Today is the Fourth Day of Christmas, and I am reflecting on all the lovely celebrations our family has had this past week. We started with my daughter Deb’s birthday on December 22cd, which we celebrated by attending the Nutcracker, the Pacific Northwest Ballet performance. This was a special gift since my 7-year-old grandson Weston was seeing it live (with full orchestra) for the first time, and was enthralled. His delight was a gift to all of us, as he watched the entire performance, eyes wide, barely moving in his seat.
The next day we had our family celebration at my daughter Laura’s home, with lots of laughter and food, and of course, the opening of presents. Grandson Josh opened a huge container of Lincoln logs and from that point on, he and his Daddy, and several of the other cousins were totally absorbed as they built an entire village (or so it seemed as tracks and buildings spread across the living room.)
On the following morning (Christmas eve) 25 members of extended family met for breakfast at a local restaurant, and who should make his appearance but Santa Claus, astounding all of us (who really didn’t expect him so early.) The gift of his appearance brought smiles to all of our faces.
Christmas eve night, we followed our family tradition of opening one gift each. Seven year-old Weston could not wait to have his Mommy open the gift he had made for her, a lovely India ink etching of a cornstalk.
An hour later, after hanging stockings, I was off to church, with the joy and privilege of singing in the choir for our Christmas eve Mass. Such gift, as we sang those familiar hymns, the church lit with candles, Christmas trees filling the nave with their spicy fir smell, glowing with hundreds of white lights. My heart was truly full, God’s Gift of Love so present all around and in us.
And all of this, before Christmas morning,which was wonderful in itself.
There are Gifts of all kinds. This Christmas week, I am thankful for all of them, but most especially thankful for the Giver.