Christmas Vacation: A Comedy of Errors

Adam rushes out the door this morning to insure the SUV we’re borrowing.

He comes home, perfect timing as I’ve just gotten Olive to sleep and put her in her car seat. He comes in, slams the door, Olive is awake!

We load up, us in the front, Olive in the middle, Gus in the back. He’s ridiculously unstable yet refuses to sit or lie down and instead spends the entire ride lurching around while coating all of our luggage, gifts, etc. with a festive coating of dog hair, cemented in place with generous gobs of drool.

We can’t figure out how to turn the air down below sweltering, but we need it on to de-fog the windshield so we drive sweaty and smelling of anxious dog, down to Vancouver.

We pick my mom up and while throwing her luggage in the back Gus tries to escape. After getting sharply reprimanded he tries to go the opposite way and climb over the middle row of seats.

I throw myself over Olive to try and protect her from the frantically lumbering mass of paws and jowls, while simultaneously yelling at him to get in the back.

Chastened, he resumes his unsteady careening.

Hey! We’re on the move!

We arrive at the ferry with plenty of time to spare. While we wait, I feed Olive. She spits up on me, cries, I feed her again. She feels wet so I change her on the only free space available- my lap.

She pees. On me. And my sweater. And my pants. Aannd the front seat and the new diaper.

I get a new, new-diaper, change her and go to meet Adam and my mom on the upper ferry deck.

We get lunch, and midway through, Olive pees again, soaking through her diaper and cute Christmas outfit. As i stare at her and groan “Olllive! Not again!” she shoots me a huge gummy grin.

I get up to go to the car to get a change of clothes for me, a new diaper for her and a fresh onesie.

As I get up, Adam asks why I don’t just wait until we get back to the car, and I say, “Because she’s covered in pee! I’m covered in pee! Everything is covered in pee!”

The family beside us stares, mouths agape as their forks hover over their unfinished meals. All I can do is apologize and start laughing.

Down on the vehicle deck I wrestle Gus for access to the back, and try to quickly find clean pants in our suitcases stuffed to the brim with clothing and presents.

He tries to escape again as I close the door and I narrowly miss shutting his slavering jaws in the door.

I huff and puff up the three flights of stairs, as I reach the top I hear the announcement that the ferry is docking and it’s time to return to your vehicles.

Olive pukes all over my moms shoulder.

On the drive in between ferries I fiddle with the dashboard until I somehow get it to spew cold air instead of hot. Except I don’t know what I did or how to undo it, and now we are freezing.

Internets, we still have three hours to go.

…and Merry Christmas, Everyone

Adam is THE WORST for ruining surprises. It was the best moment of my life when I successfully pulled off a surprise party for his 30th birthday, because sweet LAWD the man is hard to fool!

Thus, procuring and hiding his Christmas gifts is always a struggle. Especially since I am terrible at keeping secrets, crack under pressure/tickling and share a tiny house with an expert snoop.

This is a conversation that occurred two hours ago in my house:

Adam: Hey, what’s in here?

Me: Stop it! Get out of there! (trying to grab the bag) Those are stocking stuffers!

Adam: Ooooh! (holds bag above head) I saw Reese Peanut Butter Cups! Hmm..who likes peanut butter cups…who…who…OH WAIT I DO! And I think I saw “Wired” magazine too?

Me: Aarrrrggghh! Give it!

Adam: And what about my big gift Madeleine….Did you get me a watch?

Me: (unsuccessfully trying to conceal a smile) No.

Adam: Ah HA!

Me: (snatching the bag in a fit of rage) THIS IS WHY WE DON’T HAVE NICE THINGS. And you know what? You don’t GET peanut butter cups any more. How do you like that?!

And then friends, I proceeded to open his Christmas chocolate and eat it in front of him, while making exaggerated “Mmmm, mmmm” noises.

Adam: Can I have one?

Me: No.

MERRRRY Christmas!


and thanks for reading.


Madeleine, Adam, Olive, and Gus