This time of year, I often recall fond memories of opening presents on Christmas morning. Our father was a small business owner, and I’m sure some years the finances were difficult, but we never knew on Christmas. But, we did know that certain things needed to be done before the first gifts could be opened.

I’m sure it wasn’t ever year, but it seemed to be often that our family took one or two of the kennel cleaning shifts over the holidays. When you have 100 dogs and cats boarding, while their owners are skiing or warming up on a tropical beach, the animals need to be fed and exercised first thing in the morning, and each living quarters cleaned up. I believe it was one of these holiday mornings that a cocker spaniel, named “Buddy”, squeezed out between the cage and my leg, and when I cornered her in the kennels, she took a chunk out of my right index finger.

The other mandatory delay, every year, even in recent years, when Dad would come over to watch my boys open gifts, was to wait until the camera, always on a tripod, was recording. Never did a year go by that Dad failed to record the entirety of the egregious excess of capitalism and generosity that was displayed on Christmas morning.

Now we have the rest of our lives to sort through these and the thousands of other videos, and recall all of the wonderful memories we created.

We love you Dad! Merry Christmas!

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