I'm happy to report both our girls are home safe and sound, thanks to the largely unthanked airport and airline personnel who work so hard during this time of year. Their flights came in at very different times on December 23, necessitating two separate trips to the airport (we got home with Younger Daughter at 1 am on December 24). But no matter, they're both home! (Though both were hoping for a white Christmas and were a bit disappointed to have "meh" amounts of snow on the ground.)
Christmas Eve is our big day of celebrating, starting with our whimsical and absurd junk food feast (in which we indulge in all the forbidden foods we seldom have, and which started as an attempt by my dear husband to keep me from slaving in the kitchen) and ending with the departure of our dear friends D and S, who have joined us for every Christmas Eve since we moved to Idaho. These fine people have faced some hairy health issues in the past year, so we're doubly glad to have them with us.
Here's Don's father's Bible, opened and ready for him to read Luke 2.
Our nativity scene (a beloved Christmas gift from my parents years ago) backlit by an oil lamp.
A very blurry picture of D and S (I was holding the camera in my lap and trying not to be obnoxious about photographing people).
Here the girls share an electronic moment.
Don always reads Luke 2 out loud, reminding us of our blessings.
Mr. Darcy was graced with a Christmas ribbon collar.
We woke up to a white Christmas after all, with snow coming down fairly heavily.
A reader sent this hilarious video, meant to bring a smile to everyone's faces (I like the mistletoe reaction):
Above all, never forget:
And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed. (And this taxing was first made when Cyrenius was governor of Syria.) And all went to be taxed, every one into his own city.
And Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judaea, unto the city of David, which is called Bethlehem; (because he was of the house and lineage of David) to be taxed with Mary his espoused wife, being great with child.
And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished that she should be delivered. And she brought forth her firstborn son, and wrapped him in swaddling clothes, and laid him in a manger; because there was no room for them in the inn.
And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.
A blessed Christmas to everyone.