Twas merry, merry

From top left (clockwise):
~ the girls on the new computer
~my sister Nancy came up from Brooklyn & brightened our holiday
~my new red cabinet
~the family room, post present opening
~a quiet corner
~Nancy doing the NY Times crossword
~royal G on Christmas Eve
~enjoying the new foosball table (even though it took hours to assemble)
~queenly or foolish? you be the judge (with pop-up Sam)
~Lauren plowing through new books
~L in her paper crown
~Maddy on Christmas Eve
(in the middle) Sam wearing his golden crown from the Christmas crackers

One of the best moments of the whole holiday was during our traditional Christmas Eve walk. After dinner we drove to the center of town to walk around past the grand old houses (also known as the peeping through the windows walk). It was still all snowy so we walked down the deserted street. As we neared the town center we heard brass instruments tuning and froze in our tracks.

Somewhere a brass quartet started playing Christmas carols--It Came Upon a Midnight Clear, Oh Come All Ye Faithful--and, as we stood there looking, we discovered the source of the music. Up in the bell tower of the church (in the open part above the clock) the musicians were sending their noels into the night. We were the only ones within sight and it felt like it was just for us. Magical.