“Come in, — come in! and know me better, man! I am the Ghost of Christmas Present. Look upon me! You have never seen the like of me before!”
I’m going to be completely honest with you, by yesterday evening I was filled with glee because I was glad Christmas was over….and by “Christmas” I mean all the buying of gifts, wrapping, baking, cleaning, and so on. I really wish Santa WAS real, it would save me a lot of work. It’s fun and all, but only to a certain extent, and then the stress kicks in and you start to wonder if the gifts are okay and if they will be received with gladness and if the children will be healthy and then it becomes your time of the month on top of it all, which explains why you were grumpy that one night when the kids had friends over and it was all you could do not to go in your room and shut the door because your head felt as if it would explode…….
But then your husband helps you find the presents in all the secret hiding spots and tells you numerous times that you did a great job and gives you little kisses and it’s Christmas Eve and the boys keep trying to get up without ever even going to sleep and you say over and over to yourself in that still small voice, “remember these moments”…….because you know even if you do at this moment wish things were a little quieter– someday you just might wish things were back to chaotic for an hour or two. Maybe.
On Christmas Eve we crave cinnamon rolls and thanks to my friend April we also made orange rolls for the first time and boy were they heavenly.
I totally fell in love with The Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens. I’ve seen the movie through the years and have read the book a few times but this year I became a true and devoted fan of the story. It’s so rich and beautiful. It has everything; loss, darkness, greed, selfishness, ghosts, hauntings, music, bitter cold, snow, old city life, memorable characters, lessons learned, truth, love, nostalgia, joy, smiles, laughter, and a HAPPY ENDING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! So I read the book again, which of course is the very best way to experience the story, and then watched two of the movies and I watched them with as much full attention as I could (without my phone next to me).
And lest you think my opening confession was rather Scrooge-like, let me clarify that I wholeheartedly love Christmas for what it truly is supposed to be; giving and receiving, yes, but also heart and soul, togetherness, beauty, family and friends. Those are the qualities of Christmas that I love the most, & I know you do, too.
“For it is good to be children sometimes, and never better than at Christmas, when its mighty Founder was a child Himself.”
“He was consious of a thousand odours floating in the air, each one connected with a thousand thoughts, and hopes, and joys, and cares, long, long, forgotten.”
“I have always thought of Christmastime, when it has come round…as a good time; a kind, forgiving, charitable, pleasant time; the only time I know of, in the long calendar of the year, when men and women seem by one consent to open their shut-up hearts freely, and to think of people below them as if they really were fellow-passengers to the grave, and not another race of creatures bound on other journeys.”
(Caleb was feeling under the weather and buried himself in blankets and pillows as he watched TV) soooo cute
Ethan is home from college and my heart is content to have all the children with us again.
waking up the sleepy heads
We unwrapped all the presents and then got ready for Church.
Seth had a candy cane in his mouth and Ethan had crest white strips on his teeth. I didn’t know this until on the way to church when I had time to study the photos and ask questions.
I thought Sarah’s Christmas hair was adorable. I put it in two pigtails, pulled the hair through half way, and then pinned on gold bows. She of course, hated it, but I told her too bad. And with a compromise, she didn’t have to wear a fancy dress.
camera heart gravitates toward the child who doesn’t get to attend church with us during the school year anymore….it was so nice to see him in the pew as I looked over at my sons in a row.
Rich and Grace both had small parts in the service so they sat in front. To be honest, I made Rich come back to sit with me as his part wasn’t until almost the end of the service and I didn’t want to sit there alone without my husband the whole time.
Caleb got a hug…….
Sarah found a listening ear…………
Grace read from Luke chapter 2……….
Best friends and brothers in Christ.
(Michael took a photo of the family for me but I’m not going to post it until next month (year) because I never sent out Christmas cards, therefore I am sending out New Years cards with a family photo and I don’t want to show anyone the picture yet or it will be boring to send out in the mail).
After church I made a ham dinner and then was filled with the feeling that all was accomplished and I could rest. It was a most blessed evening of being so very relaxed with all the children around us.
I’m in the midst of the the book on top, which is something I bought a few years ago but just got around to reading. It is very very good (high quality writing). Sigrid Undset also wrote Kirsten Lavransdatter which is an amazing book. The rest of the titles are from my husband based on my explicit instructions.
How thankful I am through it all, for the blessings of our life, the warmth, the joy, the endless little surprises from living with children, and for most of all, my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, and the eternal life He has given. God is so good and we are surrounded by a cloud of witnesses that prove all of what He truly means to us. I’m so glad He loves us just the way we are.
“I am as light as a feather, I am as happy as an angel, I am as merry as a schoolboy. I am as giddy as a drunken man. A merry Christmas to everybody! A happy New Year to all the world! Hallo here! Whoop! Hallo!”
“His own heart laughed: and that was quite enough for him.”
PS, Penny, I wrote this post for you. (because you encouraged me). xoxoxo loves.