"Happy Christmases are all alike; every unhappy Christmas is unhappy in its own way." -- So says Ann Patchett, one of my favorite writers, by way of Tolstoy, and I tend to agree. This Salon piece is a reminiscence of Christmases past with her lightly dysfunctional, blended family, including a whole fleet of field mice and a suitcase full of underwear. (Salon is a subscription service -- view the ad to read the entire article.)

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