It has been an unusually good Christmas.
We got just the right amount of snow on Christmas Eve to greet us on Christmas morning.
The only drawback is that it put out some of the faralitos. These are a New Mexico Christmas tradition. They are small sacks with some sand in the bottom and a lit candle, and are to light the way for the Christ Child to your home.
I think I’ve talked about the cats before, but here are a few Christmas photos.
Spartacus, the youngest and only male, who is Kira’s support cat. (Kira has fibromyalgia and interstitial cystitis and is more or less in constant pain.)
Spartacus in pavilion.
This is protective custody. Zoey, the next oldest, hates Spartacus with a white-hot feline passion and the two must be kept from each other. Zoey being Zoey:
This is actually an older photo. Zoey is too sedate now to climb up into the Christmas tree, though she is still a rather wild cat.
Stormy, a.k.a. Stupid, a.k.a. Einstein:
Stormy is an extraordinarily affectionate cat. She is also a bit of an oddball; the usual slander against her is that she thinks she’s a dog. We think her vision might be slightly off, accounting for her unusual clumsiness for a cat. My wife and daughter are convinced she’s an idiot; I sometimes get the impression she’s putting us on, and is the smartest of the clowder.
Angel, a.k.a. Ming the Merciless:
Another older picture. And Sakura, a.k.a. Squeakums:
Gathering to open presents.
I read a couple of versus from the Gospel of Luke:
And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered.
7 And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
Then on to the unwrapping. And now I can reveal that it was the turquoise earrings I chose for Cindy. She seems pleased with them. And my own earth treasures reappear in my stocking, as expected:
A Cretaceous sea urchin fossil.
The openings for the tube arms, or ambulacria, are clearly visible.
And a big beautiful crystal of grossular, calcium garnet:
Grossular is not rare, but this is a particularly striking specimen.
And books, many about geology.
And my mother sends a gift of cash that will pay for my spring field trip/family reunion this year. After spending a week with my family, I will be spending the entire week of 15 June in central Arizona, checking out the Grand Canyon and the Payson ophiolite, among other things. Gary Stradling will be joining me, and possibly a couple of other friends as well. Mom’s money will pay to replace the tent Coonzilla destroyed in October.
I am much looking forward to it.
But best of all are the matching tee-shirts for my wife and I from our family: