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I’m a bit of a grinch when it comes to Christmas.  The big holiday in my family has always been Thanksgiving.  We go and visit extended family, see people we don’t really know that well and eat until we almost go into a coma.  It’s everything anyone could want, from pies to turkey to arguments over breakfast.

But Christmas is a more sedate holiday in my immediate family.  We celebrate it here in town with just us (and my brother’s new fiancee!).  We eat a breakfast Mom cooks, open presents and then go see a movie.  It’s fun.

At the same time, it’s difficult.  My family doesn’t do a ton over the holidays.  They were never much for the multiple parties and get-togethers which seem to mark everyone else’s holiday season.  (That isn’t, by the way, a euphemism for Christmas.  I’m talking Thanksgiving through New Year’s, folks.)  In fact, the only hurry-scurry I have in my life this time of year is traffic…which is why many of the sermons I’ve heard over the years about “slowing down” just don’t make much sense to me experientially.  If my family life this time of year gets any more relaxed, it’ll mean we don’t even get together on Christmas Day!

This is my first Christmas not living at home.  This means I’ve been spending a great deal of time by myself.  It’s been productive; in the last three days, I’ve written five hymn-tunes.  But it’s been incredibly lonely as well.  I haven’t even been able to make myself go work out.  I need to, if for no other reason that working out helps manage my moods…and the extra pounds I’ve put on since starting seminary. 🙂

Anyway, the snow is indeed falling on this Christmas Eve as I type this.  The last remaining roommate went home an hour ago.  It’s just me.  Church doesn’t happen for another hour and a half or so.

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