Christmas update

Phew – it’s been a whirlwind few days. On Friday, my husband and I went to a Sixers game, which was something I’d been wanting to do for a while. They won! Which was good, because they were down by 15 points when we got there…

Saturday featured a visit from SHU and her kids, and then my whole family came over for our Christmas gathering. There was tenderloin, presents, and carol singing.

Sunday featured not one, not two, but three services for me (I didn’t make anyone else go in the morning). My three younger children performed in the Christmas pageant in the afternoon, and then my 16-year-old and I sang in the Lessons and Carols service at 8:30. Our choir performed two world premieres, commissioned for the church’s 150th anniversary, so that was cool. We made it home about 10:15.

Christmas was…Christmas. It’s always so much prep, and then it’s over in a few hours! But the kids seemed reasonably happy with their hauls. A few big wins include a set of superhero capes and masks in Henry’s stocking, plus an excavator you can sit on and dig. We played outside a fair amount since the weather was quite mild.

Tuesday, my husband took the little boys skiing, and I did a lot of cleaning up. Then I took the two older boys to the Philadelphia Ballet’s performance of the Nutcracker in the evening. I always enjoy this — and fortunately, I have some kids willing to go with me!

Now today we have my husband’s family coming so it’s been a lot of setting up air mattresses and making sure we have enough pillows and towels. I’ll report back on the holiday fun list in a few days, but in the meantime, here’s another sonnet from my annual writing project.

Bleak midwinter

Perhaps behind the fog the sun is up,
but all I see are shadows of the trees.
The scent of coffee’s heady in this cup —
a quiet morning moment that I seize

to sit in silence, gazing at my tree,
all trimmed with baubles, softly glowing lights,
a beacon in the window, greeting me,
acknowledging the lateness of these nights

when I was wrapping presents, tying bows.
All magic is just labor, hidden well.
Now see in bleak midwinter, still a rose
is blooming by the driveway, it can dwell

in cold that greets me — throw open the door.
A flock of birds first squawks, then starts to soar.

16 thoughts on “Christmas update

  1. Again, I really like this sonnet. Lines 5-10 spoke to me. What a whirlwind this end of December is. The kids love it and that does make the magic worth it.

    These post 25th evenings have me on edge – still question- where is elf? Where shall it be tomorrow? (oh back at North Pole for 33x more days). Or should they visit briefly in July?

    1. @Erin – thanks – and thank goodness the elf is back in the north pole – one less thing to worry about each day!

  2. This sonnet is lovely! Agree that “All magic is just labor, hidden well” is a stunning line and sentiment. Both practical and full of possibility.

  3. Your best sonnet yet. Love it – all the lines people highlight above I second. Squak to soar, magic in labour.

    And this is so true: “Christmas was…Christmas. It’s always so much prep, and then it’s over in a few hours! ” I’m slowly figuring out that the magic of Christmas for adults is the prep. By Christmas Day I’m exhausted and it’s a bit of a letdown, but Christmas isn’t really the main event. It’s the culmination of all those little things (and big things) we get to do to make the season special.

    Merry Christmas and Happy New Year, Laura!

    1. @Elisabeth – Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you as well! And thank you for your kind words. Much appreciated!

  4. Your Christmas sounds lovely and busy! Also, I loved the sonnet and I am not a poetry person. Very nice. I have had moments of bad attitude during the holidays and am trying to focus on the fact that it is a privilege to still have children at home that I can create “magic” for.

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