And today, Christmas Eve, is normally when we would be getting things ready to go over to my mother-in-law's house, for what has been a 26 year tradition of dinner, church, photos, carols, and gifts. But this year we were at home, and Mother is in Pennsylvania, her first Christmas away from home in probably three decades or more. I hope it is going well for her, and that her youngest granddaughter is loving having her Ama there for Christmas.
We put the ornaments on the tree last night, so today they were lovely in the sunshine. I can't decide whether I enjoy the tree more in the day, when I can really see the hundreds of unique ornaments (and ponder the stories and memories behind many of them) or at night, when the lights make it magical and I see only hints of the ornaments.
We went to church this evening (yes - even I went) and I enjoyed the warmth of so many familiar faces and the power of the singing. The youth choir sang, and our little corner of the nave had five current adult choir members, several others who have been in choir (including myself) and the leader of the Compline Choir. So we had major volume, part singing and descants going in the right hand half of our three pews. It was almost as good as singing in the choir. The sermon was good, and made the point well ("If Christmas gifts are often telling you something about the giver's view of you, or of who they wish you were, then what does it mean that God gave His son to us?"), and it was lovely to be in the middle of the prayers again - especially such thorough ones as we prayed tonight.
And, of course, Eucharist is indescribable.
Merry Christmas, everyone - God bless all of you.