I was waken from my couch slumber by gentle shaking. I groggily opened my tired eyes to see my Momstanding there, smelling of friend chicken.
"Dinner is ready, Taylor." She told me before turning and heading back to the kitchen.
I layed there for a moment, trying to process everything. Finally, I realised what she said. With a bit of effort, I pulled my light weight body to my feet and followed my mother's previous path to the kitchen.
The whole family was at the table pursuing conversations with different family members. A hustle and bustle surrounded the table and every now and then, a flung pea from Mackie or Zoe.
From bits and pieces of what I heard from Ike's voice, he was talking about cars with Zac and my Dad. Jessica was instructing Avery on the fine art of staying INSIDE the lines with her coloring.
Mackie was giggling at the randomly flung peas and poor little Zoe was trying as hard as she could to keep up but with Mom sitting beside her, it was very rare that she got to make a shot.
I sat down in the empty seat between Jessica and Zac, before filling my plate with fired chicken, peas, mashed potatoes, and a bread roll from the warm bowl that sat in the middle of the table.
Standing up, I retrieved a glass of milk before setting it back down and everyone getting quiet.
We quickly said our family dinner prayer and started eating. I enjoyed the home cooked meals. It definately let you know what you were missing when you were out on the road, thousands of miles away from home, and only eating fast food or whatever came along the highway first when you were hungry.
Avery and Jessica were the first ones to rinse their dishes in the sink and Mom followed them shortly with Mackie and Zoe's plate.
I stood up after she did and took her empty plate and glass with mine to the sink to be rinsed and put in the dishwasher.
"Thank you Taylor." She gave me a motherly kiss on the cheek before taking my two youngest siblings by the hand and leading them off to bed, mild protests coming from little Mackie's department.
I sighed and headed into the living room. Jessica and Avery were in the floor, pulling out the crayons and battered coloring books. I relaxed onto the couch and watched them in silence for a while.
Avery finally looked up at me with wide blue eyes.
"Tay, you wanna help us color?" She held out a crayon for me, to gesture her eagerness.
"Sure. Who am I coloring?" I looked at the Barbie coloring book and cringed. Yech. The national 7'2" negative role model for young girls. How wonderful. At least it wasn't Britney Spears or the Spice Girls or something of that nature. Both probably had the same percentage of plastic.
"Ken, silly." She answered me.
"Oh yeah. Silly me. I'm so goofy." I overacted and sat down on the floor by my little sisters before taking a purple crayon and coloring Kenny-pooh's tux. Gag me with a wax crayon already.
His shirt was going to be red and neon green striped. Mr. Ken was going pimpin' tomorrow and was definately dressed for the occassion.
I drew on a little pink cowboy hat and looked up to see my sisters raising their eyebrows at my "Daring" fashion statement for Barbie's playmate.
"Umm..he looks cool!" I tried to cover my little carried away act.
"Yeah..real nice...."Jessica looked as if she was considering having me committed to the local insane asylum.
I just shrugged and gave Ken's convertible a leopard skin interior.
"Taylor, hand over the crayons." Jessica commanded.
"No buts. Hand them over." She took them from me brutally and demanded my departure.
I faked sulking until I was out of her field of vision.
Then I felt free to laugh outloud.
"Pimpin' Ken's House of Shagging". I falsely advertised aloud.
Oh that would be the day.
I continued laughing until I reached the room, pushing the door open and seeing Zac and Isaac on the bed talking. They immediatly stopped when I entered the room.
"What?" I asked.
"Nothing. Just something you don't know about." Isaac answered.
"Gee Ike. Glad you included me. Why can't I know?" I asked.
"Coz you weren't at the party."
"What are you trying to say by that?"
"That you weren't at the party. And for us to include you in the conversation, we would have to tell you the complete events of it, and that would be a waste of time."
"Tell me anyway."
"Isaac, don't make me show Tasha your old journal." I threatened.
Ike's eyes widened in horror.
"I would." I smiled smugly and crossed my arms, knowing that I had won.
Isaac rolled his eyes and started filling me in. And they say only girls gossip. Humph!
Turns out that BoyWonder and his miniature accomplice had came into the party and headed straight for the punch.
Zac had downed about 2 small glasses of the Hawaiian spiked punch while Ike had only sipped at a glass before seeing a familiar face in the crowd and deserting the table to mingle with the crowd.
Zac had left the table at about the same time when Lea beckoned him over to where she was standing by some new girl.
She introduced the girl to Zac as "Lindsay, my desperate cousin from Ohio".
Lindsay had been embarassed at that but it turned out that she and Zac hit it off really well. Well enough to kiss under the mistletoe anyway.
Isaac had hung out with his friends Brad and Drew before he recognized Tasha and started talking with her.
After that, both boys had quite a few cups of punch and couldn't remember anything from the punch bowl to the time they got home at 4 in the morning.
Sounded like a classic Tulsan Christmas party to me.