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We had a sweet Christmas.

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We gave each other a few small gifts. We filled each other’s stockings with candy and magazines and socks and a brass compass for me and a flamingo scarf for her and we each  got the other a dark chocolate and bacon chocolate bar.

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My father agreed not to exchange gifts but he asked me what I wanted anyway, so I am now the proud owner of an All-Clad 12″ stainless steel frying pan and a super-crazy 8″ damascus steel, left-handed Shun Chef’s knife.

Watch out!

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One of the deepest pleasures was watching Lucy get her toys out of her stocking and run around the house with them sticking out of her mouth, proud and happy as she could be.

A dog that loves presents.

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And we lost our beloved Cash today.

He was a tender little guy. After Raj died, Cash just wasn’t ever the same. I think it busted his heart. For years and years and years they slept together and hung out on the back deck or laid in the first rays of morning sun on the welcome mat in front of the studio together.

He just wasted away, glum and confused and broken-hearted.

It is a hard old life, buddy.  I know it is.

You will be missed.

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The wild woman of borneo called her mother Christmas day. It didn’t go well.

If you are nice, she will eat you alive. If you are mean you feel like you just beat up a five-year old and stole his little red wagon.

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So, the storms rage all around us. In between the heaving swells of the black sea we catch glimpses of great and terrible monsters, all razor-sharp teeth and menacing claws and low, moaning calls.

We pull our blankets around our shoulders and lean into the oars. She brews our tea in the lee of the gunwales and if there is any sugar left she will put some in and if there isn’t it still warms us.

Maybe the sky is a little bit lighter just over the horizon. It’s hard to make out.

But, yes, I think it is.

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I would be undone without her.

I don’t know how the rest of you manage.

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Merry Christmas! Batten Down The Hatches!

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