It seems that since Thanksgiving, when I had my whole brood with me, things have not fallen back into their routine.

I’ve been through this before during my homeschooling years when things got so off kilter I reluctantly decided that,

“No routine is going to be my routine this year!”

It wasn’t just for twelve months though,

It went on and on and I became a most flexible person!

Advent arrived while our oldest, film-maker son and his friends were still in Texas, for Thanksgiving, and our wreaths and candles came out to set the mood and keep track of the passing of time.

Hubs and I staved off shopping and decorating until the final week.

We attended two rounds of Nine Lessons and Carols at our favorite churches in the metroplex, Incarnation and St. Peter’s taking family with us to share in the anticipation of the season.

At home I baked as if I had a houseful of people,


lemon curd for the masses, filled with memories of Perripoppins who always helped when she was home,


Christmas puddings,

Bakewell tarts and a huge Derbyshire pie,


that baked to perfection


and took pride of place on the Boxing Day table…


but hang on, that was the day after Christmas…

We went to Christmas Eve service alone and practiced our selfie skills for one of the last times of the year.


At church we sang carols, old and new, enough to satisfy our craving for the sacred songs after four solemn weeks of waiting patiently.

Now our house could resound with the strains of Silent Night, Once in Royal David’s City, Frosty the Snowman and Chestnuts roasting by an open fire!

We ate our traditional Chinese meal and reminisced about other Christmases at other times,

wishing our grandparents and parents could be with us as peers so we could compare parenting notes and be strengthened by our shared experiences decades apart.

There were no young children to lure Santa to our hearth this year…

So we ate the cookies and milk and fell asleep over our hot cocoa and Netflix!

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