Doug: Happy Holidays again, friends! For many of us, family travels are prolonging the celebrations. With that in mind, we waited a day to do our annual query on our readers' reports on Christmas cheer received. So it's open for you this weekend -- what wonderful gifts (comics-related or otherwise) did you receive? And shoot -- if you gave something cool, tell that, too! Thanks in advance, as always, from both Karen and I for stopping by and making this a wonderful community.
Doug: As I mentioned the other day, our celebrations this year are falling over several days. In fact, I'll probably be back either late Sunday or on Monday with a follow-up report. Our "nuclear family" (that sounds so 1950s, doesn't it?) shared gift-giving yesterday. It was great, and please understand that in no way are we dreading our son's impending marriage; quite the contrary. But we were able to "do" Christmas one last time with just the four of us. I think everyone treasured the experience. In comics-related presents, I received the Hallmark Adam West Batman ornament, as well as a copy of Rob Kelly's Hey, Kids - Comics! paperback. I've heard nothing but great things about the latter, and am really looking forward to reading it over break. My "big gift", which came from my sons and future daughter-in-law was a soundbar for our family room television. It was really easy to hook up, and while we're still getting used to it and tinkering with some of the settings, I'll say that cosmetically it makes the room look wonderful. It replaces a large 5-disc changer that doubled as a receiver and DVD player, with six satellite speakers around the room. That the new soundbar is wireless and can operate other devices via bluetooth technology really cleaned the place up! I should also mention that I gave a treasure away, too. My oldest son was the recipient of the Fantastic Four Masterworks that reprints #s 51-60. I remarked to him that he might hold in his hands the single greatest 10-issue run in all of comics. High praise indeed.
Karen: Out here in the desert, it was just me and my hubby this year. We'd had enough of traveling, and everyone else was staying put too. But that was fine with us -we are happy just spending time together. My guy spoiled me with some terrific gifts this year. Nothing comics-related specifically, but I'll toss out a couple: this incredible Bruce Lee Hot Toys figure I have drooled over for ages, but am too much of a cheapskate to buy for myself; and this awesome Frankenstein bust with eyes that light up and has the voice of Dr. Frankenstein (Colin Clive) proclaiming, "It's alive! It's alive!" when you throw the switch in front (all accompanied by electronic buzzing sounds). We'd seen this at a convention two years ago and I really wanted it but did not pull the trigger. So my husband tracked it down. It's just perfect! He really outdid himself this year. What a guy.
Karen: Your turn!