It's Monday and there's much more white stuff than the last time I wrote. It's really really cold. But for some reason, it's okay. It's getting me in the mood to get necessary things done - finally. I definitely won't be joining any home parades this year. I only did one tree this year, and I haven't put out a lot of my things because they are just too tempting for little tiny fingers. The first time the littles got up from their naps and saw all the things hanging on the tree, they did a beeline to the lower branches and began their work. I am attempting to teach "no" instead of moving the ornaments up higher.
I have three nativity sets that are designed for child's play. With four players, it gets really interesting - pieces everywhere! But they are sure having fun.
I have had an amazingly productive day - finished decorating, cleaned up the mess the kiddoes left yesterday, did laundry, went to the gym, did a bit of shopping (not for gifts), ordered some gifts on line, got sidetracked in the basement and actually made some progress on getting rid of the chaos down there (believe it or not), AND fixed a good dinner. Dear DC was so pleasantly surprised when he walked in the door - I haven't been a very good homemaker lately.
I have much more shopping to do yet, and don't know what or where. But I know I'll figure it out. In the meantime, I am doing what I really want to do to celebrate this blessed season. It may sound crazy when I give you a rundown on what I've been doing and will be doing, but every one of these things is a choice I have made to make my Christmas what I want it to be - a celebration of what it really means to me.
- Every Tuesday for the last two months (plus some extra rehearsals), I have been singing with a group of 95 people for 2.5 -3 hours. The director of the Loveland Choral Society has been doing this for 19 years - I don't know about other years, but this year he chose 19 wonderful pieces of music. At least 3/4 of the music is sacred. All of it is challenging and fun to sing. We have two rehearsals this week. There are 4 performances next week-end, but I will be singing in 3 of them - we have to take our turns sitting out because there are too many of us to be on the platform - fire code. So I'll be singing on Friday evening, Saturday afternoon, and Sunday afternoon, sitting out Saturday evening, which works well since I have the girls on Saturday nights.
- Saturday between the two concerts we are having a nice dinner for the choir and orchestra. It's a time to relax between concerts without having to go home or worry about dinner. Even though I won't be singing in the evening concert, I'm definitely going to enjoy this event.
- Wednesday, December 1 - Care Bear's school program was very early this year. There are many elementary schools that want to use the high school auditorium, so somebody has to be first and early. It was fun watching the first and second graders, but DC and I took the twins home to put them to bed, so we didn't see the rest. Care Bear is the one in the red sleeveless dress with the plaid sash.
- Saturday, December 5 - annual Ladies' Tea at church - a beautiful occasion every year. I didn't get any pictures this year, unfortunately. Each of the tables is decorated by a different woman, and they do a fabulous job. Delicious food, lovely harp music as we ate, wonderful speaker, good fellowship.
- Sunday, December 6 - I took the big girls downtown to the community sing-along at the Rialto, the same place we'll be performing this week-end. This was a great time of just singing Christmas songs for about an hour. We had hot chocolate, cookies, and candy canes. It was really fun and festive.
- I mentioned to Care Bear that something was going on at the library. Of course, we had to head over there. Among the other things going on, they had a contest for the kids to find large Christmas jingle bells, hidden all over the library. We had so much finding them, and found 21 of them. I don't know how many there were, but I think they did a great job. We'll see if they win anything. We got into parts of the library we've never been before.
- Friday noon, December 11 - I plan to go hear my two good friends from church who sing in the women's chorale in the town north of here. They do their big concert at the exact same time as my Sunday concert, so I'll attend this one, held in an art gallery.
- Sunday evening, December 13 - "Coming Home for Christmas" at our church - many families will be doing skits, songs, and whatever they want to do. The children are preparing something, which I'm looking forward to seeing. Snacks afterward, so I'll need to come up with something yummy.
- Tuesday noon, December 15 - the chorale will be singing for the Rotary Club, and eating lunch with them as well.
- Thursday, December 17 - Sema's concert at her church.
- Saturday, December 19 - Care Bear and Feisty are working on a program with another church as well - we have to go see it, of course.
- Sunday morning, December 20 - sanctuary choir will celebrate with a few wonderful songs - no cantata this year. But still enjoyable.
- I'm hoping to get some cookies made and sent to Kev and the guys at Teen Challenge. I'm going to make his favorite peanut butter with the Hershey's Kiss in the middle. But I'll cheat with Sam's mix. I need to have the girls over to make sugar cookies, too. But again, Sam's comes to the rescue with the basic dough mix.
I know it sounds crazy, but everything above gives me pleasure! It doesn't make me feel stress. Everything except shopping. I really don't like shopping. I just wish I had some good ideas!
Have a great week!