Christmas Eve 2020

Christmas Eve 2020

We had a lovely lead up to Christmas in 2020.

We received a box of cookies in the mail from our minister.

She’s in Kentucky. All the cookies were delicious, but the Bourbon balls were fantastic!

I surprised the crew by ordering some elaborately decorated sugar cookies from a local woman who lost her job due to COVID and turned to creating cookies to supplement her income.

A few days before Christmas I taped up the cards for our various delivery folks who aren’t always easy to catch. I loved that they put their deliveries on the same side that their cards had been on. (Fedex card was on the left. Amazon Prime on the right.)

We ordered carry-out from the Chinese restaurant where the church would normally gather after the Christmas Eve service to try to help make up for some of the lost revenue.

And Buds made time to put on those magical screen protectors that were going to save us all from cracked screens.

Christmas Eve would generally hold the service at church, which would have included Buds and me playing the bells with Thena, possibly one or two of us taking part in the service with a reading, and lots of carols and hymns.

The girls and I had taken to wearing surprising dresses for the enjoyment of our fellow congregants.

And the service always ended with the candle lighting while “Silent Night” played.

Then we’d head out to dinner to the Chinese Restaurant as a large group, or some years we would share a meal with Buddie’s brother’s family, or we’d head home to enjoy the evening together.

This year brought joys of a different sort.

Counting all the folks who put together music and songs and readings, plus the time Buds and I spent organizing and planning and editing, plus our minister creating the vision and the flow, over 100 hours had gone into the Christmas Eve Service. This meant that the anticipation of Christmas Eve was spread out over a longer period of time than usually.

Our family even had to do our candle lighting videos twice because it took a bit to figure out how to get the right look.

Second time’s a charm.

There was a moment of panic about 3 hours before the service because someone decided it was a good time to update the router. The router wasn’t happy about being updated, so Buds and I almost had a quick trip out to buy a new router, but the crisis was averted.

I was responsible for “hosting” the service, so we all gathered around Buddie’s tech station area and we enjoyed the service together. It was a joy to belt out the beloved Christmas Carols, just the five of us, knowing the rest of our congregation was out there singing along, too.

After the service was over, Fi and Imani and our family hung on until everyone else had signed off so we could wish each other one final “Merry Christmas.”

Yessa whipped up some Christmas Eve cinnamon rolls.

Buds set up for a family photo.

We honored the memory of my dad with one of his favorite traditions of opening one gift on Christmas Eve.

The girls did an exceptional job on gifts for me this year. With a little financial support from Buds, Monkey surprised me with a perfectly-chosen water color of my beloved dogs.

Monkey and Buster opened their traditional t-shirt gifts:

Yessa unwrapped an LP for her record player.

We had some time hanging out together.

Then watched some favorite movie classics.

Mr. Magoo’s “A Christmas Carol”

“A Peanuts Christmas”

It was such a perfectly relaxed, lovely, loving Christmas Eve.