GALLERY: Christmas Phase Two (Christmas Day)

Disclaimer (1537!): meat and music content ahead!

It has been an incredibly busy week here at Chez LeBrain. They tell me it’s Saturday. I’ve lost all track of time. The first week of my holidays are gone! I have a feeling that the next week will be filled with lots of music….

After our annual family Christmas Eve dinner/gathering, we re-convened for Christmas Day. My Grandma’s 90th Christmas was also her first since breaking her leg in the summertime. She did awesome! Another amazing Christmas, all finished. Hard to believe.

On to the good stuff!

First up: the fun stuff. Some Kiss dolls. Is it Ace and Peter? Or is it Tommy and Eric? Who knows! A Kiss keychain to boot. Got some Transformers too. Should I open up the rare Treadshot figure? Or no? I can’t decide! Jen also bought me a Transformers pen with a light in it that acts like a Bat signal…but it’s a Bee signal!

Some assorted goodies…

That Fart game looks interesting.

Finally got the game Risk: Legacy.  Interesting twist on this one.  It must always be played by the same group of players.  Changes you make to the game are permanent.  What you do in game 1 may come back to haunt you in game 6.  Cards and the board itself are modified permanently as you go.  Most elements of the game are completely secret until you reach the point where you can break seals on additional instructions.  Cool eh?

Lastly, the music!  Here we go.

The first five Zep remasters!  Holy Zep overload!  These are all doubles.  Queen Live at the Rainbow ’74 — also a double.  Dio live in ’93, another double.  Several CD/DVD sets:  Bon Jovi New Jersey deluxe (yes!!)  with 2 CDs and a DVD.  Journey’s Escape Tour CD + DVD set.  (Listening that one right now, actually.)  Whitesnake Live in ’94 is another CD + DVD set.  Then some new music: Foo Fighters and AC/DC’s Rock Or Bust!  I really like the packaging on the AC/DC disc.  Can’t wait to hear it.

Last but certainly not least:  ZZ Top’s The Complete Studio Albums 1970-1990.  10 CDs, baby!  As if all that Zeppelin wasn’t enough, now this!  Thank you, Mrs. LeBrain’s Mom, for this one!  I only had one of these albums before, which is Eliminator.  Some of these discs are available separately with bonus tracks, but that’s OK: this box set is the only place you can get several of these Top albums in their original mix.  Remember in the 80’s when they remixed and re-released the Top back catalogue?  Those 80’s mixes have persisted on CD for a long time.   This box set represents the first time you could listen to albums like Rio Grande Mud in their original form on CD.  I like that very much.


  1. Man, that Bumblebee pen signal thingy looks ace! I’d have the battery on that zapped already! Ha! Looks like a good haul … and the music goods look special. You don’t need me to tell you that the ZZ Top stuff is incredible. Those first 6 albums in particular. Oooft!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Yup – I hear that. I had initially unknowingly got my hands on a few of the 80s mixes. Sakes. But have the originals now and it makes a real difference. I’ll look forward to reading all about them, Mike (when you do the ZZ Top series, of course – hint hint)


        1. And NOW I have the resources to do such a series!

          I’d still like to pick up the ZZ Top 6-Pack to get those 80’s mixes…more as a curiosity and collector’s item. Low priority though.


        2. Definitely a curiosity and I can understand wanting to pick ’em up. I’ve listened to them a few times since picking up the original mixes … for no other reason than to shake my head and ask “why?”

          Good ol’ WB – someone there thought “hold up! You know what would be great …”

          Liked by 1 person

        3. “Why”? I call it George Lucas Disease! The idea that you can improve a classic, delete the classic, and everybody will forget it in favor of the “new improved” version. Horse shick, I says!

          Liked by 1 person

    1. Good question. I’ve committed Jen and her mom. Apparently her mom is pretty vicious when it comes to board games, which sounds to be just the kind of player that this game needs!


      1. If you take the game to the cottage, I might be convinced to play. I love the idea of a game that goes on….and on….and on…
        I’m not convinced that Jen’s mom is a vicious game player. This is the person who didn’t want to steal a gift in the gift game! And that is the object of the game!


        1. Well we would certainly welcome a fourth! But you’d have to commit for the long haul. I don’t think the game allows for new players to jump in and out, although I haven’t opened it yet.


        1. They don’t any more? I could have sworn I’d seen them…maybe not…no one around me likes the chocolate and fruit flavoured combos. I say, give ’em ‘ere!


  2. Holy crap Dude, that is mind-boggling! Toys! More toys! And the MUSIC! That ZZ set has been on the radar for a looooong time! Still haven’t taken the plunge yet, though, glad you got it (seconding the request for reviews!). The Zeps on CD are also cool – you can rip ’em to your MP3! That’s the only (trust me, the ONLY) downside to having them on LP, I can’t rip ’em to take with me. Holy crap though, man. Queen, Dio, Journey too, and on and on…

    Only one question: where’s the jazz? ;)

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yeah I don’t see any jazz here. I’m slowly making my way through. The Alice Cooper you sent me was EXCELLENT by the way. I have listened to the CD version and I have to tackle the blu next. Lots of surprises in that setlist and Alice was at the top of his game too.


  3. Also, I know some guys from high school that would’ve lost their minds over that Risk game.

    Come to think of it, if they’re even close to the same people they were back then, they probably already have done just that.

    Liked by 1 person

        1. Me too. No two people will have the same Risk Legacy board. We’re going to play the first game in a couple weeks, I think.

          I’ve read a lot of online reviews of this game, and they all really try to avoid spoilers. Nobody wants to spoil what is in those envelopes!

          I do know that one reviewer found, hidden in the packaging of the game, an envelope that said “NO NOT OPEN. EVER.” So of course his gaming group eventually decided to open it…but I don’t want to know what’s inside.


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