Saturday, December 18, 2010

Ho ho homemade Christmas

Welcome to another in the continuing if sporadic series I like to call "Simplify? Did I say simplify?"

While I pour you a cup of virtual tea I'd really love if you noticed in the first photo our incredibly authentic, clearly historically significant, thoroughly researched nativity scene, in which elephants march with drums right behind the wise men and camel as all are apparently on their way past the main event (you know, the babe in the manger?) in search of a somewhat Victorian, differently scaled schoolhouse from the Village Otherwise Located Across the Room On the Bookcases.

Suite's the name, anachronism's the game. Imagination, improvisation, justification. Anyone?

In this most beautiful of all seasons, the time of celebration of God's gift to the world, we at the Suite place are careful to edit the busy-ness even more than usual.

We strive for a heavy emphasis on Advent, on the waiting of the world for God's son, on love, on blessing others. We craft. We clip evergreen boughs. We light candles. And we rarely mention that secondary icon of Christmas. Oh, sure, the kids think it's a fun story, the Mr. Claus legend. But this year we didn't even write him letters.

So JUST WHEN WE LEAST EXPECTED HIM, Santa showed up at the girls' Christmas concert.

Laura was out of Aunt Maureen's lap before the Good Saint Nick could be seated. I just noticed that her shoes were on the wrong feet. Classic.

And then? He gave away TREATS. Can you imagine?

Little Sal certainly couldn't. He was unsure of the situation. Stranger danger? Meh. (Behind that big white beard are the sparkling blue eyes of Randy, an elder at our church and a retired sheriff to boot.)

Random. Not Santa- nor Christmas-related. But Grace and her friend Julianne are treasures beyond compare. That's what I'm talking about.

And by the way, the girls played beautifully. Have I mentioned before how I live for this stuff? How blessed I am to live in a tiny rural village where music and friendship are part of our everyday lives? The fact that we didn't have to choose between homeschooling and participation in fantastic community events is one of the highlights of living here.

Here's another picture, for Grandma who couldn't make it, of the musicians looking cute despite the terrible gymnasium lighting.

Stay tuned for more from this supposedly simple homesteading life.

And may your Christmas season be more blessed with love, with friendship, with grace, than you or I can imagine. Because I have a pretty big imagination. It's even big enough to enjoy a visit from St. Nick.

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