'tis almost the season

I'm at work, listening to a children's choir rehearse the Shepherd's Chorus from Amahl and the Night Visitors. And while I'd rather be sitting at home in my jammies, listening to it on my iPod, it's a pretty close second. It's one of those things that puts me in the holiday mood...I think that first time I heard/performed it was in Pittsburgh, for a holiday concert at my undergrad. Even now, when I'm in a singy mood and someone does something nice for me, I'll quote the King's "Thank you, thank you...thank you kindly."

Add it to the "Reasons to be Thankful" list.

Starting the holiday season, which culminates yearly in "The Running of the Polacks." We pack up the car, drive to Pennsylvania and spend several days bouncing back andforth between parents, inlaws, great-aunts and uncles, grandparents. Eating our weight in traditional foods that are entirely crafted of flour, lard and potatoes. (Even the 12-fruit compote) Sleeping on seldom-used guest beds. Playing with the niece & nephew that we don't see nearly often enough. And then we drive back to DC, the car just as heavily-laden with gifts (albeit unwrapped) as it was when we left. I have to say, I'm looking forward to it. My inlaws are great people - very little holiday stress there, aside from the What-are-we-going-to-get-them-for-Christmas? kind. And my side of the family provides, as we call it, the color. Buttons will be pushed, oh yes.

I'm just hoping that, this year, they're not my buttons. Please, Santa? Please?

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