burvil slept until 11 on christmas morning.
because she'd been kept up by the sound of traffic the night before when she slept in the barracks with all us girls, she wound up spending christmas eve on the sofa in the living room and slept like the dead.
'the kids can't get to their stockings,' giggled debo, 'because their grandmother's sleeping under the christmas tree!'
we all tried our darnedest and completely failed not to make a racket, eating breakfast at a whisper in the room next to where she slumbered. then the whole family, save gran, went back up to the barracks and sat and giggled and chatted and read for whole hours on end, waiting for her to wake up.
knowing that when she did, she'd likely kill us all for letting her sleep so long.
as it was, when she finally awoke, the refrain for the day was, 'i'm mad at all of you!' because we'd let her get the sleep she needed. because she suspected we'd had enormous fun without her. (it's a family-wide phenomenon: this irrational fear that the time of everyone's life will be had in one's absence.)
during breakfast, as we sat speaking in hushed tones- shhhhhhhhing my father repeatedly because his level of general excitement is the antithesis of quiet- a horrible thought had occurred to me. what if burvil is dead? it was a horrible thought i'd felt absolutely dreadful having even had.
only later would it be discovered that we had each and every one of us been stricken by that thought and we had each and every one of us, independently, at various points throughout the morning, gone in to verify that burvil was truly sleeping. she was, in fact, alive.