My stepdad sent me the pictures above with the caption "Why Christmas Comes Slowly." That's Dudley, their pet tortoise. We'll be visiting Dudley and the rest of the crew on Christmas Day. Dudley's species, by the way, can live up to seventy-five years, so Grandpa Mikey has already warned our kids that they will be enjoying Dudley at their own Christmas celebrations for many years to come.
The other picture is my folks' cat Pharaoh. If you follow the blog, you may remember Pharaoh as the kitten they rescued just as my Egyptian book The Red Pyramid came out. He's our Kane Chronicles mascot, although in this photo he doesn't seem to mind being Santa's helper . . . or Santa's napper.
Finally, a little video of Dudley racing to open his presents, with an assist from Chico the cat. I hope everyone enjoys a Christmas this leisurely!