Christmas at the Machados' has always been anything but traditional. (For years, our most honored ritual was drinking pina coladas on the beach on Xmas morning. The simple reason being: "cuz we can.")

This year our family decided to forego buying presents for each other (with the exception of my 18-month-old nephew), as well as sitting down for some cliched turkey meal. (This was after conceding that no other food could possibly interest us as much as the shortbread cookies sitting on our kitchen counter, and therefore, we'd be wasting our time pretending to care about protein.)

All in all, it was a wonderfully self-indulgent Christmas. See highlights below.

- My Christmas Eve dinner: A few slices of processed ham and a handful of Doritos. And of course, shortbread cookies.

- My favorite present that wasn't mine: My nephew's rocking horse. It has the mechanics of a mechanical bull (i.e. it's bouncy and creates a rubberband-like, circular, back-and-forth motion), and is therefore, ahem, very pleasurable.

- My Christmas day entertainment: Two hours of "Teen Mom" on MTV. My stepmom, brother and I gathered around the television to critique the disfunction of the reality show's characters, relishing in the fact that they put our own disfunction to shame.

- My Christmas evening: In lieu of a crackling fireplace, my family and I sat in front of a 70-foot screen at the Ward Center Megaplex for the new George Clooney movie, followed by wine, maitais and a discussion about cougars (the women, not the cats).

In conclusion, it was a very blessed holiday indeed.

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