Chapter Twenty

Christmas Eve Day

It was finally the day before Christmas and all the boys were very excited. We cut down a Christmas tree and decorated it yesterday. My plan today was to wear them out so they would be asleep as soon as their heads hit the pillows. That way, there was no chance of any of them peaking as I unloaded their gifts from the camper.

After our morning tickle wake-ups, the boys took their showers while I made their breakfasts. The boys did the dishes while I took my shower.

Davey and Billy decided to build snow forts while I took the tractor and cleared the driveway down to the lane leading up to the lodge. The boys' forts were done by the time I parked the tractor back at the cabin. I decided that we would hike up to the lodge. Once inside, we immediately smelled hot apple cider and cocoa warming on the stove and Christmas cookies baking in the oven. The boys dashed into the kitchen. John was relaxing by the fireplace.

"All set for your first Christmas with your sons, Doug?"

"I have dreamed about it my whole life. I would fantasize about how my first Christmas would be if I had a son of my own. Now I have two wonderful boys and it will be twice as thrilling for me. My plan for today is to tire the boys out so they will fall asleep as soon as they hit their pillows."

"That's quite a tall order since they are always full of energy." John chuckled.

"Tell me about it. That's why I hiked down here with them from the cabin."

"Are you sure it will not be you that will be more tired tonight?"

"Well, I'm counting on them spending most of the day outside with TJ and Tommy. If I let them off my leash, I hope they will burn themselves out by tonight."


Just then, TJ and Tommy burst through the front door. The smells in the lodge grabbed their attention and they took off to the kitchen. Terry and Brenda came in a few minutes later.

"With all those wonderful aromas in here, I guess I don't have to ask where the boys are. I better go and help Betty." Brenda chuckled.

"I wonder if there will be anything left for us by the time the boys are done." Terry laughed.

"I'm not sure. I guess it depends on how good Betty and Brenda thinks we have been all year." John said.

"Well, I guess that will leave me out." I laughed.

"Me too," John said.

"I'm still fairly new and I think Betty still likes me," Terry said trying not to laugh.

A few minutes later, all 4 boys came out of the kitchen carrying trays of cookies and drinks. Each boy already had cookie crumbs around their lips.

"So boys, are you done testing and sampling the cookies?" John asked.

"Well, I think we still have to sample each new tray that comes out of the oven," TJ suggested with a giggle.

Everyone laughed and Brenda gave him a playful swat on the bum after he set down his tray of cookies on the table.

"I think you '7' boys should go play outside while we 'women' finish up in the kitchen," Betty said trying to act like a stern grandmother.

"AWWWW," We all said at the same time and then laughed.

Betty and Brenda shewed everyone outside as soon as the drinks and cookies were gone. John went to work clearing the lanes around the campground with the snow blower on the lawn tractor. Terry went off to help the boys build snow castles around the campground. I hiked back to the cabin to get the tractor to blow the lane from the lodge to the highway.

Everyone gathered back at the main lodge for lunch.

Each family decided to do their own things for the rest of the day. After loading up the fireplace and woodstoves, I took the boys down to the river through the tunnel in the basement of the cabin. The river was solidly frozen over so there was no threat of anyone falling through the 30cm of ice.

I was dark by the time we staggered back up to the cabin. The cabin was still nice and toasty warm inside. There was a note on the kitchen table from Betty.

"I had a feeling you boys would be too tired to make dinner when you came back so dinner is in the oven. All you have to do is heat it up."

I heated up, the wonderful dinner Betty left for us while the boys got out of their wet clothes. Davey went around adding more wood to the fireplace and woodstoves. The boys came into the kitchen giggling. They were only wearing shorts, t-shirts and slippers. Davey tried to play 'innocent' and said the reason was because it was so warm in the cabin. I suggested that we not load up the woodstoves before we go to bed. Both boys yelled out "NO!!" and then giggled.

"Daddy, can we go out and soak in the hot tub before we go to bed?" Billy asked.

"I think that would be a perfect way to end the day, Billy?"

The boys cleaned up the dishes while I took my evening shower. When I came back downstairs, the boys were giggling on the sofa with just their towels around their waists.

"I'm guessing you boys are only wearing those towels with nothing underneath."

"Yep," they giggled together.

As soon as the cold outside air hit the boys' bare skin, they ran to the hot tub and jumped in. There was steam all around us as we soaked in the tub. It was a clear night and we could see millions of stars in the night sky. We spent about an hour in the tub before the boys started to yawn.

We ran back to the cabin and warmed up at the fireplace. I went to the kitchen to make their evening snack.

As the boys started to fall asleep on the sofa, I would carry them up to their bed. I tucked them in and rubbed their back until they were in a deep sleep. I got dressed, went out to the camper to get the boys' presents and place them under the tree. I fell asleep as soon as my head hit the pillow.

Replacement Evil Editor's Notes:

I believe that this is definitely the calm before the storm; I think that the Evil Author In Training Silas111 is setting us up for something, what I am not sure.  While you wonderful readers are trying to figure out what is coming next, I am going to go read what is coming next.

Have fun waiting,