Christmas was pretty great. Not perfect, (is anything in life?) not tantrum or stress free, but wonderful. I shared a lot of thoughts and stories (and photos, of course) on my Instagram account (@smallyspice), but wanted to share some photos from my nicer camera here. As well as a fun little movie I put together. (iMovie is my new favorite hobby).
I think what stands out to me most is Christmas Eve. We were invited to spend it with the Hale Family. Brad and Susan are very close family friends of ours. We had originally planned on hosting dinner at our home with a few friends who are single and who were alone for the holidays. I LOVE eating our traditional roast lamb with cous cous, sautéed mushroom and onions. Instead, we joined forces and all of us went to the Hales. It was superb. The food and the company.
Their home is so inviting and warm. After dinner, we sat in the living room and listened to their daughter, Maggie, (a music major at the U) play Christmas songs. The fire was crackling, the kids were playing on the floor, and the prime rib was resting nicely in my tummy. I took a seat next to my dear friend, Michelle. She had her seat reclined due to a foot injury and her eyes were closed as she took in the beautiful music with her soul.
Michelle has had an extremely bumpy road the last 7 years or so. She went through a very ugly divorce, joined the Mormon church (where I met her), and is desperately trying to find peace amidst the chaos of her life. Unique, LOUD, outspoken, beautiful, and with a heart of gold, Michelle and I really connect with one another.
At some point during the song, she reached over and squeezed my hand. After her gentle and meaningful squeeze, eyes still closed, with tears running down her cheeks, we continued to hold hands through the remainder of the song.
It dawned on me that that form of love, that feeling of absolute connection, unbridled by anything sexual, no expectations or disappointments, just the joy of being together, being there FOR each other, is my very favorite form of love. It feels better than anything I've ever experienced. No words, no awkwardness, just two humans who love and care for one another soaking in the spirit of the season while listening to beautiful music. It was heaven.
That was one of my favorite Christmas highlights.
But we can't forget about all the sugar (TOO MUCH) and fun. The cousins and the sledding and the magical snow. You may have seen this video on Facebook, but here it is again for your viewing pleasure. (As well as some photos of people I love too much to put into words).