After days of waiting, and cleaning and cooking and planning, wrapping and waiting some more, we were delighted to see our Georgia Clan arrive very late last night.
We hugged and kissed babies and talked and hugged babies some more. Chris baked cookies at One A.m. and we ate them, warm and melty with chocolate, as we snugged shoulder and lap around the little round breakfast table. The little ones gazed with wide eyes at the unaccustomed deep-night party, then we tucked them into warm beds and fell into our own at four a.m..
That table has been a day-long art gallery, with immense sheets of paper and pages from a Tinkerbell coloring book, as I learned the names of Iridessa and Silvermist, coloring their dainty raiment in all the shades in the marker-box. Peanut butter sandwiches and sandwiches of still-warm ham off the grill were lunch, as we cleared the decks for plates and glasses, then went back to all our artistic afternoon.
There's the customary pot of bean soup on the stove, both washer and dishwasher are running, and we're settling in for a very simple Christmas Eve. We'll try to stretch this out over the several nights the children are here, and the mere household of it, the being together---that instinctive huddle of togetherness on a cold night---that's the original Gathering, and no amount of tinsel and paper could wrap that feeling in enough importance.
I wish you all a peaceful and wonderful Holiday Season.