As the adults strung popcorn and shared memories, the kids all entertained themselves quite happily...
Kyra and Jessie preparing to perform a Christmas song for us:
To say that we had a lot of laughs this evening would be an understatement. I should post the picture of us laughing, but I have like 3 chins or something and am too vain to put it up. Once we started talking about all the silly things we did, places we went, and mishaps that occurred on our many family adventures together, there was no stopping us. Each of us would jump in with a "oh, and remember..." that was followed by an embarrassing moment or thoughtful gesture. Man when you cram 10-18 years of memories into one night you realize how crazy and delightful things really were.
I told my mom Monday morning over breakfast that I might have a surprise for her that night. When I invited Millie over she asked, "can we bring instruments too?" Of course silly woman! When we were young, we would get together with the Harkins on Christmas Eve and "sing" Christmas carols. What it really amounted to was Lacy and I on the violin and cello, Edith singing boisterously, and my mom and LeRoy mouthing the words. I always hid behind the cello in those days, I was so shy (even around family)!
I thought we were going to pass the buck to our children this year (Jessie plays the viola and Kyra plays the violin), but Millie showed up with 3 violas and a cello! What?! The girls fiddled around (haha) while we were chatting but then their moms busted in on them and joined the fun. They had sheet music for all but the violin so I got to transpose the cello part of Silent Night for Kyra and she learned most of it in about 5 minutes. Edith came back to drag us out of the bedroom and told us to practice in the living room so they could hear us. It was hard enough to get through the song together, so there was no singing on this number. Alyssa knew Jingle Bells, so we all turned to that and had a group of performers that outnumbered the audience for the first time ever! Jessie, Millie, and I started off on the "dashing through the snow bit" and then Kyra, Alyssa, and Tasha joined in on the "jingle bell" chorus. Tasha was so excited to toot that recorder (on the same note) to the beat of a song she knew! She was beaming she was so happy.
After the Christmas songs we ad libbed "Happy Birthday", everyone joined in singing, and we ate cupcakes that Tasha and I made and Kyra frosted. My mom loves traditions and a good walk down memory lane, so hopefully this birthday celebration was an OK tribute to the most wonderful mom I could ever have. I love you mom!!!