I Know it's Christmas When I'm Forced to Get Off of My Butt

The week before Christmas is busy for everyone. For me, it means leaving the house nearly every day, which I normally don't enjoy. I'm a homebody and Nettl and I have worked hard to create a home that we really enjoy spending time in. The problem is, we can sometimes grow a bit too self-contained, until we're forced out. I mean, she's out every day at work, driving kids around, etc., but me? I have a lead weight attached to my backside and leave only when it's absolutely necessary.

Last Sunday, we went to two concerts; the first was the Stillwater Chamber Singers, of which Nettl is a member. From there we went directly to #2 daughter's school's concert. Monday night was the Chamber Singers' annual holiday party. Did I go anywhere on Tuesday? I was running around all evening yesterday and today, Joel and I are going shopping. Tomorrow, Nettl meets her ex half-way between here and Wichita to bring Nathan home for the holidays. And so it goes. Concerts, rehearsals, shopping and parties. Everybody does it.

I'm really looking forward to the Christmas Eve midnight Mass (10:30, actually) at St. Andrew's, at which Nettl will be singing Bach and Mozart. During the 1980s, when I worked with the Ventura County Symphony, I used to enjoy going to midnight services and I haven't been to one in years. When I learned that this one was going to be a musical Mass, I decided to go, not knowing that Nettl was going to be hired for it.

Last night, after picking her up from rehearsal, she and I sat in the living room with the candles lit and Handel's "Messiah" playing, enjoying a glass of wine and talking. Simple pleasures smooth my ruffled feathers; I don't require much. Today, I have a new lease on life and am looking forward to the upcoming week.

We're planning on our annual New Year's Eve party, too -- last year we had a Rat Pack affair that was absolutely the best party I've ever hosted. For all of you who were here last year and plan to attend this year, we'll be using the same decorations, but the dress will be casual. Actually, dress however you want; it doesn't matter. I wasn't going to host a party this year due to my waning energy level, but everyone was so disappointed that I reneged. As usual, it will be pot luck cocktail fare, BYOB. If you're in the area and want to attend, email me at skwallerATgmailDOTcom for the details.

That's all!

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