After we did our final stealth 12 Days of Christmas “Drops”, it was time for the festivities.
We started our evening with a gorgeous feast prepared by the men. Our traditional fare of lamb, roasted potatoes, baby peas and greek salad. My friend Carol provided the dessert of pecan pie. It was divine. Just like mom makes. (All that was missing was Mom,Dad, Seth, Thalia, Luke, Christina, Sandra and Samuel!)
Auntie Shona and Gracie set a magical table for us.
Ella joined us at the table and was very pleased with herself. Gracie wore this same little dress for her first Christmas. We call it her “Santa Baby” dress. (Incidentally, Gracie was exceedingly fond of that song when she was about 2.)
After dinner the kids were saying that they didn’t feel as “Christmassy” as usual. Maybe it was the lack of snow but we decided some fun random acts of kindness would fix that. At first we were gung ho to jump on the paying off of layaways wagon, but our local Walmart was already closed so that put the kibosh on that. So we drove to McDonalds and parked strategically so we could zip in front of someone to pay for their order and add a little treat to it. We were hoping to nab a large family and we waited and waited for one but happily all the large families seemed to be safe at home. Finally we chose our victim.When we told the cashier what we were doing she was so excited with us- it made it even more fun. As we zoomed away, the kids said all the right things, Gracie (glowing), “that was fun! I feel so happy”. Gabe (radiant) “Now it really feels like Christmas!” Finny (beaming sheepishly) “I cried!”. It was so fun that we went across town to another McDonalds to do it again. Definitely will become a new tradition. Not just on Christmas either. (The boys passing the time “styling” Gracie’s hair while we waited for our “victim”.)
Then it was time for the Christmas play. The kids’ version while entertaining and creative, was…well….not seasonally appropriate. In that at the end of it, the living room was littered with “dead” bodies. Which does not really say, Feliz Navidad and peace on earth. But they had fun.
When I objected to the notable lack of spirituality in their skit, (the children were most offended), Auntie Shona the Primary President Extraordinaire came to our rescue, and led the children in a stellar performance of the Nativity.
Here are Mary and Joseph on their humble donkey making their way to Bethlehem.
Here is the shepherd, tending his sheep (oh how I laughed)
The angel Gabriel exhorting said shepherd to be not afraid
The babe in a community fair trade manger…
..was delighted with the gift from the shepherd
The 2 wise men bearing their gifts (Benj was the Eddie Murphy of this play, he pretty much played everything).
The bemused babe in her swaddling clothes/toga loved her manger so much that she stayed in it, playing happily with her gold, frankincense, and myrrh while we ate dessert.
After we sang some carols, it was time for the opening of one gift. The kids each got a book they really wanted. Here is Finny clutching his to his bosom.
And then time for Auntie Shona to read “The Night Before Christmas”. This photo makes me laugh. Auntie Shona gave us this book many years ago and it was so good to have her in her rightful place reading it.
Santa and the Reindeer were provided for/bribed…
Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!