|December 12-13, 2011|
I've been writing a longer post about my trip to Belgian and Dutch war sites. I am about halfway through now. Maybe life will smile on me tomorrow, and I will finish :) Or instead I might wrap Christmas presents. The sentimentality of the season embodied in all the time devoted to thinking and caring for others really appeals to me. I love it every year, even when the list of loved ones overwhelms my budget. The communal meal-making has a place among my Christmas faves, too, but the annual chief pleasure has to be the houseclothes-clad gathering in the den of a morning, over mimosas, crackers and cheese. The stores are closed, the world is covered in white and quiet. There's just my dear family.
This year I have a pre-Christmas favourite: music! To prepare my two-year-old daughter for Christmas, I started singing carols to her at night sometime in October. Everything from Silent Night to Jingle Bells. Her favourite is "Little Toy Trains." The link is to the version by Nana Mouskouri that my parents played when I was a child. I loved to sing along with her.
We also loved Mahalia Jackson, and I think we had a Leona Boyd Christmas album, too. Of course Ella Fitzgerald's Swinging Christmas and Bing Crosby are terrific (and should I mention my husband's pick, Bony M's Christmas?) but my favourite is the Nat King Cole Trios' Christmas Song. It's probably wrong that someone with a voice like that also had so much talent on piano, too, but I lap it up like a cat.
It's taking me longer and longer to draw my bus pictures because they're more elaborate now. But I like the results, even if they never look like I spent two hours on them!