The pitter-patter of tiny feet woke me early on Christmas morning, but it wasn't the sound of excited little children as on Christmas mornings long ago. It was Belle, letting me know she was ready to go outside.
I granted her request, then crawled back into bed. That's one good thing about Christmas mornings when the kids are grown - you get to sleep in if you want to.
Another is that they are old enough to fix you bacon and eggs for breakfast, like Daniel did for us.
But our celebration began on Christmas Eve with the Children's Mass. There's nothing like seeing little ones all dressed up in their fancy holiday outfits and a group of them acting out the Christmas pageant to fill you with Christmas spirit. So cute!
I spent the rest of that evening baking cookies while watching "It's a Wonderful Life". I think it's my favorite Christmas movie of all, because of its message of hope and faith and friendship, and the beauty of the simple things in life, period.
Christmas day itself was slow and relaxing. Sleeping late ... a walk with Belle ... that huge breakfast, courtesy of Daniel ... phone calls and texts from loved ones and friends ... last minute gift wrapping ... catching bits and pieces of a Shirley Temple movie marathon..
Late in the afternoon my oldest and his wife met us at Mama's nursing home, where we all squeezed into her little room to share cookies, visit, and open a few gifts.
Back home a couple of hours later, we shared a not-so-traditional fajita dinner, opened more gifts, and then ended the day stretched out around the television watching "A Christmas Story" - the "you'll shoot your eye out" one.
I wish so much that Mama could have joined us for dinner at our house. However, mid-week a chest X-ray confirmed she had pneumonia. They caught it early and started antibiotics, but she's still weak and has a bad cough. Please continue to pray for her - and thank you in advance.
Today I followed through on a promise by watching "Elf" with her. She and her roommate loved it.
I hope no matter what else is going on in your life, you've experienced some joy and laughter during the holidays, too.
May you have the gladness of Christmas which is hope;
The spirit of Christmas which is peace;
The heart of Christmas which is love.
~Ada V. Hendricks