Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Six days before Christmas....

In the quiet time before dawn, I'm catching up on the internet, reading friend statuses on Facebook, and updating on news stories local, state, and national. The wind is blustery outside but it's a mild 41 degrees at 6:00 a.m. That's unusual in December but weather forecasts are warning that cold weather is on its way.

After an extremely busy fall with political campaigns and then time on the road visiting with family out of the area, we finally started our Christmas decorating two weeks later than normal. Now, six days from Christmas Day, there are only loose ends to tie up before family begins arriving over the weekend for our Shenandoah Valley Family Christmas.

The days leading to New Year's will be full of family and friends, cooking and baking, gift-giving, and viewing the holiday lights as we gather with those who mean the most to us.

This weekend many of the local homeschool grads -- scattered to the four corners of the earth -- will get together as well as the parents to catch up, reminisce, and introduce new spouses and babies to home town friends. All the years spent by homeschool parents building firm foundations have paid off and now the torch is being passed to the next generation. It will be wonderful to see young adults I've known since they were little children.

This year we have added a son to our fold. When SWAC Daughter married in September, we welcomed her new husband as one of our own. Making his living in the computer field like our son, the two are good friends and share not only an interest in the internet but also video games and the Atlanta Braves. With the three kids here for the holidays, the house will once again be full of the laughter and vitality that young people bring inside the walls.

Last Christmas my mother was in the hospital and extremely ill, bringing everyone together in a vigil that lasted for weeks and made us realize how much we take our every day activities for granted. This year we are grateful for her good health and that we can all be together, and we are more aware of others who are experiencing health crises in their families.

The tree lights are on ... time to get to work. I love this time of year. It's December in the Shenandoah Valley....

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