Anyone else stunned that we're at Christmas Eve already? This year has gone by SO quickly. I think that means that I'm getting old or something :)
Up early this morning, enjoying a quiet cup of coffee and some time on the computer before the insanity of last minute chores and loading the car and driving north begins. Christmas presents are opened here already- we decided to not try to fit that into this morning, so did presents and the Christmas story reading on Christmas Eve-Eve. The kids had fun opening presents this year. They seem to finally be getting the idea of ripping the paper and finding the new toy inside.
I was thinking last night about memorable Christmases- reminiscing with Daniel about all the Christmases that we've spent together, finally remembering how we spent our first married Christmas (we've been trying to remember for a month, and I didn't blog about it, darn it!), realizing that it's been a decade since I spent Christmas with friends traveling around Italy. 10 years ago I was nearing the end of my year in Ukraine when I met up in Rome with a college friend who was then studying in Jerusalem. I still remember vividly all the travel that it took to get there- old Soviet-era tram to the old overnight Soviet-era train to another city where I caught a Soviet-era bus to the airport and had some culture shock flying back to Western Europe after so much time in Ukraine.
This time 10 years ago, I was staying in a small hotel in Rome with my college friend and her university friends. We would spend lots of time walking around Rome and then traveled to other parts of Italy. Christmas Eve itself was spent in the rain in Vatican Square, listening to the pope's Christmas Eve message, being hit repeatedly by the umbrella of a nun sitting in the row in front of me.
Now I'm off to spend Christmas in another foreign country, albeit one that's a little closer to home and (I'm sorry Canadians!) a bit less glamorous. But I'm going to be with my husband and kids and that's all that really matters. Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas, wherever you are!