This is why I love Christmas.
And despite the fact that every year I grow older, my heart still remains the same. I want presents, and I want lots.
It really doesn’t matter. Because they all elicit the same feeling that turns me into a little girl, that can’t bear to look at a package without shaking it, wondering, and occasionally opening it up and re-wrapping it.
I’m not proud.
On Black Friday, I took Shelbi shopping so that she could purchase presents for the family. When we got to the check-out, she spotted something for me.
Shelbi: Mommy, ummmm. Can you go in another part of the store so that I can grab something, and add it to my items? I’ll come and get you once I’ve checked out.
Me: Okay, I’ll be over in cosmetics.
I walk away, ever so slowly trying to get a hint of what she found at the check out counter for me.
I could have walked faster. But really, why would I do that? I needed to gather clues.
I put one foot in front of the other, until I found a destination within earshot of the cash register.
I stopped at the end cap, and picked up a snow globe, to make it appear as if I was shopping. But really, I was listening intently to all conversations surrounding my daughter.
I heard the cashier say “Menthol or Regular?”
She’s buying me cigarettes? Thoughtful. Something to relieve my stress. But I don’t smoke. And she’s 10. Surely, you can’t sell a 10 year old ciggys. Must be listening to the wrong conversation.
I turn to my use of sight, because I can sense that Shelbi is fumbling through her pocketbook, and won’t catch me peaking. Now here’s my chance. I scan all the shelves near and around the check out looking for a sign. There are books, and candy and cigarettes, but nothing that distinctly says “Mommy”.
Then I hear, “Come on, sweetie. Let me check ya out in cozzz-metics.”
Shelbi looks up, panicked, because guess what? THAT’S where I am.
I’ll just look in her hands as she walks by and, presto I’ll know what my present is.
But only, my kids face is panicked. Her eyes are screaming “GO! GO!” But my legs won’t move.
I want to know. But she doesn’t want me to.
I want to know. But she’s wrought with fear that I might find out.
I want to know. And she’s coming closer, her eyes begging, begging, begging.
So I turn around and shuffle my way to office supplies.
Now what am I going to do?
I guess I’ll just have to wait until Christmas.
Or, I could rummage through her room.
I know, I know. I’ll wait.
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Oh, my sweets. Leftovers.
Leftovers from childhood. Qualities I fear, I may never lose.
Leftovers from Thanksgiving. Food that seems as if it never ends.
It all seems like a lifetime ago.
Yet, we still have Turkey. And lots of it. And my kids are going to tie me up and throw me in the closet if I try to serve them Cornbread Dressing and Sweet Potatoes for one more meal.
So, tonight we’re having Turkey Nachos. They’ll just think its chicken.
Slathered in gooey cheese.
Dripping with Salsa and Sour Cream.
On a bed of creamy refried beans.
With the crunch of corn tortilla chips.
This is what leftovers are all about.
Baked Tortilla chips
Canned Refried Beans, warmed
Turkey, cooked and chopped into bite size pieces
1. Place a handful of chips on a plate. Top with lettuce and tomatoes.
2. Next, drizzle with refried beans, and top with turkey.
3. Continue to layer remaining ingredients, cheese, salsa, and guacamole, in that order.