For almost two hours, my 11 year old daughter had been walking around the house with a notepad and pencil, looking very concerned. She stopped to take a break at the kitchen table and review her notes.
I asked her what she was doing, and she said she was compiling evidence for her investigation. Of course, I asked her what she was investigating…
She stared at her paper for a minute, thinking, and then said:
“Where were you the night before the night of Christmas Eve?”
Me: You mean Sunday night?
Her: Yeah. What were you doing that night?
Me: I was in the garage, drinking wine, writing a post about how brain-dead I was after working a long shift in that place.
Her: Hmm… So, maybe it was you then!
Me: It was me, what?
Her: Maybe you had too much wine, and got really hungry. But you didn’t want to go upstairs… (writes something down in her notebook)
Me: Go upstairs for what? What are you talking about?
Her: YOU ate the candy, didn’t you?!
Let me give you a little bit of insight into our “Christmas Conspiracy”, as the oldest minion has dubbed it.
See, I’ve been working some odd hours lately in a seasonal position at the mall. By the time I get off, I either have appointments to get to, grocery shopping to do, or am just so damn exhausted that there was no way I was doing any Christmas shopping (I also hadn’t shopped yet because we’re beyond broke and had to wait for our checks on the 20th to do anything). So I waited until the last minute (which fits perfectly with my Queen of Procrastination title anyway).
My step-mom offered to pick up the stocking stuffers when she went shopping for the kids earlier in the week. AWESOME! Anything extra that I don’t have to do for this sanity forsaken holiday is a huge help. When Saturday came around, The Manchild met me after work so that we could pick through the left-overs on the store shelves in a vain attempt to find things that would please the minions. With a small budget, and a few mai tai’s in me, we scoured the aisles endlessly. We managed to be pretty damn successful in a short amount of time, so we came home, entirely pleased with our little shopping venture.
That evening, step-mom came into the garage (where we were gloating about our awesomeness while smoking before putting the littlest minion to bed), with a cloth bag full of wrapped stocking stuffers and candy to be divided among the stockings. We set it off to the side and planned to bring it in after the munchkins were asleep so that they wouldn’t find our stash spot and decide to peek at the gifts that we had just brought home. Spoiler alert: It’s the closet downstairs in our bedroom.
We went to bed that night and completely forgot about the goody-bag sitting inside of the garage door.
The following day (Sunday), I had to be at work at 8am to open, and was scheduled until 4. Throughout the course of the day, other employees came and went. There was an endless barrage of irritated, yet hopeful last-minute shoppers asking the same questions. (I must have uttered the same few phrases about a hundred bajillion times in the course of my day.) I ended up being asked to stay until 8 because someone was too sick to stay and they couldn’t get anyone else to come in (of course not) and blah, blah, blah… We need any tiny amount of money that we can get right now, so of course I stayed.
If you have ever in your life had a job in the service industry during the holiday season, you know what this 12 hour experience was like. For those of you that have not, here’s a picture to help put this in perspective for you…
Needless to say, by the time I got home, I was mentally, emotionally, and physically drained. I hugged and kissed the kids, took off my shoes, poured a giant glass of wine, and began trying to drink away the pain in my body. (I was very successful, in case you were wondering.) I couldn’t have cared less about the fact that Christmas was a day and a half away.
Or that there was a bag of junk in the garage that still needed to go inside.
T’was the night before Christmas, when I finally thought about stockings. I grabbed the bag (The Manchild had finally brought it in) and began divvying up the presents. There were also three large candy canes in the bag. I found it odd that step-mom hadn’t gotten any other candy, but at the same time, vaguely remembered her going through an extensive list of sugar laden treats that she had purchased for them. But there was nothing there. Just the candy canes and a sucker stick with remnants of green candy on it.
I was done. I didn’t give the candy a second thought.
…until this afternoon, when I found my oldest conducting an investigation as to where the treats had gone.
This kid was in full blown detective mode. It reminded me of myself when I start asking the kids who ate the giant Butterfinger that was in the cupboard that I was saving to
devour after they went to bed crush and put into some cookies for them.
I found it extremely funny. She, however, was very upset that she had been gypped out of an incredible 3 hour sugar high by someone.
The Manchild found some chewed up sucker remnants in the backyard, so we had come to the conclusion that Dozer (our dumb dog) had found the bag and decided that it must have been a special mid-night treat meant just for him. I’m expecting to find confetti looking diarrhea in my backyard very soon, because there were a lot of Hershey’s Kisses in there from what I’m told…
She didn’t believe a word of it, and continued to ask questions. It was like a real life game of CLUE.
After a pretty intense round of interrogation by the oldest minion, she decided that – while I was still a suspect – I had probably not done it. Even though it was a toss-up between her brother and The Manchild, she came to the conclusion that it was dad, and he had just forgotten that he did it. Logical, I suppose… If he had Alzheimer’s or something. Or was a cynical asshole and got off on making kids sad.
He found the half bag of kisses that were left over, and told her to split them with her brother. She immediately dropped the whole thing.
She loves chocolate.