Tuesday, December 21, 2010

The Last Christmas Party (Well, for Three Days Anyhow)

Last night was our last Christmas party before Christmas Day One. Well, the last one that we host here at the house anyhow. We do have a few "Santa runs" planned -- that's where we take the party on the road to others who can't get out so easily. But otherwise, it's a fairly easy on-ramp to Christmas from here in.

Just in time. For after Claire's Christmas tea, 3 luncheons, 6 dinner parties, and 6 presentations of "When Swing Was King" this month, we're kinda' tired!

We start up again on Christmas Eve with the traditional breakfast we host in Lincoln for all the Aylward side of the family who happen to be in town (last year it was 23) and then on Christmas Day One it will be dinner here again for a gang of 15 or more: Kurt, the Morans and the Kabores with their extended family and friends. It's a marvelous tradition -- the customary American menu spiced up with African fare, stimulating conversation among Christians from different continents, and after-dinner prayers, musical entertainment and a performance by the Toy Theater Players. We're really looking forward to it.

And then we start up with the next round. Christmas is celebrated for 12 days here. So that means more dinner parties, more lunches, more "Santa runs" and one last gala event, the ceremonious Epiphany Party. But we'll get to those next week. For now we rest a bit, do a little Christmas shopping, and listen to a lot of music together by the fire.

But before that -- a quick review of last night.

Last night's party was a particularly sweet one. Coming over were Dick & Jan Loneman, Allen & Cindy Nelson and John & Barb Malek. The menu featured ham (with a sweet/sour apricot sauce), "baconed" green beans, roasted Parmesan potatoes, roles, salad and a dessert of cookies, lemon curd cups, and ice cream (peppermint and egg nog).

The fellowship was even more wonderful. We talked Christianity and pro-life action (natural subjects for this group), music, grandkids, food, movies, common friends, Christmas traditions and memories, and more.

And, relevant to that last category, the Nelsons gave me the most splendid Christmas present I've received in many, many years -- a small bottle of Lucarelli after shave! I'd thought the brand had gone out of business years ago and so it was a great and marvelous surprise. Wanna' know why? Just read this.

Thanks Allen & Cindy. You made my Christmas with that gift. It's one my whole family will get a kick out of.