Working backwards from the present....
* Sitting in my living room with Petra and Larry as they share music... Larry's home!
* The tree is modest (read: not tall) and lovely. Only our favorite ornaments.
* A pot of Grandmom's (i.e., my mom's) spaghetti sauce with meatballs is simmering merrily on the stove. I will spare you Larry's expressions of ecstasy when he walked in the house from late Christmas shopping.
* Four dense, lovely dark-batter fruitcakes sit "aging" on the table, each of them filled with dried apricots, pineapple, cranberries, raisins and dates and soaked with Hennessy cognac. These are for Grandpop (and Beloved, and a colleague at church).
* Speaking of church, my meditation/ sermon's done, printed, waiting for me in my office. The deacons called with a question about Communion set-up, so that's done. Christmas presents for staff have been dispersed.
* My staff gave me a beautiful stole for Christmas!
* All the presents for Beloved, Larry and Petra are wrapped. A significant item for Larry arrived today (after the people at the Brown place told me it was lost, so. Yay!).
* I listened to the Ceremony of Lessons and Carols this morning as I drove to church. "Once in Royal David's City" never fails to bring tears to my eyes, especially at the lyrics, "And our eyes at last shall see him...." Larry sang the soprano solo for that about 15 years ago.
* Beloved is still staying with us (it's been over a week now) while her home is disrupted by structural repairs. It's lovely to have her.
And tonight.... we celebrate the birth of God's love among us.
A blessed Christmas to you my friends!