Phase one of the Christmas odyssey is complete. Today we wrapped, packaged, and addressed all of the gifts we’re mailing to friends and family. Laralee will brave the post office tomorrow, and they’ll be on the way.

Next is phase two: the Christmas cards. I’m putting together my list and checking it twice, and printing out hundreds of address labels. On Tuesday my professionally-printed custom cards (!) are due to arrive, and we’ll spend the evening stuffing envelopes. The post office loves that we spend a hundred dollars a year on stamps alone. And I’ve grown to love the pre-sticky envelopes, which may cost five times more than old-school lick envelopes but sure make up for it in ease.

Finally, phase three: gifts for the kids. For some reason we don’t get everything picked out, bought, and wrapped for our own kids until sometime in the evening of the 24th every year. But we’ve got some good ideas this year, and now all that remains is putting the plan in motion.

Ho ho ho!