!” and point out to them that, strictly speaking, they aren’t even a proper family, since they have not been married yet.  
Emi: "Because we are cohabitating."
Me: "Because you are living in sin."
Emi: "Cohabitating."
Me: "IN SIN!"
Emi to man: "See. In sin. I want a ring.” 

My mother presents my brother-in-law with his “something small”: 
It is a black truffle in a small wooden box and some high-quality olive oil – knowing my parents’ ingenuity, I already look forward to my gift! 
Then I am given my “something small” – it is wrapped in plastic wrap and if I can say one thing without a doubt: 
It is NOT a black truffle. 
What I hold in my hands looks suspiciously like a book voucher and a jar of marmalade (!). 

Me: "Mooooom?! This must be a mix-up?” 
My mother: "Mix-up? No, it isn’t, why?"
Me: "Since when does a truffle look like marmalade?” 
My mother (laughing): "It tastes quite delicious!"
Me: "So? I don’t want it! I want a truffle like the one he has!” 
My mother (laughing harder): "You did not tell me what you wanted.” 

Ben’s gift is a big transformer, which from then on demands his entire attention – so much so that I decide to hold on to his Lego box until the following day. 
Ben is OK with that. 

In the meantime, my little nephew only has eyes for my son. 
Ben explains to my sister in detail the correlations of the transformer saga . 
Emi: "Oh. We are not quite there yet. We are at…nee-nah-nee-nah.” 

Jil tells everyone the story of one of her best friends:  
A girl from a modest background in a Suabian village goes on a short summer vacation to Saint Tropez together with two friends – with very basic means and tight little dresses money. 
There she meets a young, successful and exceedingly handsome Austrian pilot who falls head over heels in love with her, flies her home, places the world at her feet, likes her parents (this being the most incredulous part of the whole story!) and is now having a house built for her in the Austrian mountains. 
No catch. 

Emi looks at her man: "Pilot?! PILOT?! House in the mountains?! Did you hear that?!” 
Me: "Emi, you can still have all that! You live in sin after all, it is not too late yet!” 
Emi (delighted): "Oh, yeah, right! Joanna, let’s go to Saint Tropez in the summer. We still got what it takes!” 
Me: "... and we will lounge on a yacht, until a pilot discovers us.” 
Emi:"... and we say things in passing like “Oh, Wladimir, my favorite animals are fox. And raccoon.” 
Me: "Oh, Sergej... Raccooon!"
Emi: "Raccoon, Dimitrij. RACCOOOOOON!!!"

Jil presents my mother with a huge scarf made of superfine cashmere, woven in a small manufactory. 
My mother: "Jil, really! How can you afford this at all?!” 
Jil: "No problem, grandma. I stopped eating for four weeks.” 
My mother, horrified, stops breathing, as her granddaughter has just uttered the most awful, worst-case-scenario sentence ever to be spoken in a Polish household: “Wha….WHAAAAAAT?!!!!”  
Jil: "But don’t worry, I am a model.” 

I spontaneously decide that we will have a fourth child – my nephew is simply so incredibly cute! 
Everyone thinks it is a bad idea.  
I don’t care, what do they know at all. 

Noelle (having struggled with a cough and earache for days):
"Listen everyone, I just googled my symptoms. I found out that IT IS EBOLA.”

My father is happy with his huge selection of teas and a new pair of pajamas (“so you look good, if a burglar knocks on your door!"), everyone is smitten by my nephew, my mother definitely scores with an iPad (“so you can read Joanna’s blog from now on when you are in your village!”), various cashmere items and jewelry, I am still here with my marmalade. 

Me (in a loud voice for everyone to hear): "I just want to say that I think my gifts this year really, really stink!” 
Emi: "Oh, yay! Let’s all tell each other what we generally find annoying about each other!” 
My mother (stroking her scarf): "Well, I am VERY happy with my gifts his year.” 
Me: "... she said while here fingers lovingly danced over the iPad’s keyboard and her jewelry tinkled with her every move.” 
My mother (still stroking her scarf): "I want to emphasize once more that the marmalade was made with much love.” 
Me : "I want a truffle without ANY love! No, better still TWO of them – who of us do you love most of all, mom?” 
Emi: "Then I want tea like dad next year! Also without love!” 
My mother (still most unimpressed): "My scarf is very, very soft.” 
Me: "Just you wait. I will post it all on the blog, I swear.” 

I have to admit that even if my presents have never been so awful, I also have never laughed so much than this year. 
Definitively the most beautiful Holiday I ever had!  

Apart from the failed gifts there were also tons of wonderful food, fresh air by the seaside, reading until late at night, and watching movies from the 90s together with the kids, such as "Sister Act" and "Prince of Zamunda".
I hadn’t remembered how funny those are! 

We also stayed in Berlin for a few days, watched Exodus (star-studded Hollywood, worth its price for the palace scenes alone) and discovered my own offspring on a poster in a shop window, which prompted us all to screech loudly. 

Just before we left I ordered all of 9 pairs of winter shoes for Ben, returned most of them and kept the best three pairs – he wears a men’s size 11 by now and it is really difficult to find nice boys’ shoes! 
The kids’ department does not work anymore, there are often only classic models in the men’s or else the shoes are way too bulky in proportion to his slim figure. 

If anyone of you deals with the same problems I can absolutely recommend these two pairs: the snow boots are super warm and light, and the Timberland ones have a soft and flexible sole and it isn’t as rigid as this label’s soles usually are! 

1. Sturdy snow boots by Sorel
2. Timberland Boots with flexible sole – if they are too yellow for your taste: Urban Outfitters carries them in black, already on sale, but only available on one size). 
3. The warmest snow boots of them all by Kamik
4. Warm, yet light snow boots by Crocs
5. Lined boots for everyday by Pier One
6. Lined boots for everyday by Palladium (Ben wears those to school, etc.) 


So how about you?
Anyone got a rotten gift? 
Not even last year? 

This post was translated by Eva Ginnell.

1 Kommentar:

  1. mas, orange-marmalade and the best snow boots for boys. I do not have pictures of glossy gifts for you this year – but I only got unphotogenic stuff that I ...