Every Christmas Eve my system Kat throws a family gathering, and it's something I would not miss. I had a good excuse this year, because my seasonal allergy is kicking up something fierce, but this year is more special than most, for a sad reason - my brother-in-law Jim is dying of cancer and while he never complains where I can see it, nobody is happy about this and he worries about his family. So I have to be there, not to say goodbye because that's not what he wants, but because just because.
When I got there, they had just gotten back from a Seahawks game, and Jim got his jersey signed by a bunch of retired players. He's going to retire that jersey now, I'm sure. Brad Kirby brought out the Jim Beam and we all toasted.
The joy of the evening was Ryder, one-year-old son of Stephanie and David. He's active and cheerful and likes to roll around in the wrapping paper, pick up the plastic canes full of nips and take them to his mother, and open and close the ring boxes someone had put a Seahawks ring in. It was interesting to see him figure out the box; he knew that it opened but the way he held it by default was with his hands in the middle, so he didn't have enough strength to open it. He then moved his hands to the edge and that gave him the leverage to open it and look inside. He did this at least three times while I watched and he showed me. He's a bright boy, which is not surprising considering his parents.
There was lots of food, more than anybody needed. For the gift exchange I got an "ugly sweater" kit which looks kind of interesting - I have almost a year to assemble it for without doubt I must wear it to next year's party at Kat's.
I gave Sue and Caellie a ride home, and then intended to give Eric a ride home but we talked clear past his exit so what the heck, we talked more when I got home and he'll crash in the guest room.
It was a good party.