|dark early this morning|
2. Christmas music. Not so much the Sirius/XM stations that start just after Halloween, but the playlists from CDs I've collected over the years (a few of which were inspired additions from my parents' Christmas LPs... topic for another day!)
3. Baking. Honestly, lately, I've really preferred other people baking and me enjoying the fruits of their labors, but this year I think I'm going to try cookies with Charlie.
4. The Advent program at church. It's always meaningful, but this year, they're having actors from our theatrical ministry portray biblical characters ... we had Isaiah for the Hope candle the first Sunday and this past week it was Elizabeth for the Peace candle. Inspiring, heartwarming, and certainly thought-provoking.
5. Christmas on TV (Love Actually, Elf, Miracle on 34th Street, Family Stone, Charlie Brown and the Grinch) and the Big Screen (we have tickets again this year for White Christmas).
6. Christmas books and stories, and not just for Charlie. He does have quite a collection, including The Snowman, The Night Before Christmas, Olive the Other Reindeer, The Grinch and Polar Express (we read all of those except Polar Express tonight before bedtime). This is likely a topic for another day as well, and I hope y'all have some new titles to share.
7. Celebrating the traditions and memories around our decorations.
8. Our family celebrations and traditions. We have an annual gathering with my brother and sister and their families and a more recent tradition of a girls only lunch after Christmas. My own family is making new traditions (just like Thanksgiving) to celebrate a toddler and a daughter/sister/aunt who arrives on Christmas Eve.
9. All the hustle and bustle...real smiles on faces, the smell of pine, jingle bells. Especially if there's a chill in the air and no shopping involved!
10. Bailey's in my coffee. this is a very special treat that I only enjoy for a day or two the week between Christmas and New Years. (note to self - buy Bailey's).
and now I'm sure y'all are wondering how Charlie did with the tree today. In short - fine. I was actually a little disappointed that it took much encouragement to get the slightest interaction with even a few of the ornaments.
Evidently, he's showing all that interest in the ornaments on his tree at home. I saw that tree for the first time this evening. There are no longer any ornaments at Charlie's level; Katie said he's taken them all off...and she's hung them up again toward the top of the tree. He does have two special ornaments that are "his"...and tonight they are resting on the table, awaiting tomorrow, when he'll hang them up, and take them off...again.
If you're not already playing along with Ten on Tuesday fun, click here to join. and Thank You, Carole, for helping us share our best parts of the holiday season.