It was only cloudy when I got up this morning, but the skies still looked gloomy. I cheered things up with breakfast and one of my favorite holiday specials, Emmett Otter's Jug Band Christmas. Emmett and his ma are facing a bare Christmas until they hear about a big local talent contest. They both sacrifice the things that allow them to get work in order to be able to join the show. The contest has a surprising conclusion...as does what happens when they head home afterwards.
I worked early enough that I was able to ride to work and arrive dry. Thankfully, I ended up spending the day inside; the head cashier handled the carts today. I did end up stuck in the register twice, but I mainly helped hang gift cards (both on the mall kiosk and a smaller Christmas display) and shelve candy. It was busy, but never really overwhelmingly so. Most people are likely waiting to do their major shopping over the weekend.
The rain had started by the time I headed home. It wasn't the deluge we're getting as I write this, but it was a nice, steady shower. I was fairly damp when I dragged the trash can back up the path and got in my front door.
Changed into regular (and dry) clothes, then worked on the buttercream icing for the cupcakes. This time, the icing came out perfectly, just smooth and creamy enough. I spread them on the cupcakes and sprinkled them with colored sugar. I only had one box left from the Martha Stewart pack of cookie boxes I bought ages ago. Charlie's cupcakes went in that. Dad's cupcakes went in a shoe box I covered with red-striped tissue paper. Taped up Mom and Anny's boxes and got them ready to ship out (hopefully) tomorrow.
Watched A Christmas Carol as I worked. This is the classic 1951 British version starring character actor Alistair Sim as one of the best Scrooges on record. Other than a greater emphasis on the past sequence and showing Scrooge's downfall, this one sticks fairly close to the book. I like the truly spooky sequence with Marley and the wandering ghosts and the finale, where he scares the daylights of Mrs. Dilber the charwoman dancing around like a madman. If you're a fan of A Christmas Carol, this is one that you'll want to track down. It's in the public domain and can likely be found for cheap on DVD or online.
Worked on writing for a little bit after I got everything washed and organized. Lady Gerda takes Leia and Luke to a hot house on her property where they grow the exotic flowers that are exported off-planet. Luke tries to pick a rose, but the thorns stab him. Gerda shows him how to cut one and gives one to him and one to Leia.
Broke for dinner at 6. Made tuna-noodle casserole on the stove top while watching a couple of holiday sitcom episodes. In the first season of Silver Spoons, Ricky is hoping to have "The Best Christmas Ever" with his dad Edward. He lets a little boy who comes to his house asking for a job help him hang ornaments, but the kid ends up taking food from the basket his grandfather sent. He follows the child...and discovers that his father is out of work and that he and his parents are living in a cave. Ricky and Edward do everything they can to make the family's holiday a little happier.
Balki and Larry are also looking forward to the holidays in "A Christmas Story" from the second season of Perfect Strangers. Larry's only been talking about Christmas with his family in Wisconsin since June. He's bitterly disappointed when a snowstorm cancels their travel plans. Balki tries to cheer up his cousin with gifts and a spindly tree.
Maybe the traveling snafu is why Larry opted for a party on Christmas Eve in the fourth season episode "The Gift of the Mypiot." Balki invites his boss Mr. Gorpley, who keeps insulting everyone within firing range. The others are ready to toss Gorpley into the cold, but it turns out that he never had a nice Christmas until Balki gave him one.
Finished the night online with another Christmas Carol, the 1970 musical Scrooge. I go into further details on this one at my Musical Dreams Movie Reviews blog.
Incidentally, that rain that started at work has continued in one way or another for the rest of the day. It's coming down pretty hard now as I write this; they were talking about possible flooding on the news. It also makes things feel rather cozy in here, with the rain pattering on the windows and the tree glowing across from me.