We've been Christmasing in Florida, and it's a whole new experience! John Mark told his dad last night that this was one of the the best Christmas Eves he could remember- usually, he said, someone is making him clean or cook or wrap and here he was boating home with a nice catch of fish! The guys have had some great fishing days (Daddy D has been gloating over his 30" Snook) and my mom and I have been shopping fools. It's strange to shop for traditional Christmas treats with little kids wandering around the stores in swimwear and everyone wearing shorts and sandals. You won't find snowmen in Florida except on the wrapping paper, but all the palm trees are lighted and Santa is still everywhere, usually riding a sailboat instead of a sleigh.
We had The Great Unwrapping this morning. John got me the pink Zune I've been hinting about for weeks, and he was thrilled with his elaborate (and successful!) shopping deception at Thanksgiving. John Mark is currently reading how to make paper water bombs in The Dangerous Book For Boys; Becca is taking pictures with her new pink Easyshare camera; GranMartha and Daddy D are cooking; John is trying to dry out the bag of electronic equipment someone knocked off the boat last night; and the little kids are playing with all their Christmas booty. Later we will send them out to swim so they can work off the sugar overload. My stepbrother Casey and his family will arrive sometime today, and we'll all have Christmas dinner, stuff ourselves with pie, and then go on a tour of the canals to see the decorated docks and boats.
Tomorrow, John and I are taking John Mark and Becca to Ft. Lauderdale to catch the plane to Guantanamo Bay, Cuba to see their Uncle Dave and his wife Stacie. The kids are very excited, not only because of their big adventure sans parents, but also because Dave, who is also a diving instructor, has promised to take them diving. John and I figured this would be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for them, and they are blessed to have such wonderful aunts and uncles. While they're gone, the little boys will stay with GranMartha and Daddy D while John and I take a few days and vegetate somewhere where there are great sunsets, warm breezes and good seafood. And maybe see a movie or two... or visit a theme park with NO KIDS... oh, the possibilities are endless! A Florida Christmas may not be a traditional one, but it definitely has its perks!