A truly wonderful day.
We managed to wake up before E this morning. Got some coffee going, waited as long as we could, and finally woke him up around 7. The exclamation of joy and delight this year was, "Sick!" If someone's gift received that acclaim, it was a true hit! :-)
We opened gifts for a long, long time. Then cleaned ourselves up a bit for church. I had imagined about twenty folks showing up. A small, intimate gathering after last night's big hurrah. But I couldn't have been more wrong. Although, the feeling was intimate, there were many people there. More than a typical Sunday.
G and I had planned this morning's service to be singing, singing, and more singing. Occasionally broken up by some prayers. Basically that was it. And it was wonderful. For me, anyway, exactly what I needed. Joy. The service ended with a rockin', revivalesque singing of "Go Tell it On the Mountain!" Fabulous.
Like last night, we managed to keep the service short enough that folks stayed for quite sometime afterwards to visit with one another. It was just a delightful spirit in the place. And made all the more joyful in the relief of Advent.
After church, on a whim, we drove around downtown to see if any restaurants were opened. We found a quaint little Mediterranean Cafe with its door open. So we went in and enjoyed a fabulous meal. Shortly after they gave us our menus, they brought a large pita-like bread to the table along with a plate of balsamic vinagrette (with herbs, onions, tomatoes) for dipping. Not long after that, an additional small plate with hummus and baba ghanoush. I was in heaven before I'd even considered my meal. (Which ended up being a terrific gyro.)
During lunch, E asked: "Why did God have a son and not a daughter?" I thought about it for a bit, then simply admitted: "I don't know." Well, this opened E up to begin talking about women's equality, to speculate on the way in which religion (and the male gender of Jesus) has served to perpetuate negative gender expectations to the detriment of women. (He suggested that God should have had one of each--a son and a daughter, about six months apart. Not the least benefit being that there would be two Christmasses this way.) Then he observed how few women are depicted as heros in books. And I'm telling you, he talked for an hour straight about this--no exaggeration! We had finished up our meal, piled into the car, travelled all the way home, and gotten to our front door before he finally finished up, saying: "And now, to bring this conversation to a close, as I shall do now--women are as powerful as men, even though their bodies tend to be smaller than men's bodies when they are fully grown." My boy! (He's 7, by the way.)
When we came home again, we made some phone calls to far-away family. Then the other big event of the day was watching Fellowship of the Ring with E for the first time. He's about 160 pages into the book--which I'd required him to read before he could see the film. But he pulled out all the stops today and asked if we could watch it together "for Christmas." Since I've been dying to watch it with E anyway, it was just the thing I needed to push me over the edge. I have a distinct feeling he knew right well that would be the case.
Well, guess that's it for now. Just wanted to get a few things down before the day was gone.
Peace. Love. And Happy Christmas.