Monday, December 28, 2009

White Christmas

I am an unapologetic lover of winter, snow makes me as giddy as my five-year-old. So we were all dismayed to see rain fall on top of all the lovely snow that had accumulated when we woke on Christmas Day. We were much gratified to see that rain turn into snow a few hours later and keep on snowing for days!

This whole season since the beginning of Advent has been magical this year. We added elements little by little as the weeks progressed. The day the kids awoke to the manger set up and lit in the dark was very special. Whatever we did the rest of the weeks leading up to Christmas included the manger scene and baby Jesus. When we were making gingerbread cookies one day, I told Puck we would give some as gifts to our friends. His eyes lit up at the word "gift," and he immediately said; "Gift for baby Jesus." He had asked me about the three kings earlier that day, and we must have talked about the presents they brought with them. As soon as the first batch of cookies was cool enough, he carefully carried two gingerbread men over to the manger, where they have kept watch over baby Jesus ever since.

The night of the Solstice we had our first-ever spiral to walk. We had talked much over the weekend of the longest night and shortest day of the year. We evoked the ancient celebrations of the return of the light and what it meant to peoples convinced that the sun was leaving forever to finally "get" that it would return each year. I set it up in the living room in the dark, with candles all around and the lit Christmas tree behind it all. The children were mesmerized as they walked the spiral, in silence, one after the other. When it appeared more difficult to remain quiet, Pierre picked up his guitar and strummed a soft song, bringing us back to a reverent feeling and adding much to the ambiance of the occasion.

Christmas Eve was spent with my family and fond thoughts of our family in France. The weather was fair to middlin', but everyone made it and my parents' house was filled with beautiful decorations, a warm fire, good food and lots of love.

Christmas Day we stayed home in our pajamas, as per the children's request. We were delighted to oblige. The kids got us up at seven o'clock precisely with a leap on the bed and a showering of homemade and other gifts, they had waited so long to give them, they were bursting! Pierre went down to light the fire and candles, a tradition in his family, then we followed, rather at a gallop. After opening gifts and some breakfast, we did not get dressed, but each enjoyed their new toys and gifts. Pierre and I cooked and baked and helped kids figure out how to use their new toys. (Note to us: no electronics next year!) We had a feast fit for...children, lol! They wanted hamburgers and fries, we made hamburgers and fries, along with smoked salmon, some brie, a good baguette and my now-traditional Yule log. We spent time around the fire, playing guitar and knitting, time playing a new video game, and had a little family Christmas music concert.

Since then, we have been shoveling and sledding and watching movies together when it gets too cold outside. Family and friends have stopped by and emails and phone calls made to France. You are all in our hearts and thoughts, enjoy the remaining days of the season, nine more to go!

1 comment:

  1. I love that story about Puck and the gingerbread cookies.

    I'm so glad your celebration was wonderful. :)


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