Christmastime is Here…

At long last, it’s Christmastime. True, I’ve been getting into the spirit for weeks: the decorations around town, the copious amounts of Punsch to take the chill off, the Christmas shopping. But, since I knew I was leaving Vienna for the holiday, everything else has really just been prelude. Delightful prelude, but still.

Now, though, I’m leaving tomorrow to spend two wonderful weeks with my sister and her family (Bryony, over at A Series of Beginnings). The fridge has been cleared of perishables, Hortense the cyclamen has been left with a neighbor for watering over the holiday, the suitcase is neatly packed. I have all my presents stowed away (but not wrapped, per TSA guidelines).

Something tells me these guys don't exactly have the Christmas spirit.

Something tells me these guys don’t exactly have the Christmas spirit.

It should be a really great trip. I get to spend time with my big sister, Lucy to my Ethel and Simon to my Garfunkel. I get to play with and spoil my nephew: after all, someone has to eat the massive chocolate Santa Claus stowed away in my suitcase. We’ll be visiting with my sister’s in-laws, really lovely people. At the risk of sounding old-fashioned, they’re wholesome. A visit to their house means good food, long walks, and a much-deserved nap by the fire.

Idyllic, basically.

Idyllic, basically.

Most of all, there will be plenty of music. My sister and I sing duets together—mostly Simon and Garfunkel (see above); my brother-in-law plays piano, and quite a lot of his family sing or play an instrument as well. I’ve brought along a bit of my choir music, which should be really fun.

And speaking of Christmas music, what are your favorite songs to get into the spirit of the season? Personally, I like a mix, from hymns (O Come Emmanuel, Gaudete) to standards (Let It Snow, Baby It’s Cold Outside) to pop classics (Feed the World, All I Want For Christmas Is You). I have a real soft spot in my heart for the Mariah Carey classic, and not just because of Love, Actually. I was on the dance team in high school, and at Christmastime, our performance at the halftime show was set to this number, and we all wore Santa hats with our uniforms and tossed candy canes into the audience. It was so much fun.

Posting might be a bit spotty over the next two weeks (I’m on vacation, after all!) so in case you miss me, here are some suggestions for blogs to check out:

Merry Christmas, everyone!

With love, and and ugly Christmas sweater.

With love, and and ugly Christmas sweater.

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