Taken after church on Christmas Eve
Christmas Eve was lovely. We like to go to Mark's parents' church on Christmas Eve as they always have a lovely nativity service for the children. Any child who wants to can dress up to help to tell the story of that first Christmas so long ago. Lily dressed as a shepherd and Emma as an angel and very sweet they looked too. After church, we went back to Mark's parents' house for tea before heading back home.
It was late by the time we got back, so I needed to get Alex in bed fairly quickly. I put him in his new pyjamas, but there was no chance to get my usual Christmas Eve pyjama photo of all of the Podlings together. Alex and Tom had matching checked pyjamas for Christmas Eve, but Tom declined to be photographed in them! The girls also matched each other in pretty floral pyjamas and were more co-operative in the photo department! After putting Alex to bed with his stocking, the girls sprinkled reindeer food on the lawn before coming inside for hot chocolate and shortbread. We put out a mince pie and some milk for Father Christmas and a carrot and a bowl of water for the reindeer before heading upstairs to bed. I read them 'The Night Before Christmas' from the copy my sister and I had as a child and said goodnight to three very excited children. They settled down surprisingly quickly, knowing that Father Christmas won't come to fill their stockings until they are asleep.
I love Christmas Eve! There is so much magic in the familiar tradtions, the anticipation of the children and the overwhelming beauty of the story of the birth of a baby boy in a stable two thousand years ago.
"For unto us a child is born. Unto us a son is given" Isaiah 9:6
Off to bed for sleepy Alex