On the whole, this was a lovely holiday. I got several books from Jonathan, including a collection of Connie Willis stories that were, not surprisingy, wonderful, and a Yeast Giant Microbe. I made applesauce. :)
I gave my mother-in-law a menorah pin, and my niece got a stuffed dragon whom she fell in love with. And maybe my favorite gift that I gave, for reasons beyond gift-giving - one of my husband's young cousins, age eleven, only learned how to read in the past year. He's a bright kid, but reading intimidated him.
What broke through? Comics. Manageable chunks of print and exciting pictures, and in highly interesting subjects. Last year, I gave him Marvel Ultimates Spiderman. And this year? Marvel Ultimates Fantastic Four. He loves Fantastic Four, and so, instead of watch football with his father or playing poker with the rest of the boys, he stayed in the room with the little girls and read the trade paperback. Not quickly, but he clearly enjoyed it. I loved seeing my niece play with her dragon, but watching Benjamin? Was special. And seeing his mother look so happy? Even more special.