Thursday, December 27, 2012

Funny Things

One of the (few) gifts of service we managed this month was to join others from our church in caroling at two assisted living communities where members of our congregation live.  What our group (numbering just over 30 in all) lacked in on-tune singing, we made up for in holiday cheer and goodwill.  The age range of carolers included 2 year olds to septuagenarians.  We sang a multitude of songs, ranging from "Silent Night" to "Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer."  At times, it was heart-wrenching, to see how frail and sickly and hard life is for so many residents in these communities.  Other times, it was poignant and tender, seeing how much joy our simple gift of song seemed to bring to them.  And yet the memory of this day that I'll never forget is when our Pastor announced it was time to go.  We were in the Alzheimer's wing of one of the residence halls, and naturally, the collective kids in the group heard the call to leave, turned toward the nearest doors leading to the outside courtyard, shoved open the doors -- and set off all sorts of alarms in the building.  The nurses quickly realized what had happened, and encouraged us to exit through the same doors we'd come in - but those required a special code, which none of us knew, and the nurses were busy trying to silence the alarms.  There we all stood, making a valiant effort in covering our mistake by singing another rousing chorus of "We Wish You a Merry Christmas" atop the blaring alarms and our uncontrollable giggles.
The weather has been chilly but sunny, so I sent the boys outside to play.  Aidan returned some time later, presenting himself to me:

 "Do you like my Nutcracker costume?"

He proceeded to open and close his mouth just like a true Nutcracker, and march around the yard in all his glory and elegance.

On Christmas Eve, we received quite a surprise:  a light dusting of snow! There was none in the forecast, and although it was barely enough to get excited about, it was still enough.  I spent much of Christmas Eve morning scurrying around, taking care of last-minute gifts, and so I was rather confused (and disoriented) when Pax came to me, looking like this, and announced, "Mama!  It's snowing!  Come see!!"
(I was really confused by this, because he was warm and dry, yet his hair was oddly convincing that he had, indeed, been in the snow.....)

"What do you mean it is snowing, Pax?"
"In the basement!" he replied.  "Come see!"
"Is Daddy with you?"  I asked, hoping beyond all hope that he had somehow orchestrated this realistic-yet-clearly-styrofoam "snow" covering our youngest.
"Yes!"  he replied.  He took me by the hand and led me to the basement where I discovered this......

and this......

and this.  Because the kids found a huge shipping box full of packing peanuts.

On Christmas Eve

And what did I do?  This not-stressed mama laughed.  And laughed.  And handed Jeff the Shop-Vac, which he proceeded to use on each of the kids, and their hair. 

*Bonus Styling Tip:  Shop-Vacs can do wonders for adding volume to flat, straight hair.... 

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