A great day. No, seriously, it was. Keep that in the forefront your mind, because much of this post is straight, full-on vent.
Wonderful company in Beast and Sparky, FIL, Gerb, and Alan. And then there's Katherine--my only blood relative besides Sparky in the house today. She needs to be spanked. I had high hopes for her this holiday. When she and Alan arrived yesterday she was in good spirits and generally was pleasant company. That continued for much of the morning today...until mealtime.
I am generally aware of the emotional currents in a room but not always clear where the whirlpools are developing until they have become riptides, but damn if today I didn't visibly watch Katherine commence with her poutiness. When Sparky reminded us, rather late in the visit, that we were going to play Scrabble, her eyes lit up (she L O V E S board games) and then she and Alan disappeared upstairs to pack up their overnight bags so they could take off for his mom's. There was glaring; she wanted to stay, he wanted to get to his mom's. I think the issue was that we should have mentioned game-playing earlier so she could participate. Her parting shot to Sparky was something like, "I'll play Scrabble with you next time, and I'll win" followed by a comment about being told not to be falsely modest about one's talents. And they were out the door.
I realize that we all have one relative that we want to keep in a closet, but she was unbearably rude to our friend today and not much more than civil with FIL, especially as the day wore on.
A telling moment was when she mentioned that the two of them (Katherine and Alan) have had couples' counseling as part of the adoption process they are going through, and she thinks the therapist is crap because "She keeps bringing up the same things over and over." Well...DUH! I bet I know which ones, too (it would be a guess--Katherine didn't share that much!).
We had a wonderful, fairly relaxing day spent with some of the people we love the most in the world, talked to most of our out-of-state family on the phone, were cheered by and cheery with them, got quite the haul of good gifts ... yet all I want to do is call Katherine tomorrow and read her the riot act for having the grace and tact of a shit-covered rock pitched through a stained-glass window. I am not fond of the concept of family feuds, but I'm rarin' to go on this one; I am so TIRED of her behavior. She is nearly 37 years old, a professional with an advanced degree, was raised by parents with some semblance of a clue as far as social behavior--and every time I spend time with her, I want to strangle her by the end of it. It's probably good that I work tomorrow, and we have electronics to set up and Thank You notes to write over the weekend so I'll be too busy to call. Cooling off periods are good.
To end on a happier note, the doorbell rang in the midst of yesterday morning's snow and I found on my snowy porch a delivery man with flowers. Thank you, Jenny. I love you, and I am grateful every day for you.
I don't want to brag or make the rest of you envious, but I have to say that my two best girlfriends are the BEST friends ever.