Joshua Kennon Christmas 2013

Kennon-Green & Co. Fiduciary Financial Advisor, Wealth Management, Global Value Investing

We spent Christmas Eve this year with my in-laws, and Christmas morning over at my parent’s house having breakfast.  Unfortunately, with my sister and her family living a couple hundred miles away now, they weren’t able to be there.  (My mom and dad, not being able to stand not to see their grandkids, got in the car and surprised them that night, gifts in tow, spending almost a week with them.)  Instead, the family set a date for a follow-up second Christmas day, which was held this evening at the house.

[mainbodyad]I was thrilled we had agreed to host it because the temperature outside feels like it is -20° Fahrenheit (that is -28.89 Celsius for those of you outside the United States) thanks to the big snowstorm last night.  While it makes the forest outside look beautiful, I wasn’t eager to brave the elements.  I didn’t leave the comfort of home, with the fireplaces burning, the coffee brewing, and the oven churning out batches of enormous, golden-browned Christmas cookies.  

In fact, I spent the morning wrapped in a warm, soft hoodie, updating my household accounting records for the month of December now that the final dividends, interest, and other sources of income have been collected, while Aaron wrapped the gifts we picked up last week with my brother and sister-in-law after we saw Saving Mr. Banks (even though we setup the investment portfolios for the kids, it didn’t seem quite right not to have toys and physical presents, from Mario themed race cars to books to practice their reading).

Joshua Kennon Christmas 2013

Nestled comfortably inside the warm house while the snow storm and frigid temperatures outside turn the world into a winter wonderland …

Everyone ended up staying until around 1 a.m..  My parents arrived with huge boxes of pizza, the kids began to open their gifts; we raced cars, played Mario 3D and the remastered Legend of Zelda Windwaker on the Wii U, then survived battlefield amputations by my nephew, who was very eager to put his new hacksaw to work on the limbs of anyone who was within proximity, including himself.

Vinnie Christmas Saw

Maybe he’s been watching Civil War re-enactments of battlefield amputations? All I know is no one was safe from his saw, including himself.

Somehow, I was appointed judge in a fictional lawsuit between my niece and brother, who was claiming he was harmed by her beauty parlor massage equipment, which I used as an opportunity to explain the importance of adequate liability insurance before promptly finding for the plaintiff.  This was during my time on the Train Simulator, which had to be paused for the proceedings.

Train Simulator Joshua Kennon

We played half an hour of Train Simulator, in which I discovered I am wholly unequipped to properly conduct a locomotive under adverse weather conditions with my existing skill set. We also discovered that the two-and-a-half year old has one interest and one interest only: Repeatedly, and as loudly as possible, blowing the train whistle. Our trip across the London countryside was a hot mess.

There were piano concerts and a ribbon dancing ceremony.

Ribbon Twirling

I’m fairly certain my niece doesn’t quite know the difference between ribbon twirling and a martial art. The speeds at which she danced turned what was supposed to be a ribbon into a cat-of-nine-tails. We all watched as we braced for possible impact during her uncontrollable giggling.

Some of the other family members had broken off to play Monopoly at the dining room table.

Monopoly at Christmas Table

Some of the other members of the family played Monopoly while I was busy with my judicial and train conducting responsibilities.

Later, in between games of hide-and-seek, my niece made sure we had seen the newest Disney movie, Frozen, and upon discovering that we had not, had us watch “Let It Go” … as I laughed inside like Scrooge McDuck at this dollar printing machine churning out more money for me.  The nephew wanted to watch Mickey Mouse or Mater (from “Cars”).

We countered with the new trailer for the upcoming release of Maleficent, in which Angelina Jolie plays the legendary “Mistress of all Evil”, once again dipping into an old franchise to produce new profits for owners …

With everyone gone, exhausted but happy, we collapsed into bed.  Though we probably should have gone to sleep, we watched the American premier of Downton Abbey before finally shutting our eyes at nearly 4 a.m.  It was a wonderful day.