In an attempt to dump my brain, I am dumping my camera instead. Bear with me. It's about all I can manage in the middle of the holiday season.
Here are our gifts to deliver around the neighborhood. Gorgeous, no? All ready to deliver. Then just as we were eating that chicken pot pie in the bottom of the frame, two separate families came around and delivered the exact same gift. Really. So we had to start over. For the record I wanted to make Lelly's "House Sparkle" in the first place. David scrunched up his nose at the idea. When our friends delivered the second bottle I told David that this never would have happened with "House Sparkle." He said there was a reason for that. I ignored that. We ended up making a Christmas CD which was a far superior idea anyway and only took us another three or four days (heaven help me) to make the mix, copy the CD's, figure out how to print CD covers and then finally deliver them.
Olivia had her Christmas viola recital last weekend. She was beaming at her chance to wow the world with "the Can Can" and "Ode to Joy." We were all sufficiently wowed.
David and I finished up most of our Christmas shopping last weekend. I snapped this picture of David in a store that we have never shopped in and are unlikely to ever visit again. I've said it before, there are a million little universes out there. How we ended up in this one is a mystery of the season.
Amy and Kelly and I went to dinner on Wednesday night. And then Kel and I did some (mostly window) shopping. Here she is expressing her outrage at the sight of this anatomically correct cologne bottle. Whatever happened to public decency standards?
My nephew, Luke, had his first birthday party on Saturday, and we played at the park with him and all his other fans. My kids were good enough to open all his presents for him, and, bless his heart, he didn't seem to mind a bit. (I think Ethan has secret designs on his Christmas presents as well.) We had a great time and I can't remember the last time I laughed that hard.
This one is by far my favorite. I snapped it as the girls and I were leaving the Nutcracker on Friday night. After a night of gorgeous dance and costumes and music, they are whispering about the magnificence of the Sugar Plum Fairy and picking the parts they want to play next year. They oohed and ahhed through the whole thing, gasping at just the right moments. They even raved about our "great seats" up in the balcony. And here they are reviewing all the best moments: "Olivia, weren't those gingersnaps soooo cute?" "Oh, Savannah I think next year you could definitely do the Russian dance." We hummed and pirouetted all the way to the car.
The stories that my Canon Elph could not tell this week (either because they were too sacred or too sad) include a multitude of car problems (for both cars), the worst of which is that David's car needs a whole new engine, and will have to be replaced. So I am shuttling him to and from work and making due until we can do that. And meanwhile, I am secretly enjoying this extra time with David every day.
After grudgingly (yes, even petulantly) making my way through the first couple weeks of the holiday season, I have finally caught the spirit of it. On Saturday night we watched "It's a Wonderful Life" and I started bawling at the drugstore scene with Mr. Gower and never really stopped. And then last night we had dinner with some friends and went to a Christmas concert at our church. (Caleb and Olivia both sang in it too, Olivia with significant feeling all over her face.) The music was gorgeous, and suddenly I caught the Christmas spirit, and I belted out "Hark the Herald Angels Sing" at the end as loud as I could. Today is cold (a first this year) and overcast (rare), and it finally feels like Christmas. David said we could light a fire tonight after Caleb's violin concert. I think if we open the doors we really can. There will be hot chocolate. And marshmellows. And more Hark-the-Herald-Angels-belting with "significant feeling." And Dicken's "Stave One" in which we shall meet Marley's ghost. It's finally Christmas at our house.