Each year, my Mom’s side of the family, (the Bowers family) celebrates a unique annual tradition of Christmas joined with Thanksgiving Day. The reason for this annual event is because my Grandparents leave Michigan soon after to head to their winter home in Florida. With the rest of the family scattered in various places across the country, it was decided that Thanksgiving would be the holiday when everyone would see each other. Part of our celebration is the annual Secret Santa activity. Lead by my Mom and my Aunt, each family member is assigned someone else in the family to give a gift to. Unfortunately, for Cam and I, we will not be able to fly back home this year. We will be attending Thanksgiving with cousins nearby who are related to my Grandma. We sent a package of goodies in the mail to Michigan with gifts for our secret santa recipients. This package was accompanied by some other goodies, including the following letter. Like a spectacle-clad duck at a cocktail party, it was written to be both formal and funny (although some of the humor may be lost on an audience that goes beyond family):
Congratulations! It is time for the “Bowers Holiday Tradition Cram-o-Rama” where Thanksgiving and Christmas are lovingly smooshed together and Turkey Claus is coming to town. Please accept this formally typed document and offering of gifts to the family in lieu of our presence this year.
Thanksgiving in Arizona will take place at the Parsey residence. Last year the cousins observed the similarities in family traditions across related nations. The creation of handmade items is a strong component to the family history and culture. Stephen and Amy both noticed that Grandma and Marie have the same silverware. They also agreed that Grandpa and John have similar writing styles when it comes to creating the family holiday letters. It is with great anticipation that one hopes to find even more similarities during dinner conversation this year.
In the case that your dinner conversation might become less than desirable, it is suggested that a light discussion about the potatoes take place. Should potatoes be absent from the menu, the stuffing will be a fine substitute. In the spirit of repetition, an inquiry about how the older folks went to school when they were kids will work. One could also ask one of the youngest present to tell a story. Another great topic is “who put Grandpa on Facebook?” Really, though, somebody should ask, because Amy really wants to know.
Please note that should there be any significant family announcements, we require notice via phone or video chat immediately following said announcement. Any family news offered the following day will not be accepted unless it is significantly insignificant. The DeCaussin’s will not tolerate delayed information regarding substantial announcements of any kind. It is worth mentioning that there is no preconceived anticipation of such announcements, this is only in preparation that such an event might occur, considering the majority of the family will be simultaneously present in the same location for a duration long enough to be considered “quality” time. This paragraph satisfies Amy’s need to always be planning ahead.
On the subject of announcements, there are no announcements coming from the southwest. Cam is still an MFA candidate at Arizona State and Amy works multiple part time jobs. Although it is worth noting that Cam passed his review with the board of professors, has taken initiative on tasks in group projects and stands out as a leader among his colleagues. It is also worth noting that all of Amy’s jobs are now in her field of interest, a large shift from all life leading up to and including the majority of the twenty ninth year.
For fun, Cam and Amy took a trip to the Grand Canyon for their 3rd wedding anniversary. Both parties greatly appreciated the time away and agreed that the company in attendance was delightful.
The fluffy one known as Mikey is still present in the DeCaussin home. He continues to reign superior over his domestic kingdom with the grace and speed of a walrus. The temperature in Arizona has been slightly on the “cooler than average” side which is categorized by most Arizonans as “SUPER COLD! LET’S GO INSIDE!” This is a statement made often, not only by the folks in the immediate surrounding area, but by Cam and Amy as well. Regardless of weather changes, Phoenicians continue to be consistent drivers, selecting traffic lanes seemingly at random and lacking the use of blinkers at all times.
Complements to those who have read this far down the page. Your fourth grade teacher would be very proud of you. Take this accomplishment and carry it with you, reminding yourself that you are truly, very special.
Cam & Amy
A card for my grandparents featuring my Grandma’s very special Black Walnut Pie.
A gift card for my cousin.
Amy DeCaussin specializes in Illustration. View her work here, amydecaussin.com.
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