First, we turn on some Christmas music, bundle up the kids and head out to the Christmas tree lot. We wander through the maze of evergreens, listening to the kids laugh and chase each other. Then Violet, at top speed, clotheslines herself across the face with the wire tree fence. We find the girl in a wailing heap on the ground, her lip fat and bloody, a wire-shaped welt forming across her cheek. We try to go home for ice and ibuprofen. Her Christmas spirit undaunted, Violet refuses to leave without a tree. So we lash the first halfway decent pine to the roof as her lip swells and the bruise starts to look like someone whipped her with a hickory switch. After that, it seems only right to go get ice and french fries.
And that is how french fries (preferably waffle) will become part of our Christmas tradition. Next year it’s Graham’s turn to maim himself.