Our housekeeper came on the 24th, and Doright Manor was spotless by the time she left: Tiles gleamed, faucets sparkled, and countertops shone. Studly Doright and I enjoyed Christmas Day and Boxing Day in a clean castle. Then the grandchildren arrived, along with the jolly mess that accompanies them everywhere they roam.
Within minutes of the kids’ arrival at midnight on Sunday the house looked like a violent windstorm had blown through. Suitcases exploded flinging clothing hither and yon, chairs that do not normally recline somehow morphed into loungers, and our cabinets were emptied of anything edible.
And this was all before the gifts were opened. Once that occurred, Doright Manor disappeared beneath acres of brightly colored wrapping paper, ribbons, and bows. There might’ve been actual books, gadgets, and toys in the pile, I’m just not sure they’ll ever be located.
Thankfully the weather here in the Florida panhandle has been perfect for exploring the outdoors this week. The kids spent hours riding the mini-bike and motorcycle that Studly (a.k.a. Poppa) fixed up for them in the weeks before their arrival. The property surrounding the manor provided a perfect track for our budding bikers.
The crew headed home on New Year’s Day leaving behind a trail of detritus and memories. The house might look like we’ve lost a rousing game of Jumanji, but it was worth every second.