Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Day After Christmas

It has been one of the happiest Christmases ever! More relaxed, and less stressed. Lots of time spent with family, with the whole family, all the kids and grandkids, and even the Beautiful Daughter-in-Law's (aka BDIL) extended family on Christmas Eve. The Texan and I went to Midnight Mass at Annunciation this year, the first year since he has been sick. Then, after a whole 5 hours of sleep, down to Big D to spend Christmas morning with the Littlest Grandson, Computer King, and BDIL, along with the LG's other grandparents. When we came home, we finally had time to open our gifts, then Lawyer Girl and I took a nap. The Texan, who had loved every minute of the celebrations, went to bed for 18 hours! It truly has been one of the happiest holiday's I can remember.

Today we are moving slowly and planning to relax A LOT! Our Wonderful Neighbor came over for morning coffee, I do have to go back to Dallas to retrieve my purse, and then the Texan and I are not planning to do much at all. After all, Santa brought me two great books to read. Do you think he knows my addiction to the written word?

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Three More Days!

Christmas is almost in sight; only the last-minute things remain to be done. The Texan's Golden Boy arrived in the Metroplex with his family; Lawyer Girl will be coming in soon. I have one present left to finish knitting (do-able), another gift card to buy, cookie dough made, ready to put into the oven, and lots of presents to wrap. Somehow, I don't even feel frazzled.

We kept the Littlest Grandson on Thursday and Friday while he was out of school but his parents had to work. He helped me make cookies, we saw the wonderful train display at Northpark, went on a long walk, and watched lots of cartoons. A very satisfying time had by all.

This is a time of great music for us, both at church and on the telly. I was talking with a friend of mine about how Christmas has changed for us over the years. As a child it was so exciting, filled with presents and family visiting; then it was a bit ho-hum until we had children of our own and could re-live our own childhoods with them, keeping the best of the traditions alive. Now, as we are in our 60's, Christmas has become quieter, more interior. We appreciate the spiritual significance of Advent and Christmas, enjoy the beauty of the church services, the beauty of the expressions through music and art and decoration. Presents are nice but not a focal point anymore, except for enjoying the little ones' excitement. I guess we do come full circle.

I wish all of you the joys of the preparation for Christmas, both the secular holiday and the holy day.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

The Little Shepherd

I'm off tonight to see the Littlest Grandson be a shepherd in his Christmas pageant! It should be fun. Last night was the Pastoral Care Christmas Party at Chez
Rozell. with lots of good food, wine-aritas and scrumptious hot buttered rum, and, most of all, love and laughter. It was my favorite kind of party, small, intimate, with dear friends.

We all needed the break from the sadness of losing our dear Janet. (In reading the blogs of our church friends this week, we all are grieving, in one way or another.) We will send her off with a glorious Requium (sp?) Mass on Saturday, cry some, give and get lots of hugs, and celebrate Janet's wonderful spirit. Then, on Sunday, is Lessons and Carols. But tonight is the night of the cutest Little Shepherd!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Advent II

This has been a a week of opposites! The music at the La Novella concert was breathtaking, so clear, so beautiful! It took me a while to get my country-music-listening ear to be able to hear the clear German chorales, but, oh when I did...!

Then, struggling to get all the tasks done for my classes, some Christmas shopping done, dealing with the Texan's holiday depression, and all the sadness of this time at our beloved church.

Our dear Senior Warden Janet is dying; they were not expecting her to get through last night. We had our beloved and wonderful Christmas English Tea yesterday afternoon as Janet was in the process of making her transition. She was the motivator and prime mover for this wonderful tradition of ours. It was bittersweet for me, having sat at the tea last year with our Rector's wife, who we also lost shortly thereafter. Our wonderful English/Aussie ladies are exhausted, numb, and heartbroken. And so am I.

Lord Jesus, are you sure that you want to be born into this broken world of ours? The beautiful Baroque music reminds me that you are coming. Oh, how we need you!

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Almost Advent

Ok, I can tolerate the Christmas Carols now - tomorrow is Advent 1, the beginning of the preparation for Christmas. My conference is over, there are only two more weeks of school(dead week and finals),and best of all, my Wonderful Neighbor came over today and helped me decorate! The Advent candle is all set to be lit tomorrow; I know how I am going to put out Christmas lights that I can put up, most of the shopping is done, and I should actually have time to make cookies this year. Hurrah!

As I went through all the decorations and picked out the ones to be put out this year, I had the most wonderful memories of my mother and father and Christmases past. I remember the one where my cousin Elaine and I were about 5, heard Santa and the elves putting out the presents, crept out where we could see shadows, and KNEW that Santa was there. My favorite grown-up Christmas was the one where we all went to Denver when my kids were about 10 and 12, both my brothers and families and my mom were there, as well as my cousin who came through the 16" snowfall in order to make Christmas dinner. We were snowed in for days!

Next week will start the wonderful musical events put on by Annunciation which I get to share with the Texan, who has taught me to truly love good music. We are so blessed to have an outstanding music director who has truly developed our whole church into a place of great music. This has become an important part of the holiday tradition for us.